Februrary Domestic Wine: 2012 Grochau Cellars ‘Commuter Cuvee’ Pinot Noir, Willamette, OREGON
“At Grochau Cellars, we come to wine as appreciators first, explorers second and creators third. We try to always remember that balance. Drawing inspiration from the landscape around us, and the classic, nuanced wines of France and Spain, we craft the kind of wines we hope to drink at the end of the day: pure, honest and delicious.
Established in 2002, Grochau Cellars is anchored to our Oregon homeland, and we approach each vintage with the same goals: Create complex, genuine wines true to their origins and to the distinct flavors of Oregon.” -grochaucellars.com
Origins of Grochau Cellars: Grochau Cellars is the project and passion of John Grochau, and his wife Kerri. John has been fortunate enough to learn the trade from some of the Willamette Valley’s finest winemakers. From the pioneering cellars and large-scale work of Erath Winery to four years as Doug Tunnel’s assistant at the esteemed Brick House Wines, John has logged the numerous hours of careful attention, expert advice and forklift skills necessary to risk his own money on his own undertaking.
John grew up in Portland, and watched his backyard evolve into a world-class wine area. After years of selling wine at some of Portland’s finest restaurants, including a 13-year stint at Higgins, it was John’s desire to learn the craft behind the wines we loved, and to try and approach the process of making wine with the same blend of curiosity, respect and excitement that we feel when drinking it.
Varietals: 100% Pinot Noir
Alcohol: 13.6% by volume
Tasting Notes: This wine is all about the bright fresh purity of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir! They age the wine 7.5 months on it’s lees and rack it directly to tank just prior to bottling. Only 15% new French Oak is used in this wine. The remaining 85% of the barrels were used at least twice before. Bright and juicy with sweet spice, earth and loads of red and black raspberry fruit. This is a wine for early consumption but will easily age a few years too.
Food Pairings: Pinot is one of the most food friendly grapes around. This wine is great with seafood and meat. The ultimate pairing with lighter foods, adding elegance and great acidity!
Jim Lutfy’s thoughts: “A real Pinot Noir with flavors of rhubarb and cherry. Loaded with great mouth feel, with a long lingering finish. It is a fantastic wine for the money. In my opinion, one of the best values coming out of Willamette. Great with seared salmon or heavier fishes.”-JL