TN: 2017 Andrew Rich Pinot Noir Volcanic (USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley)

  • 2017 Andrew Rich Pinot Noir Volcanic - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley (8/26/2021)
    First time with this producer, and to be honest, only grabbed a couple bottles at the local Costco because on sale under $20. First thing you notice is the bright RED cherry/raspberry fruit…Cru Bojo came to mind! Needs some airtime as it starts off a little muted…as it opens, has a wonderful fresh crushed cherries vibrancy to it…little sappy and grapey…very pretty potpourri and sandalwood spiced florals…whiffs of white pepper lite up the nostrils…elegant and silky smooth…has some mineral structure to it…crushed rock grip…underbrush rusticity…stem funk…great balance of cherry liqueured sweetness to dryness…no heat…VERY tasty and totally crushable! Would be happy with this at $35…but $19 is steal! (93 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker


Buzz you’re throwing me off with this pool in the background. Your cellar is one of the most recognizable images for me on this site. I always make a point to read your notes no matter the wine. I always find the wines interesting and the notes insightful.

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Well thank you! I feel like I need to change up the “scenery” from the cellar pics…feel like they get monotonous…just like my backsplash pics use to be.


Always have enjoyed Andrew’s wines. Haven’t stopped by while in Oregon to try them much as he is making wines at the Carlton WineMaker’s studio. Every time I go there you get wines from a couple of producers that are making great wines like Andrew and Hamacher and then some that are just meh…


$19 is grand larceny for a wine as good as Andrew Rich. He is underrated in the Willamette Valley and I promote his wines whenever I get the chance. He produces at the Carlton Winemakers’ Studio so if you make it to Wine Country I would recommend a stop there.


And then you get gems such as Lavinea who branch out on their own, rightfully so. I am very much a fan of Andrew Rich. He came to Pinot in the City in Chicago in 2019 and my entire group was impressed with his wines.

I like the CWS. Yes, it can be hit or miss but that’s the beauty of it.

Yep. There are people like Andrew who are just interested in making great Pinot and there are some who are interested in building a Taj Mahal at the top of the Dundee Hills. I prefer the latter.


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You’ve never seemed the Taj Mahal atop the Dundee Hills type Brian (unless the Red Barn at Maresh counts as a Taj Mahal).

Andrew’s wines are lovely. He always has a tremendous sense of balance in them. He’s also a very thoughtful and intelligent long-time industry veteran. Surprised the Volcanic is $20 at Costco, but that has to be a phenomenal QPR.

Also, the Carlton Winemaker Studio just sold to Hampton Wood Products(a Portland based lumber company).

The Studio was perhaps the first well known wine industry cooperative space, and an early example of sustainable building practices. The founders also really helped pave the way, with the Tax and Trade Bureau, to make it possible for multiple wineries to operate in one space.

Has the new owner made any public statements about plans for the future of the CWS?

I brokered this transaction.

The former owners were very intent on finding a buyer who would maintain and expand upon what they built.

The Hampton’s plan to run The Studio as it has been and all of the employees are remaining. They are not new to the wine industry; the Hampton’s own two Willamette Valley vineyards, Tall Tree and Fennwood.

I would anticipate new investment to take The Studio to the next level.



It will be really interesting to see what they do with it. And it was really uplifting to see the original partners sell such a successful idea to another local company.

I don’t think many people realize how groundbreaking the studio was when it was founded. It was the first Leeds certified winemaking facility built, and lobbying to allow multiple wineries to work in the same space, via Alternating Premise, made it possible for many small wineries, including my own, to grow and prosper.


Many in the Oregon industry owe a debt of gratitude to Eric Hamacher for championing the AP concept 20+ years ago.

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Oops, I meant former not latter. It is fun to visit the Taj Mahals on the top of the Dundee Hills but I don’t like to pay $100+ for Pinot.

Oops. I got all screwed up on that post.

No I much prefer a visit to Belle Pente or Westrey chatting it up with the winemaker anyday than someone feeding me a line on nonsense at that Dundee Hills Taj Mahal.

Both Andrew and Eric don’t get enough credit for their delicious wines, let alone their related efforts.

Is Jay Somers still making his wines at the Studio?


Jay has moved from the Studio and rented a winery space in Carlton in conjunction with a Custom Crush client that he is using 2021 and beyond.

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Thanks Andy. Hope you and Sue are doing great!


We are! Harvest is in motion and there is lots of excitement in the air!!

Hope you and Joanne are doing well, staying safe and sane.