Shea Vineyard Pinot noirs emphasize weight with good acidity, layered flavors, concentrated fruit, and terroir specific flavors. The Shea Pinot noirs Mark has produced consistently out-age wines from other sites. He also considers them to be the most complex and detailed wines he makes. The best wines of Burgundy are exceptionally detailed wines that age very well. If we apply that standard to Oregon, Shea is a great vineyard. Shea is actually two vineyards separated by a steep ravine. Both of the blocks used for St. Innocent are located in the East Field. Block 6 was planted in 1998 with Dijon clone 115 and a small amount of Pommard (11 rows). It lies on a long SE slope at about 600' in elevation. The Terrace Block faces SW, is planted with the Pommard clone, and gets its name from the terraces carved into its steep slope.
Vintage Notes: 2008 was an exceptional vintage, made exceptional by being quietly ordinary. Bloom was very late in variable weather. The result was smaller clusters with fewer berries. The summer passed quickly with veraison occurring earlier than expected, leaving the false impression that there was more crop hanging in the vineyard than there really was. Final ripening took place in endless cool, sunny days in an atmosphere of calm that I have never experienced, but hope to again. The fruit was picked clean and perfectly ripe. The only downside was the very small crop, our smallest in ten years.