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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Sam Platt » Thu Feb 07, 2013 4:50 pm

I have had mixed results with SI Pinots, but I have really taken a liking to their Freedom Hill Chardonnay. It is nicely balanced with just a touch of oak. The SI Chard is often overlooked with the major focus being on their Pinot.
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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Jason Hagen » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:01 am

Sam Platt wrote:I have had mixed results with SI Pinots, but I have really taken a liking to their Freedom Hill Chardonnay. It is nicely balanced with just a touch of oak. The SI Chard is often overlooked with the major focus being on their Pinot.


The chards are excellent. The old 7 Springs Chards really improved with age too. I think the Freedom Hills will do the same.

Drinking the 2010 Villages Cuvee pinot right now. WOW! An outstanding wine ... and sub $25. 2010 & 2011 pinots are awesome.

J
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Jeff Grossman/NYC

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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Jeff Grossman/NYC » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:49 am

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Joy Lindholm

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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Joy Lindholm » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:55 pm

Sam Platt wrote:I have had mixed results with SI Pinots, but I have really taken a liking to their Freedom Hill Chardonnay. It is nicely balanced with just a touch of oak. The SI Chard is often overlooked with the major focus being on their Pinot.


Of their whites, I really enjoyed the 2010 Freedom Hill Pinot Blanc the most. Fermented 2/3 in stainless steel and 1/3 in neutral oak, this was delightfully tart apple and green pear but had subtle baking spices and wasn't quite as unfriendly as some PB's can be.

Some of my biggest surprises while visiting Willamette were the white wines. I expected to find great Pinot Noir, but didn't have super high hopes for the whites. I was really blown away by the quality of Pinot Blanc/Pinot Gris/Riesling especially that is coming out of that region. A few nice Chards too, but I don't go too crazy for Chards in general (other than Burgundies).
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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by wnissen » Fri Feb 08, 2013 5:03 pm

Jenise wrote:
David M. Bueker wrote:On what basis of evidence did we ever decide that St. Innocent (or really any Oregon Pinot save a select few) made long aging wines? I know that it has been received wisdom for quite a while, but what data led to it?


My guess: back when only a few Oregon pinots held up five years, St. Innocent's single vineyards (well, maybe not Temperance Hill but Freedom Hill, SS and O'Connor, yes) reliably went to sleep at around 3-4 and woke up around age 8. Some years produced 10-12 year wines, but those were usually the wines least valued in their infancy, like 1997. The rest have tended to peak at 8-9 then do this wierd perp-walk into nothingness, turning into, as I've always called it, "mud".

One data point: I really enjoyed a 2001 St. Innocent Freedom Hill just last month, and it seemed young.
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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Tom N. » Sat Feb 09, 2013 2:39 pm

I find this discussion of SI wines quite interesting. In my tour through the Willamette valley wineries in 2011, I thought that the SI pinots I was tasting were the most burgundian like of any winery that I visited. My two favorites were Momtazi and Freedom Hill. I could not keep my hands off the 2007 Momtazis and they are all gone now, but I still have one 2008 Freedom Hill left. Given this discussion of ageability of SI wines, I am wondering how long this wine will age and what the optimum drinking window will be? Anyone care to guess how long the 2008s will last?
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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Jason Hagen » Sat Feb 09, 2013 2:48 pm

wnissen wrote:
Jenise wrote:
David M. Bueker wrote:On what basis of evidence did we ever decide that St. Innocent (or really any Oregon Pinot save a select few) made long aging wines? I know that it has been received wisdom for quite a while, but what data led to it?


My guess: back when only a few Oregon pinots held up five years, St. Innocent's single vineyards (well, maybe not Temperance Hill but Freedom Hill, SS and O'Connor, yes) reliably went to sleep at around 3-4 and woke up around age 8. Some years produced 10-12 year wines, but those were usually the wines least valued in their infancy, like 1997. The rest have tended to peak at 8-9 then do this wierd perp-walk into nothingness, turning into, as I've always called it, "mud".

One data point: I really enjoyed a 2001 St. Innocent Freedom Hill just last month, and it seemed young.


Great to hear. The 7 Springs Chards aged similarly. I finally forced myself to stop opening the chards young.

J
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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Jason Hagen » Sat Feb 09, 2013 3:00 pm

Tom N. wrote:I find this discussion of SI wines quite interesting. In my tour through the Willamette valley wineries in 2011, I thought that the SI pinots I was tasting were the most burgundian like of any winery that I visited. My two favorites were Momtazi and Freedom Hill. I could not keep my hands off the 2007 Momtazis and they are all gone now, but I still have one 2008 Freedom Hill left. Given this discussion of ageability of SI wines, I am wondering how long this wine will age and what the optimum drinking window will be? Anyone care to guess how long the 2008s will last?


Interesting about you thoughts on the 07 Momtazi. I really like that wine as well. But on another wine board it is perhaps the most controversial wine of the last 3 years.

Last time I tasted the 08 Freedom Hill would have been at the winery pre-release so I can't be any help. But I would venture to say, given the normal structure of Freedom Hill and the vintage, it should easily age 8-12 years. Maybe more. Depending on how much tannin you like. Early on I did not really like Freedom Hill so the few bottles I had, aged for a bit. The wine really developed. The 2000 seemed to hit its stride around 2009. I suspect the 2008 will be a superior wine.

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Re: WTN: 2001 St. Innocent Seven Springs

by Tom N. » Sat Feb 09, 2013 3:12 pm

Jason Hagen wrote:
Tom N. wrote:I find this discussion of SI wines quite interesting. In my tour through the Willamette valley wineries in 2011, I thought that the SI pinots I was tasting were the most burgundian like of any winery that I visited. My two favorites were Momtazi and Freedom Hill. I could not keep my hands off the 2007 Momtazis and they are all gone now, but I still have one 2008 Freedom Hill left. Given this discussion of ageability of SI wines, I am wondering how long this wine will age and what the optimum drinking window will be? Anyone care to guess how long the 2008s will last?


Interesting about you thoughts on the 07 Momtazi. I really like that wine as well. But on another wine board it is perhaps the most controversial wine of the last 3 years.

Last time I tasted the 08 Freedom Hill would have been at the winery pre-release so I can't be any help. But I would venture to say, given the normal structure of Freedom Hill and the vintage, it should easily age 8-12 years. Maybe more. Depending on how much tannin you like. Early on I did not really like Freedom Hill so the few bottles I had, aged for a bit. The wine really developed. The 2000 seemed to hit its stride around 2009. I suspect the 2008 will be a superior wine.

Jason

Hi Jason,

Well, I do have a confession to make about the 2007 Momtazis. It was not the best Momtazi I tasted at SI in 2011. I thought the 2008 Momtazi was better, but because of all the hype about the 2008s SI was clearing out the 07s with a $10 off sale at $30 each. I bought 3 bottles at that price and I am glad I did. It was/is a really nice wine. Not sure if it would age as long as the 2008, but it had good complexity and balance.
Tom Noland
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