Abetina II Pinot Noir 2016
For decades, Ponzi Abetina Vineyard, which sits on a spectacular east-facing slope born in 1975 as a clonal experiment for Oregon State University, has produced an impressive Pinot noir with unique and complex flavors. So enthralled by the success at Abetina, in 2005 an exact duplicate was planted at Ponzi’s stunning Aurora Vineyard.
The experimental collection of more than 20 Pinot noir clones was planted to the same soil, elevation and aspect, as Abetina. With the added element of youth, the Abetina 2 block at Aurora Vineyard gives this cuvée unparalleled vibrancy and depth.
This single vineyard cuvée is crafted exclusively with Pinot noir from the Abetina 2 block at Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Aurora Vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains AVA.
Fermentation took place in small lots with 5 days of cold soaking to increase aroma and color. The fermenters were aerated or manually punched down twice a day (for 12-20 days) before undergoing a 7 day post- fermentation maceration to increase structure and length.
This wine was aged in French oak barrels (50% new), for 20 months.It was racked and bottled by gravity without filtration or fining and was aged in bottle for five months before its release.
For the last three years the Ponzis have been defining the new normal with early vintages in the Willamette Valley. 2016 jumped out of the gate with bud break a full 3 weeks earlier than usual. Flowering was condensed by a heat spell and an early summer gave us beautiful warm temperatures until August when it heated up. Harvest arrived later that month and was in full swing by early September. All fruit was in the door by the first part of October.
Fruit quality was immaculate with absolutely no disease pressure. Fruit set was small due to the short flowering time. Berry size was also small resulting in lower yields and gorgeously intense fruit.We would liken 2016 to the 2006 vintage where we saw lush, beautiful wines with unexpected elegance and acidity, but in achingly short supply. Truly, a stellar vintage for Oregon.
“Bramble berry, chocolate, basil, rose petal and blackberry mingle with fresh aromatics of sea air and oyster shell. The mouth is generous and full with notes of cassis, creamy dolce de leche, nutmeg, hazelnuts and plum preserves. Balanced acidity and fine tannins bring structure and length to the long finish.” – Winemaker Luisa Ponzi
Sourced from Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Aurora Vineyard
Suggested Retail Price
Wine Enthusiast - “This is a block selection from a 2005 planting at the Aurora Vineyard, designed to replicate the original Abetina vines. It's silky and saturated, and scents of roses and flavors of figs and black cherries abound. Details of nutmeg and mocha contribute further length and interest. It should drink well into the mid-2020s, but it is flat-out delicious already, so no need to wait.”
Vinous Media - "Brilliant red. Fresh cherry and raspberry on the nose, along with building vanilla, root beer and incense notes. Concentrated yet lively, offering appealingly sweet, oak-spiced red fruit and floral pastille flavors that show excellent clarity and a hint of smokiness. Finishes very long and spicy, showing real tension, smooth tannins and resonating florality. This generous but energetic Pinot has a pH of 3.7. (50% new French oak)"
Other Wines by this Producer
Laurelwood District, Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley
For over 50 years, the Ponzi family has farmed 140 acres of certified sustainable vineyards all planted on Laurelwood soil. Situated along the Northern ridge of the Willamette Valley, these ancient soils are comprised of fractured basalt layered over with a fine, windblown sediment called loess. A decade-long effort by sisters Maria and Luisa, alongside their neighbors has resulted in the recognition of Oregon’s first soil-based AVA, the Laurelwood District. The inaugural 2017 vintage boasts the new label design, with a textured effect that resembles the layers of the Laurelwood soils.
One of the original and most recognized Oregon and U.S. Pinot Gris producers, Ponzi was a major influence in establishing Pinot Gris as the first quality white grape variety in Oregon. Ponzi's Pinot Gris is an irresistably aromatic and expressive wine, and serves as a first encounter for many wine drinkers with Oregon wines and the Ponzi estate.
Pinot blanc was planted at Aurora Vineyard in the early 1990s, taking advantage of an ideal portion of the 80-acre site. This versatile white wine is a wonderful alternative to Pinot gris. Beautiful floral aromas of jasmine and magnolia mingle with notes of lychee, lemongrass, beeswax and green tea mochi with a touch of cardamom. The textured mouth is reminiscent of shortbread and the freshness of rainwater and wet slate with bright, juicy acidity that encourages another sip.
Laurelwood District, Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley
The Ponzi family has dedicated over 30 years to innovation in farming and winemaking to develop Oregon Chardonnay's place in the world. Luisa Ponzi's formative experiences working in Burgundy in the early 1990s guide her vision of producing complex and ageworthy Chardonnay. Now labeled with the Laurelwood District AVA designation, Oregon’s first soil-based AVA, the 2017 Chardonnay Reserve features a new label design with a textured effect that resembles the layers of the Laurelwood soils.
Tavola is Ponzi's delicious early release Pinot Noir, a fruit-forward wine with soft tannins, made primarily from younger, lower elevations vines. Meant for early consumption, it is an unbeatable value for quality Pinot Noir.
The "classic" representation of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, this wine encapsulates the experience, innovation, top vineyard sources, and expertise of the pioneering Ponzi family. Among the first to make Pinot Noir in Oregon and the United States and, since the start, among the very best.
Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley
Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Noir Reserve is the epitome of restrained power. It hails from estate grown fruit on Laurelwood soils in the Chehalem Mountains, including from some of Oregon’s oldest vines. This remarkably complex wine is handcrafted with tremendous attention to detail.
Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Aurora yields an elegant wine with bright acidity and fruit.
Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Planted in 2006, Avellana yields a richer, weightier style of Chardonnay as compared to the Aurora single vineyard wine.
Willamette Valley, Oregon
Aurora means sunrise and represents an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Aurora yields an elegant wine with bright acidity and fruit.