2014 Domaine Drouhin Dundee Hills Pinot Noir- My first Oregon 2014. Loads of power & showing darker than expected berry notes. Youthfully exuberant in all the best ways. Once this breathes a bit the structural nuance comes forward to balance the big fruit. Sometimes loving Drouhin in Oregon is like loving the Beatles or the Stones. You’ve been there a lot, but the reason for the staying power is pretty obvious.
2012 Wenzlau Sta Rita Hills Estate Chardonnay- Fleshy & bright with an effortless palate weight. A healthy tension between lushness & acidic structure. Oak accents, but doesn’t dominate. I think their Pinot gets more attention, but I’ll take this one anytime.
At the risk of being branded a heretic:I think Chardonnay is the thing SRH does best.
Not heresy in my book, but I haven’t had much exposure to SRH Chardonnay beyond this and some very small amounts of Liquid Farm which I also thought was excellent. Suggestions for others?
I can’t exactly claim huge amounts of evidence to support my theory. Two of the main bottlings that brought me to this conclusion were Sea Smoke Gratis (back in the day when they would throw you a free bottle on the mailing list) and Clos Pepe Hommage a Chablis (no longer being made). Chablis is my generally my exemplar for Chardonnay, and I feel like the SRH Chards I’ve enjoyed most have all the great acidity and minerality of Chablis along with a higher intensity of fruit without making things too sweet.
I might suggest Brewer-Clifton and Au Bon Climat (Sanford & Benedict) as good starting points to try some more.