Louis Jadot’s First Steps in Oregon with Résonance Vineyard Pinot Noir
News Flash: Louis Jadot Retires to Oregon
Well, not exactly, but there’s some truth to the headline. In 2013, Maison Louis Jadot bought their first (!) property outside Burgundy in France. This is all the more impressive given that the firm was formed in 1859. Conservative? Maybe. By my tasting, they “done good”.
Fast Facts about Louis Jadot and Résonance Vineyard
- Louis Jadot is one of the major wine producers in Burgundy, controlling 210 hectares of vineyards in the region.
- The Résonance Vineyard in the Yamhill Carlton section of Willamette Valley is a rare find, with a little under 10 hectares of un-grafted and dry farmed vines.
- Dry farming is not so unusual, but ungrafted vines are rare. Note: the vast majority of vines in Burgundy are grafted due to the phylloxera epidemic in the 1860’s.
- After 42 years as the world renowned winemaker at Louis Jadot, Jacques Lardière “retired” to Oregon to manage the vineyard and the winemaking at Résonance. Some retirement!
- The 2013 is the first Louis Jadot vintage from the vineyard, and they are cautiously proceeding, feeling their way into the differences between Oregon and their home turf. Temperatures in Oregon are similar, but the soil and climate are quite different.
Résonance Pinot Noir Yamhill-Carlton Oregon 2013 ($65 SRP, online here)
Eye: Clear, but just a bit hazy, I would guess it’s unfiltered. Medium intensity ruby color with a pale rim. It’s a bit deeper in color than many Pinot Noirs.
Nose: A bit shy, you need to stick your nose in the glass. Day one, black cherries with a touch of cedar and clean forest floor. The earthy elements emerge more on day two. While shy, this wine has beautiful aromas and is a treat to smell.
Mouth: Medium- body, black cherries, ripe but not overly so. Medium+ acidity and medium+ tannins. Cherries and fresh forest floor linger in a medium+ finish. Strikes the right balance, not lean or tart, not rich and too ripe, it walks a fine line.
Résonance at the Dinner Table
Both Julie and I loved this wine. It was ripe enough and balanced to be enjoyed on its own, as well as absolutely shining at the dinner table. It would obviously age well but I would have a hard time not drinking it early, it’s just so pretty!
Disclosure: I received this wine as a sample from Louis Jadot’s US Importer and distributor. All opinions expressed are my own.
Résonance Vineyard Sale
This final remark comes from Kevin Chambers, the prior owner of Résonance Vineyard:
“It’s not easy to let go of a property you’ve invested your heart and soul in for 24 years like we have, but to be able to pass it to Jacques Lardiere and the team at Mason Louis Jadot is an honor,” Kevin Chambers told Winebusiness.com. “One could hardly think of a better steward to pass the baton too. It’s their first purchase of a vineyard outside of Burgundy, and for it to be Jacques’ retirement project is additionally special.” (quote from winebusiness.com article)