Gilbert Cellars, Pinot Noir Nouveau 2022, Horse Heaven Hills, Columbia Gorge, WA
This Beaujolais-style Nouveau is fresh, aromatic, and fruit-forward, with notes of berries and rose. It’s in between a rosé and light bodied red, and should be served with a chill.
APPELLATION (AVA): Horse Heaven Hills
REGION: Columbia Gorge
VINEYARD: Chukar Vineyard
GRAPES: Pinot Noir
SOIL: Starbuck loam (stony, shallow layer of silt) over solid basalt
VINIFICATION: Light foot treading on ¼ of the harvest, which was then layered on top of the rest of the harvest in stainless steel tanks that were filled with carbon dioxide and sealed. Partial carbonic maceration of the whole berries for 10 days. Juice was pressed off and finished fermenting in steel tanks. Racked off lees, in stainless steel until bottled unfined and unfiltered.
COLOR: Pale ruby
BODY: Light bodied
PRIMARY AROMAS: Fresh and fruit forward, bright raspberry, rose
FLAVOR: Mineral and fresh, berries and anise, juicy finish
FORMAT: 750 ml
SERVICE AND FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTION: Serve with a slight chill. Serve with a salad with berries and feta and goat’s cheese.
ABOUT THE PRODUCER: Gilbert Cellars is a family-run winery in Yakima, Washington, focusing on handcrafted, small batches of authentic Washington wines, with a strong sense of community and hospitality. With a deep, five generations-old connection to the Yakima Valley farming land (and its own 8200-foot Gilbert Peak!), the Gilbert family and their partners dedicate their energies and skills to create wines that celebrate the terroir and the communities in it. Gloria and Charlie Gilbert, Le Cordon Bleu alumni and world-class hospitality masters, partnered with Justin Neufeld, a Washington winemaking veteran with a deep knowledge of the terroir diversities in Columbia Valley, to bottle the best expressions of Yakima Valley vintage after vintage.
ABOUT THE WINEMAKER: Justin Neufeld, Winemaker
Justin showcases the flavors of the vineyards through each step of the growing and production process. Our resident wine geek, Justin has a degree in molecular biology, but outdoor pursuits (backpacking, climbing)—and a serendipitous introduction to noted Washington winemaker Doug Gore—drove him out of the lab and into the vineyards. He finessed his skills at Chateau St. Michelle, Silver Lake, and Glen Fiona before joining Gilbert Cellars in 2007.
ABOUT THE VINEYARD: Chukar Vineyard
“A stone’s throw from the Columbia River, Nine Canyons Vineyard is tucked amid 250 acres of cherry and apple orchards, just south of the thriving city of Kennewick. Curtiss Gilbert planted its deeply terraced hillsides with grapes in 2009. The soil here is Starbuck loam, a stony, shallow layer of silt that covers a solid layer of basalt. Exceptionally well drained and nonfertile, the loam helps minimize vigor in the vines, allowing for a balanced canopy in the production of low-yield wine grapes. Our first Horse Heaven Hills vineyard, this gem should grow in quality and intrigue.” (gilbertcellars.com)
ABOUT THE LABEL: The label art is by Jackie Jones, made of collage on paper. The artist note is: “The bright flames of the dogwood branches ignite the canyon trails, sparking a perennial memory of light even as the season and the blooms simmer.” (jonesandwest.com)