Easter TNs: The 2019 Walter Scott single vineyard Chardonnays

My oldest daughter and my sister-in-law visited for Easter yesterday, so I grilled up some Salmon, and started with a bunch of cheese & smoked sausages for a pretty relaxing afternoon. I think this is the first time I tried all four of the WS single vineyard Chardonnay releases at one sitting, and one thing that is easily apparent is that 2019 was another very good vintage across the board for this winery. No formal voting for WOTD, but my wife clearly liked the X-Novo best, and my sis-in-law preferred the Freedom Hill. The Sojeau is a great new addition to the WS lineup - it had the most reductive nose of the four on opening (which I don’t mind a bit), but this is a focused wine that will only get better with more time in the bottle, so if you haven’t tried this yet, consider picking up a couple bottles.


  • 2019 Walter Scott Chardonnay Freedom Hill Vineyard - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley (4/4/2021)
    My first time looking at the ‘19 WS Freedom Hill bottling. Young but also reasonably accessible at this point. Tart white fruit and lively acidity on the palate. I’m enjoying this.
  • 2019 Walter Scott Chardonnay Seven Springs Vineyard - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Eola - Amity Hills (4/4/2021)
    On opening, the nose here is less reductive than the Sojeau but more so than the Freedom Hill. This is fairly clenched on the palate, though. It is still enjoyable, but it will take some time before this wine fully spreads its wings.
  • 2019 Walter Scott Chardonnay Sojeau Vineyard - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Eola - Amity Hills (4/4/2021)
    My 2nd time checking out the newest addition to the Walter Scott single vineyard Chardonnay lineup. I just tried a glass of the ‘19 Freedom Hill, and the nose here has a stronger reductive note. Similar on the palate to the Freedom Hill. Like a fine white Burgundy, these are wines that can be appreciated on release but also hold the promise for significant positive future development with additional time in the bottle. This vineyard is a nice addition for WS, and at this point I have a slight preference for it over the Freedom Hill.
  • 2019 Walter Scott Chardonnay X-Novo Vineyard - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Eola - Amity Hills (4/4/2021)
    The 4th single vineyard Chardonnay from Walter Scott in this vintage, and from a pricing standpoint their top of the line. This is more open than the Seven Springs was, and at this point most similar to the Sojeau. Off the four wines today, another strong set of wines from Walter Scott. In terms of reductive notes on the nose, this is similar to the Seven Springs and less than the Sojeau.

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Sounds like a great line up!

4 people 4 bottles…berserker theorem [berserker.gif]

[worship.gif]

RT

Thanks for taking 4 four the team Bob!

I’ve been tempted to open one soon. Am I correct in inferring you feel the Freedom Hill is most accessible?

Thanks and hope you are well.

Best,

Todd

Yes, the Freedom Hill definitely felt like the wine that was most ready. The Sojeau is pretty cool as well - very different than the Freedom Hill, but appealing in its own way.

Thanks for the notes Bob. I haven’t popped any of those yet. Will try and keep my hands off.

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Popped a 17 Freedom Hill last night. Seemed really tight/reductive. With a little air, got a little interesting matchstick, but not much fruit profile or mineral. Recorked after a glass and will revisit tonight with a light decant.

I participated in the Walter Scott 2019 Release tasting via Zoѳm yesterday (April 17, 2021).
The winery sent 3.4 oz. bottles of their eight new releases – all 2019. Cured meat and cheese and other snacks were also included in the package.
The whole experience was well organized, informative and enjoyable. Without opportunities for visits to wineries, this was a fantastic opportunity to taste across the full line-up of wines, and see the differences provided by a vineyard.

The wines were:
2019 Pinot Noir -
Freedom Hill Vineyard
X Novo Vineyard
Temperance Hill Vineyard
Sojeau Vineyard

Pinot Noir:
I’ll spare you my full tasting notes but will state that the 2019 Pinots were delicious. Whole cluster of 10% (Temperance Hill) or 15% was used in 3 of the wines and 1, the Freedom Hill, had 0%. That whole cluster offers a savory and herbal element to the 3 wines in which used.
The Pinots were listed at 13.5%. Wonderfully balanced. Approachable now but they have the qualities that support aging.

Chardonnay:
The Chardonnays stood out for me. The wines were listed at 13% abv. During the Zoom, winemaker/owner Ken Pahlow stated that the range was from 12.8% to 13.1%.
While there were similarities, each was quite different. All had a beautiful floral note balanced by a sea-spray/saline element along with citrus. X Novo and Sojeau showed more white stone fruit and a richer mouthfeel than the others. Seven Springs was a bit lighter and had a stronger saline side. Freedom Hill was super-fresh and zesty.
Each presented qualities of elegance, depth of flavors, and mouth-watering acidity.
Delicious.

The whole experience - while a bit pricey - was fantastic.

I did not get the reductive note that the OP found in the Sojeau Chardonnay. I also thought the Seven Springs was open and expressive. Perhaps the different bottling (3.4 ounce bottles vs. the 750ml bottles) was the reason.

I just Pobega’d the 2019 Rock Salt Chardonnay. I hadn’t realized it was even available when I had posted these notes earlier this month, but I’ve now added it for “completeness”. This is fairly accessible on opening, but also has a acerbic note on the finish. I’m going to have to try this side-by-side with one of my remaining bottles of the 2018, which at this early juncture was one of my favorite bottles in the 2018 WS lineup.

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