A tale of two sides (soils) in Justice Vineyard leads to a Pinot with two sides: dark and showy; wound up and energetic. The two sides begin to merge quickly, with electricity pulsing through bold, beautiful darkness. An exotic, mouthwatering fruit note appears -- salt flecks on passion fruit -- before the striking blue-black fruited intensity of Justice establishes its hold. Accents of violets and sage add depth and and dimension (as if it needed more!), creating a dynamic, powerful Pinot. It's deliciously engaging now while boasting the kind of structure to reward a decade of age.
Justice Vineyard, owned and farmed by the Bethel Heights family, describes Justice: "marrying volcanic topsoil with the ancient sea-floor beneath, our Justice Vineyard tells a captivating tale of two soils. The result is a taut, vibrating structure enveloped in ample, dark flesh." Exactly.
Violin's Will Hamilton spent several years with Justice Vineyard as his daily winemaking view; he made his wines at Walter Scott until the 2017 vintage. - Marcus
Justice Vineyard was planted by the Casteel Family of Bethel Heights Vineyard between 1999 and 2001, after more than 20 years of farming their adjacent vines using organic and certified sustainable methods. While it has been used in Estate Production for BH, certain parcels have been sold over the years to some of Oregon’s finest producers. Having known the Casteels since 2006 and looking out over the vineyard for several years making wine at Walter Scott (located on Justice Vineyard), it was without hesitation that I took the opportunity to work with this wonderful and dedicated family. Under the direction of Ted Casteel and their long time team (who also planted the vines and additionally farm Temperance Hill, Wren, and Logsdon Ridge Vineyards), Justice is managed to the highest standard, and by its nature has proven to be a low yielding vineyard for Pinot Noir. The wines have a distinctive structural tone, a sort of bold intensity that sets them apart.
The furthest West side of Justice became available in 2018, this version coming exclusively from the 1.2 acre “DDW” block, the only wine produced from a single clone in the portfolio (777). The vines see some late day shading from the tree line along Bethel Heights Road, and the deeper volcanic soils allow for better balance and vigor than other parts of the site. A 3 ton fermentation with 20% whole cluster, the framework maintains the strength and power expected of the vineyard, with a gorgeous core of red fruit and spice that persists throughout. Less dense than the 17 version, but the textural and aromatic openness lends a more elegant and classic touch to this bottling. Aged on lees for 14 months in one new and three previously filled French Oak barrels. Assembled in tank six weeks before bottling on January 24th, 2020. 13.1% Alcohol. 75 cases made.