Location: Eugene, OR
Award-winning Wine Writer. Publisher/Creative Content Producer of TheRealWineJulia.com. Snooth Contributor & Pro Wine Judge. Charmed by the Willamette Valley's earthy, elegant Pinot Noirs with a true zeal for Oregon Chardonnay, Riesling & Sparkling Wine.
Cream of the Crop Oregon Chardonnays
Chardonnays produced by the pioneers of the Oregon Dijon clone.
Before sharing my tasting notes on this wine, let me just say I’m relieved my wine geekiness/giddiness did not show too badly when sharing a table with Robert Brittan. He’s a wine making legend out of Napa Valley. For 16 years, Brittan was the winemaker and vineyard manager at the highly acclaimed Stag’s Leap Winery in Napa. Before that, he made wines for Far Niente and Saint Andrews, also in Napa. In my beginning years of enjoying wine, I absolutely loved Napa Valley’s Far Niente Chardonnay. I would scrounge up pennies to put towards a rare purchase of the wine I loved most of all, one that was not easily affordable for a young twenty-something wine enthusiast. With 30 years of experience behind him, Brittan left Napa to fulfill a dream of making Pinot Noir and other cool climate varietals, like cool-climate Chardonnay, in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. I was about to taste an Oregon Chardonnay produced by legendary Napa Chardonnay producer, Robert Brittan – yes, I was excited. And, the fact that a legendary producer such as Brittan would leave Napa for Oregon…well, that says a whole lot about Oregon and Oregon wine. Brittan Vineyards 2010 Willamette Valley Chardonnay was spectacular. Aromas of key lime pie, caramel and hazelnuts led to lush, rich, complex flavors to match. The balance between acidity and creaminess was outstanding, and a phenomenal structure gave way to incredible zestiness along with a flourishing, elegant finish.