Winemaker Ian Burch discusses the A-List new releases, and what makes them so unique.
Ian Burch, Winemaker
The vine canopies are fully lush and green, the berries are pea-sized, and as I scan the vineyards, the balance in growth is impeccable. The rainiest season on record has allowed our soils to store an abundance of water that our vines need to produce healthy clusters. It’s a refreshing change of pace from the string of dryer growing seasons we have had in recent years. With a cool and rainy start, we anticipate a later harvest in 2022. Halloween this year will look a bit different—instead of knocking on doors and asking for candy with my children, I’ll be knocking on barrels to see how full they are.
Normally, we pick the fruit about 90-100 days after bloom. Since we called bloom on Independence Day, that puts us picking in October. It’s wonderful to be unhurried this vintage. We’re able to rack the current wines off their lees and return them to barrel to rest over harvest. Now, as I write this, an unusually long heat wave has set in here in the Willamette Valley. We know now that the extremes have become extremely common. Our vines, however, are resilient. They’re made so thanks to minimal cultivation and plenty of protective microflora. Our aim is to soften the effects of extreme weather (hot and cold) by giving the vine the support system it needs, namely by way of microbial diversity.
In preparation for harvest, our cellar hand Nicholas is cooking a variety of meals for us to freeze and have on hand when those long nights of work begin. Nicholas and Denise are new to the production team and eager to see how we make wine at Archery Summit. Corey and I could not think of better people to be working with!
You will be pleased to find some wine that we held back for you to enjoy. Think of it as perfectly cellared Pinot Noir that you can open and enjoy without having to worry about your friend opening it prematurely (and without permission) at a party. Both the 2016 and 2018 vintages are ripe, fresh, and generous. We set them aside then thinking you’d really like how evolved they are now, and how they’ll continue to do so for some time. This is a wine release strategy we would love to continue!
September A-list Releases
2018 Arcus Pinot Noir – All A-list members
Arcus, meaning ‘bow’ in Latin, describes our 39 acre estate vineyard that wraps around both sides of a small valley in the heart of the Dundee Hills. Arcus Vineyard is the oldest vineyard of the Archery Summit estates, planted in 1973. Rocky and technically challenging, it offers a singular sense of grandeur that tends to rub off on its vineyard-designate wines.
With strawberry rhubarb driving the nose and a palate made of raspberry and currant, the 2018 Arcus Pinot Noir is tied tightly to the red end of the fruit spectrum.
2018 Red Hills Estate and Summit Exclusive
Our Red Hills Estate is a 23 acre vineyard in the Dundee Hills AVA. This gentle, south-facing slope ranges in elevation from 360 to 570 feet and is composed of basaltic Jory soil. Vines here range from 20 year-old selfrooted Pommard clones planted to 800 vines per acre, to Dijon clones planted to 4,800 vines per acre. Farming is meticulous and detailed, utilizing sustainable practices. Relatively warm and wonderfully consistent, Red Hills Vineyard is rooted to a gentle slope on the north end of the Dundee Hills.
An incredible 2018 vintage magnifies all the qualities we appreciate most about the Red Hills Vineyard of Archery Summit. Cocoa, lavender,
candied black cherry, rose, and ripe strawberry coalesce atop a savory, soil and- mineral-driven nose.
2016 Red Hills Estate and Summit Exclusive
Our 2016 Red Hills Vineyard Pinot Noir is graceful and seductive, inviting further contemplation with hints of dried Porcini, blood orange, fresh
mulberry, and black tea leaves. Plush flavors of ripe blueberry and black raspberry are laid overtop a distinct note of freshly tilled sweet earth.
The lengthy and elegant finish is highlighted by a touch of Douglass fir and freshly baked mushroom tart.
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