Goodfellow Relative Quality

I’m new to Goodfellow, a couple of cases in the cellar, but only have drunk a couple bottles. Poured a Fir Crest into the decanter tonight and it got me thinking…

I’m curious to get a take from the more experienced Goodfellow drinkers (homers and fanboys included).

How would you rank the quality of their single vineyard cuvees using the widely used Burgundy vineyard scale i.e. “this drinks like a solid 1er cru”? Would you rank different cuvees differently?

I’m not talking about OR wine in general or what the actual vineyards would be rated, but more how the Goodfellow wines drink, because we all know that there are Burg producers making 1er quality wine from village vineyards and those making village quality wine from GC vineyards.

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I really think it’s personal preference (kinda like burgundy), but nobody knocks the Whistling Ridge wines.

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I would not “rank” them as I don’t know all the various wines well enough. That said I don’t see it as a relevant question for a region that has only been around for 50 years, and for many areas way less than that.

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So the 2018 Fir Crest I just decanted for the last 90 minutes I think is drinking at a village level. The bouquet and front end is solid, but it’s lacking a bit of weight and finish I would want in a 1er. It’s so young maybe it will flesh out with more time.

As I said in the OP, this isn’t about the terroir, this is about the wines themselves and how they show to you. Maybe people have other ways of ranking wines, but personally I use the AOC Burg classification as back of the napkin ranking algorithm.

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So you rank baseball players according to soccer rules. Got it!

In fairness, Bill Simmons made a career (and many others’) doing stuff like this, and it can be a fun exercise.

Fun, yes.

Also pointless.

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This feels like a square peg - round hole kind of question. As such, not sure you’re going to get much in the way of helpful answers. Just read the enormously long, and loaded-with-good-information, Goodfellow thread.

I’m probably not as experienced with Goodfellow or Burgundy as you are looking for, but when has that ever stopped anybody from replying on the internet? So with that disclaimer, for my tastes Goodfellow is every bit the equal of Burgundy in the price range that I play in, which is typically $30 to $100, sometimes a little more.

I’m definitely a fanboy.

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I haven’t found this to be a very useful exercise. There’s a few tastings where people blind the top Oregon, German, and burgundy cuvées and generally it’s not particularly difficult to identify which region the wines are from. In general I think the goodfellow wines are very well made, but the top cuvées need a lot of time, likely more so than most but not all village burgundy.

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The whole point of the burgundy system is that the terroir is paramount, so I’m not sure the way you’re framing this is going to get the answers you want.

However, I would be really interested in Marcus’s thoughts on “grand cru” sites in Oregon.


if youre hoping to get rankings of the vineyards that Marcus and Megan use, I think you’re gonna have a bad time. even in other threads its pretty apparent that people have their favorites, but theyre all good sites. My personal favorite is whistling ridge. I would say if I wanted to take overall complexity of the blends and try to compare it to burgundy levels, the single vineyards will depend on the vineyard and year but compare well with burgundies that are 2-3x the price easily. the heritage wines I think stand up to well made premier cru bottlings (again, easily 2-3x the price of the wines from Goodfellow.)

the overall major point I cant emphasize enough when talking about Goodfellow is the quality you get at the price point. its just ridiculous.



For my palate I’ve found I prefer 7+ years of age on them.


At risk of offending (i) Marcus/Megan, (ii) Goodfellow fans, (iii) Burgundy fans, (iv) Burgundy winemakers, (v) retailers, (vi) those who see every poll as a flawed poll, including this thread and (v) the Internet generally:

With respect to Heritage wines

  1. I think the Heritage can be, dollar-for-dollar, more pleasurable than Cote de Nuits at the equivalent price point. This is not a blanket statement. One such nuance is the pricing assumption: Marcus offers WB very attractive pricing below ‘MSRP’ while I usually have to pay something above MSRP for Burgundy (my all-in delivered cost). For me, that means the Goodfellow Heritage wines are the same/more expensive than many Bourgogne and cheaper than many Village wines. Accordingly, I am saying I believe the Heritage wines are better than most Bourgogne and many Village. A couple years ago, I once emailed Marcus calling them “Cote de Nuit Village Slayers” for the $50 tariff (and apologized if he viewed this as insulting).
  2. I think the Heritage wines are more consistent and you are less likely to have a ‘miss’ here than in Burgundy. This reliability factors into QPR. I loosely define a ‘miss’ as having a woefully shut down wine, a corked wine, an out-of-balance wine (for me, a burg with too much acid/too little fruit) or a wine that non-wine geek will dislike (probably the same acid issue).
  3. I think this QPR can also, at times, apply to 1er Cru level. I, through operator error, opened a 2016 Hubert Lignier MSD VV. It was so shut down it sucked. A 2016 Goodfellow Whistling Ridge would have been more pleasurable. This was operator error, but nonetheless one 2016 would have been more pleasurable in the glass than the other. Indeed, I now remember emailing Marcus another example a year ago as well where this happened with a 2017 Nuits 1er Cru… and I told him I scored his wine the same points (my attempt for objective pleasurability) as another wine which cost 3x as much. In theory this 2017 wasn’t supposed to be shut down, but I was told to ascribe it to it being shut down (which I don’t myself 100% believe, but time will tell).

With respect to Oregon vs. Burgundy

  1. I don’t think Oregon hits the highs of Burgundy. Texture, nose, grip, concentration. I don’t expect the Goodfellows to hit the highs of that MSD VV (but at 3x the cost, I’m not expecting it to).
  2. I personally like a few Oregon wines. I like the sappy fruit, when married with elegance and good structure – which I find in Goodfellow wines.
    3)I do think Oregon is a viable replacement for Bourgogne and Village. It factors in my thinking that (i) I like certain Oregon wines and (ii) I can afford to scratch the Burgundy itch at the 1er Cru and Grand Cru levels. Also to be clear, I still buy Burgundy at the Bourgogne/Village level (e.g., I just made a request for a case of Nuits Borgogne last week).
  3. I imagine Oregon wines will keep getting better. I prefer Marcus’s recent vintages than some of his older ones, and see no reason why his future vintages won’t get better and better as Marcus/Megan are humblingly committed to their craft.

I reflect this in my purchasing habbits

  1. For Cote de Nuits, I focus on 1er Cru and Grand Cru. I don’t think any wine in the world can replace these wines in my cellar.
  2. I no longer indiscriminately buy Nuits Bourgogne and Village, but only focus on those producers I particularly like and want a couple bottles to enjoy the style young while the 1er/Grand Cru age.
  3. For 3-15YR storage, I recently picked up a case each of Goodfellow’s 2019 Lewman Heritage (I have a TN up on WB), 2018 Whistling Ridge Heritage (I have a TN up on CT), 2017 Whistling Ridge Heritage (Marcus recommendation to me). I think this is no brainer value and Goodfellow pricing for WB is a steal. I wonder if its enough.
  4. For now, I sent a mixed case of Goodfellow singletons to my home to try out now, to learn more about the wines and their aging curve (all 3 of those heritage wines, plus 2016 Whistling Ridge heritage, plus a bunch of non-heritage wines… including 2014 WR, 2014 Durant, 2016 WR, 2019 Richards Cuvee, etc.).

Sappy fruit? I would never describe the Goodfellow wines with that term. In fact it is the un-sappiness that I like about them, the restraint combined with structure.

If others are interested, I’m happy to set up a blinded test of Goodfellow vs. Burgundy. Open 6 of these Goodfellows against 6 red Burgundies of same vintage and same/higher price point. I think this will answer the question at the Bourgogne/Village level and perhaps shed some light as to which Burgundy producer Marcus is most similar to (if there is one at all in the set).

This would be in Manhattan. If there are at least 2 others are interested in this and doing just a group of 3, I’ll organize it and we can take it from there. My guess is we will have a larger group than 3.


I use the word sappy in the context of pure, crystalline fruit with the fruit holding some presence in the wine (e.g. the 2019 Lewman Heritage). I don’t intend to use the word in context of an overripe fruit bomb. I use it independent of structure.