2008 Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Noir
Image: Google
Image: Oregon Wine

Image: Oregon Wine

This 2008 was very tight upon the first pour, even thirty minutes after opening the bottle; it needed some extra time to breathe and open up. Once it did, it had wonderful earthy aromas of crushed cherry and sweet strawberry with hints of spice. A dry wine with a light body. While I was initially disappointed upon the first taste, this is a wine that grew on me after drinking half a glass. I feel that this wine in particular needs careful attention to be decanted or aerated (whether you believe in this practice or not) to really help it open up and become enjoyable.

Price paid for this bottle was $25.99 which is on the high end as I’ve seen it available elsewhere for $21.99, or less online. If you can buy it for $21 or less, I would suggest giving this Pinot a go. But, if you can’t find it at a reasonable price you should skip it as there are better options available for the money. Rumor has it Costco has some of the most competitive pricing on this particular vintage, but we haven’t verified this. I rate this bottle 88 points.

Did you find this at a better price, agree or disagree with the rating? Talk to me on Twitter @ctfoodandwine

Willamette Valley Vineyards has created and participates in some unique programs focused on sustainability and caring for the land for future generations. Here are just a few examples of their dedication to the environment:

REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE

In 2005, Founder Jim Bernau won permission from the OLCC to include a ten cent recycling refund statement on our wine labels. We offer ten cents for each bottle returned to our tasting room and one dollar for returned shippers. Also, because cork is one of the world’s most sustainable agricultural products, we’ve partnered with Amorim Cork America, SOLV and Yemm & Hart to begin a nationwide recycling campaign. We recycle the corks into high value products, so consider recycling yours. Drop the corks off in our tasting room or, to find other recycling locations, visit ReCorkAmerica.com. As well as recycling natural corks, the company also uses recycled paper throughout the facility, recycled cardboard shippers, and recycles all plastic, aluminum, paper, and cardboard products.

BIOFUEL
In 2005, Founder Jim Bernau launched the employee biodiesel program; offering fifty gallons of biodiesel a month to each employee, at no cost. As many as ten employees use the program and employees, delivery vehicles and tractors fill up onsite or at card-lock stations. To learn more about biodiesel, and our provider, please visit sqbiofuels.com.

FSC CERTIFIED CORK
Willamette Valley Vineyards is the first winery in the world to use cork certified through the Rainforest Alliance to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standards. Cork is a natural, sustainable product where the cork tree is never cut down but continues to sequester carbon and produce oxygen throughout its long life. Learn more by visiting rainforest-alliance.org.

If you’re going to be in the Portland area, coming up at the end of this month is the 7th Annual Oregon Truffle Festival. The festival will be held in and around Eugene Oregon over three brisk winter days from January 27-29, 2012. Created to celebrate the magnificent Oregon truffles as they reach the peak of ripeness in their native soil, it is the first festival of its kind in North America, dedicated to sharing the experience of the chefs, foragers and fans of Oregon’s wild truffles, from their hidden source in the forest to their glory on the table.

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