The second winery that we visited in Boise was such a surprise! Who knew that we would find Oregon Pinot in Idaho? Turns out the owners, who live in Boise, purchased a 50 acre vineyard site near Salem, Oregon. They worked to build the vineyard and opened the winery in Carlton, Oregon, but moved the winery in 2012 to Boise. They opened their downtown Boise tasting room in March 2013. The grapes will continue to come from their vineyard site in Oregon.
We started our tasting with the 2009 Pinot Gris. It is 98% Pinot Gris and 2% Riesling, and is full of aromas and flavors of honey and pear. It is a more creamy Pinot Gris, rather than being crisp and acidic. I tend more towards the crisp, citrus Pinot Gris, but if you like a creamier Pinot Gris, you will love this one. We had the 2011 Rose next, a light Pinot Noir Rose with strawberry and light cream flavors and vanilla on the finish. It had far less citrus flavor than is typical in a Rose, but the heavier mouth feel and creamy flavor will appeal to many.
The 2010 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir had strong flavors of black cherry and spice – without overpowering tannins. I really enjoyed this wine, and it is very reasonably priced at $25 dollars a bottle.
The last two wines we tasted were two different expressions of the Pinot grapes in their vineyard, the 2009 Judith Marie Pinot Noir and the 2009 Donna Jean Pinot Noir. The Judith Marie has flavors of fig, date and mocha, and a smoky toast flavor on the finish. Jon preferred this one. My favorite was the Donna Jean, with stronger blackberry and plum flavors mised with smoke and wood aromas. Both were excellent, both were young and I’m sure both will be even better after a bit more time in the bottle. Of course, they are both sold out now, so you’ll have to get the 2010, which I have no doubt are just as good.
The owners, Lonnie and Judy, came out and chatted with us for a bit, taking a break from their barrel cleaning chores. They were very friendly folks, and we chatted about marathons and the upcoming wine country half marathon. Sorry there are no pictures, but I was just enjoying the wine so much! It is certainly a place we will visit again!