This is a complex wine that reflects the heat of the afternoon sun, the cool, windy evenings, and the rustic soils of the McMinnville hills while retaining the dark beauty of its intense, ripe fruit. It is aromatically complex with layers of blue and black fruit, Indian spices, coffee hints, and pepper. In the mouth the blue/black fruit flavors and eastern spice notes are layered with a "sauvage" sense of wildness. Texturally layered, its flavors vary in intensity and quality over your tongue and palate. Ample ripe tannins balance with its acidity.
Momtazi Vineyard is located in the McMinnville AVA, 7 miles west of McMinnville, Oregon. Planted in 1999 and 2004 on thin, poor soils, the vines have a south and SW exposure at an elevation of 680-760'. The vineyard is certified biodynamic by Demeter. In 2006 I approached Moe Momtazi and asked if St. Innocent could contract for Pinot noir fruit from his bio-dynamically farmed vineyard. From my first trip to France in 1998, I observed that the greatest domaines in both Burgundy and Alsace had one thing in common: they farmed bio-dynamically.
2016 was the third in a string of warm summers and early harvests. It produced the smallest crop of the three. The harvest began with a bit of heat and dehydration in the fruit. This immediately resolved with cooler temperatures and the rest of the harvest produced well balanced fruit with lovely flavors and ripe tannins. We finished picking at the end of September, producing a total of 10,200 cases. In general 2016 produced lush, early-drinking wines with lovely aromatics and accessible fruit, spice and floral notes. They can be aged and are quite approachable in their youth.
Food Pairing Notes
Braised meats, roasts, mushrooms or dishes with eastern spices