Wine Spectator 92
“Vibrant and well-strucutpred, with refined cherry, stony mineral and green tea accents that build
richness and polish toward fine-grained tannins.” Drink now 2028. From Oregon. -T.F.
James Suckling 92
“Attractively ripe red plums and cherries abound here with a core of red plums
on the palate, which holds a ripe, central stance. The depth is good and it’s softer at the finish.”
International Wine Report 90
“This great Pinot Noir opens with aromas of red cherry with earthy terroir and lighter herbal tones on the nose. The palate is plush showing red fruits that connect with lighter orange rind and wet stone character. Drink 2019-2025”
This growing season started with cool, wet spring weather, which created random, poor fruit set in some blocks. May and early June saw a few high heat spikes, but overall the summer's warm, sunny weather kicked growth into gear. Then a cold, wet, “Alaska” front perked the vines up around the 17th of August. Refreshed fruit sailed into a beautiful fall harvest where growers and winemakers alike enjoyed a nice and steady pace of picking perfectly ripened wine grapes. The resulting wines are robust without losing that ROCO juicy-centered youthfullness.
The hills in the Willamette Valley are punctuated by gravel roads, which lead to the regions finest vineyards. ROCO’s Gravel Road Pinot Noir is a blend of several of these distinctive vineyards including the Soles’ own Wits’ End Vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains AVA. An outstanding value, the Gravel Road Pinot Noir flavor profile surpasses many other wineries flagship Pinot Noirs. The old world style offers bold flavor with balance and grace to pair well with nearly any food.
"Layers of aromas include black cherry and currants shifting toward sour cherry and red cherry, intermingled with spiced aromatics of German Chocolate Cake and black pepper overlaying a foundation of fresh, fall forest floor earth. The flavor is immediately generous, round with lovely mid-palate weight. Look for those black fruits and a raspberry creme liquor fruitiness at the finish. White peppercorn and nasturtium seed blend with deeper chocolate and vanilla spices. This pinot is enjoyable today, and will be well worth aging for up to 10 years."
VARIETAL: 100% Pinot Noir
APPELLATION: Willamette Valley AVA
VINEYARDS: Wits’ End, Marsh Estate, Russell-Grooter and Hopewell
SOILS: Sedimentary & Basalt
CLONES: Pommard, Dijon and Wädenswil
OAK: 0% New French
ROCO Pinot Noir is handpicked and then chilled overnight to 38°F in our large cold room. The chilled bunches are gently de-stalked and the whole berries fall into small 1.6 ton open fermenters. The berries soak for ten days before beginning ferment with our proprietary, house-cultured, indigenous wine yeast. Soaking allows gentle extraction of color and flavor from the berry skin, and not the bitter-tasting seeds. The fermentations are hand punched twice a day to mix skins and fermenting juices. Ferments are allowed to reach about 28°C. A post-fermentation soak occurs until the wine is just right for removing from the skins and seeds. At that time the ferment is gently pressed in our modern tank press. The young wine is then sent to barrel for malolactic fermentation to soften the acidity and to add further complexity, then racked once to new, one, two and three-year-old, tight-grained, French oak barrels. The wines are aged in barrel for 18 or more months before bottling.
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