2014 vintage notes
Elk Cove, one of Oregon's first 10 wineries, positively knocked it out of the park in 2014 — an incredibly strong line-up from one of our pioneering wineries. It's no wonder they refer to 2014 as a vintage of a lifetime. From their awesome value La Sirene to their sublime Reserve and single vineyard Pinots, Elk Cove has one of the top line-ups of any Oregon winery.
We love their whole suite of 2014 Pinot noir, and after considerable thought, we decided on the wonderful Five Mountain. Gorgeous and streamlined, opening with perfumed red fruits and crushed minerals, then fanning out with dark raspberry and cherry with shadings of Santa Rosa plum. Verve-filled, it keeps giving more and more. Like a ‘50s camping trailer, this wine thought of everything.
93 points Wine Advocate: “From a vineyard planted in 1978 by Dick Ponzi, the 2014 Pinot Noir Five Mountain has a very well-defined bouquet with real mineralité coming through. This is extremely well focused. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, real tension and vigor with fine tannin, dark cherry and red plum fruit leading to a nicely poised, Volnay-like finish that is pure class. This comes highly recommended. Yeah...I like Elk Cove. I like the cut of their jib. These are examples of Oregon fermented grape juice that exude precision, freshness, intensity and for want of a better word, sheer drinkability. These are the kind of wines that I sample professionally but leave thinking how much I would just like to abscond with them and share them with friends. Winemaker Adam Campbell is a dab hand at not just Pinot Noir but also white varieties, in particular producing two very worthy Chardonnay and Rieslings from the 2014 vintage. The former is a welcome return for the grape variety, following their acquisition of four acres of 12-year-old vine in the Goodrich Vineyard. His Pinot Noirs were extremely consistent across the entire range, a winemaker who frankly did not seem to let the ball slip once throughout the season. Their 2014 Pinot Noir Reserve will need some bottle age, but will surely evolve into one of the standouts of a very good growing season, while the 2014 La Bohème Pinot Noir and Five Mountain Pinot Noir are both exquisite expressions of the grape variety that help put Oregon on the world stage. This was certainly one of my most impressive tastings during my visit: a combination of old vine stock and careful winemaking by a skillful winemaker.”
Elk Cove Vineyards purchased Five Mountain Vineyard in 2005 after leasing the site for several years. After taking full control of the vineyard they found certain lots especially worthy of single vineyard status.
This historic vineyard was planted in 1978 by the Ponzi family. The original 4.2 acres of old vines are comprised of Pommard clone and the entire vineyard is set on a steep southeast slope in the Chehalem Mountains AVA, overlooking “five mountains” in the Cascade Range most widely seen from the Willamette Valley. This vineyard was an important element in the early Ponzi Reserve Pinots and has also been a single vineyard selection from a number of premier Oregon wineries over the years.
Five Mountain is now sustainably farmed by Elk Cove Vineyards and comprises a total of 30 acres including the original old vine Pommard Pinot Noir, younger Dijon Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Gewurztraminer and Riesling.