Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Tasting Hyland Estates Current Releases

Once again I was invited to do a live Twitter tasting (shall we just call them LTt's?) but for a change, the winery featured is local to me. As many of you know, every Wednesday on Twitter, from 6-7pm PST you can use the hashtag #Winechat and see a passionate group of wine lovers chatting, usually with a fairly specific topic. It's a great way to learn about wine while connecting with people from around the world.

Hyland Estates, located in the McMinnville AVA, has vineyards dating back to 1971. There are several highly regarded wineries using the fruit too, and Hyland Estates is almost always comes up in discussion for premier grapes here in the Willamette Valley. My friend and Hyland Estates' Director of Marketing, April, invited me to participate along with fellow bloggers from around the USA.

From the press materials I received: "The initial planting is all self-rooted in volcanic Jory soil and has the largest planting of self-rooted Coury Clone Pinot Noir which was smuggled into the US presumably from Alsace by Charles Coury during the 1960’s. Hyland Estates is centered on old-vine, terroir-driven wines from the historic Hyland Vineyard located in the foothills of the Oregon Coastal Range near McMinnville. Originally planted in 1971, the 200 acres Hyland Vineyard showcases some of the best preserved self-rooted 40-plus year old plantings of Coury, Wädenswil, and Pommard clones in Oregon as well as some of the first Gewurztraminer, Riesling, and Chardonnay vines planted in the state. Since the purchase in 2007, Laurent Montalieu, Danielle Andrus Montalieu, and John Niemeyer have devoted their work to honoring its past through gentle stewardship of the land and terroir-driven grape production."

Pretty cool, right? Needless to say, I was looking forward to this tasting.

2012 Hyland Estates Riesling: Lots of ripe apple and spices on the nose, along with a hint of summer melon and citrus. Plenty of acidity kissed by just a touch (.8%) residual sugar. That helps show some more apple and spice tones along with a little bit of leesy richness. Overall this a clean, simple, easy to drink riesling that I really want to pair with some spicy Thai food. $25 srp. 13.0% abv.

2013 Hyland Estates Gewurztraminer: The nose is all lychee and peaches, how lovely! On the palate it's got a lot acidity, a good thing, as well as an interesting oiliness which makes it taste a little bit richer. Pear and peach work with the lychee on the palate to balance out the wine nicely. Another one that does need to be paired with food, and be sure not to taste it too cold! The aromatics are lovely as it warms up. $28 srp. 12.2% abv.

2011 Hyland Estates Pinot Noir McMinnville: I opened this about 2 hours prior to tasting. On nose it veers into darker territory, with more focused black cherry and cola notes. Some lovely summer strawberry aromas come through with air, along with a touch of balsamic and a kiss of oak. This is definitely bigger on the palate too, with broad-shouldered black fruit and cola. The acidity is quite compelling, and there are firm tannins. It's got a bit of heat on the finish, but that isn't too distracting from the overall quality of the wine. Bring on the cheeseburgers! 13.3% abv. srp $38.

2012 Hyland Estates Pinot Noir "Coury": Spicy black pepper, forest floor, black cherries. A bit reticent on the palate, despite a 2 hour decant, this is young but strangely not as exuberant as almost every other 2012 I've had. On the other hand, excellent mouthfeel, it's rich and full-bodied (for a pinot) but retains good acidity and finely integrated tannins. More oak comes through with swirling, which helps rather than hinders. There's black tea and cola on the rich, smooth finish. All in a all, a wine to drink now but also to have the luxury of cellaring for several years. 13.5% abv. srp $60.

Thanks again to April for inviting me to participate. I think the tasting notes tell the story and if you're interested in the wines, check out the Hyland Estates website or Hyland Estates on Facebook.

These wines were samples for tasting purposes.

Beau Carufel

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