The Winerabblers recently had the opportunity to sample 3 Bells Up Pinot noirs from the 2020 vintage. It was so interesting tasting them side-by-side-by-side, allowing us the chance to revisit each one several times. Matt and I discovered a thread of similarities, along with a few unique differences.
This vintage was a rough one– first the pandemic and then wildfires erupted all over the state during harvest time. The smoke from the fires drifted, and lingered, in Oregon’s many grape-growing regions. Some areas and vineyards were hit worse than others. Every winemaker in the state was forced to make hard decisions without enough information on whether or not their grapes were impacted by the smoke. Those that made wine, did so very carefully, painstakingly taking significant measures to produce the best wines possible.
Nonetheless, wine critics dismiss many of Oregon’s 2020s. However, we encourage you to be open-minded about wines from this vintage. Matt and I have found them to be quite interesting (and delicious) and hope you feel the same.
In my other job, as editor of the Oregon Wine Press, I wrote an in-depth article about the 2020 vintage and smoke. In fact, I interviewed Dave Specter, Bells Up owner and winemaker, and even used some photos taken from the winery. Click here to read it.
Oregon wine: 2020 Bells Up Winery Titan Pinot noir