Rollin Soles has played a significant role in shaping the wine culture of the Willamette Valley. He’s been making wine for over 30 years in Oregon, with a 25 year stint as Argyle Wine’s winemaker. In 2001 Rollin planted his own vineyard, Wits’ End and, in 2013 he left Argyle in order to devote all his attention to his own winery.
This Pinot noir is a combination of fruit from the Wits’ End vineyard, located in the Chehalem Mountains AVA, as well as from Marsh Vineyards, in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA. Rollin alluded to using some pretty unique winemaking methods for this wine before aging it for 18 months.
On the nose we detected raspberry jam, cherries, eucalyptus and mocha-chocolate notes while we swirled our glasses. Once we took a sip, we were rewarded with some flavors uncommon in most Willamette Valley Pinot noirs. At first sip we tasted a medley of summer berries and tart cranberries with high acid levels. But on our second sip, the flavors deepened into more earthy notes of pencil lead, mocha and nutmeg with a long, memorable finish. The name is fitting– this wine does stalk your palate and your mind.
This wine would be great paired with a turkey dinner, vegetable ragu served over a garlic polenta or a cedar-plank grilled salmon.
Michele Francisco, a founder and regular contributor to Winerabble, a blog primarily about Pacific Northwest wines, is living the dream in Portland, Oregon. Her passion leads some to believe she's got wine running through her veins. Contact Michele at firstname.lastname@example.org & be sure to visit her online portfolio at www.michelefrancisco.com.