With International Pinot Noir Day approaching on Aug. 18, it is recommended to try the 2017 Angela Vineyards Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. Trust us, this is a crowd pleaser both in the glass and on the table. This wine represents an evolution of this brand, formerly known as Angela Estate. Angela Estate was started in 2006 in Carlton, OR by Antony Beck, and through the 2016 vintage, Ken Wright was at the helm of the winemaking. Since the 2017 vintage, Alban Debeaulieu has taken over as head winemaker and he’s really re-examined the brand and what he wants the wines to express. He’s aiming to create wines that showcase their individualities and essential pleasures, while treading lightly on the earth. This perspective is a reflection of his background and training, both in France and in Oregon. The goal is to return to the craft of wine through thoughtful and intentional choices. Grapes are sourced from carefully selected sites, each managed in an ecologically minded way that is most beneficial for the vineyard and its surroundings. Among other things, only natural yeasts are used in vinifcation, as he is always striving to produce fresh wines that are expressive of place, vintage and craft.
2017 Angela Vineyards Yamhill-Carlton Pinot Noir
Sourced from two organically farmed vineyards in Yamhill-Carlton AVA, one of the more protected, or sheltered, AVAs in the Willamette Valley. Each of these vineyards is farmed organically and without herbicides. After a very gentle extraction, the wine is aged for 12-18 months in barrels on lees. French oak barrels of 228L, and some 500L barrels, are used for fermentation; 30% are new. For the Pinot Noir, a very delicate cap management is utilized. There is no crushing; rather a series of pump overs help to coax the result desired. Either whole berries or whole clusters are in the fermenter. All of this helps to let the ‘place’ speak for itself. Winemaker Alban Debeaulieu says this wine is delicate and the extraction of juice from the grapes is done with a “light hand.”
Aging: 12-18 months
Case Production: 4,421 cases (9L)
Suggested Retail: $38
Not a Pinot fan or want to try the 2018 Angela Vineyards Willamette Valley Chardonnay?
2018 Angela Vineyards Chardonnay Willamette Valley
At harvest, preservation of natural acidity is the goal. Grapes with good acidity allow for fresh and stable wines, and better lend themselves to native yeast fermentations, less sulfur during aging and little to no filtration prior to bottling.
Chardonnay clusters are crushed and press. The must is quickly transferred to French oak barrels of varying sizes and left to ferment by indigenous yeasts. Malolactic fermentation happens sometime the following winter or spring. After spending 12 months in barrels, followed by another six in tank, this wine was bottled in March 2020, lightly fined and unfiltered. Debeaulieu said the Chardonnay is created in a classic cool climate and the wine is long and textural.
100% Chardonnay sourced from the following vineyards:
• Seven Springs in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA, certified LIVE and farmed to biodynamic standards.
• X Omni in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA, certified LIVE and farmed without herbicides.
• Chehalem Mountain Vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains AVA.
• Dupee Valley Vineyard in the McMinnville AVA.
• Johan in the Van Duzer Corridor AVA, farmed biodynamically.
Aging: 10 months
Case Production: 353 cases (9L)
TA: 6.4 g/L
Suggested Retail: $38
Angela Vineyards focuses on wines from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from Oregon’s Willamette Valley. The goal is to return to the craft of wine through thoughtful and intentional choices in the process. Grapes are sourced from carefully selected sites, each managed in an ecologically minded way that is most beneficial for the vineyard and its surroundings. Only natural yeasts are used in vinification, always striving to produce fresh wines that are expressive of place, vintage and craft.
Proprietor Antony Beck, Beck Family Estates
Winemaker Alban Debeaulieu (since 2017)
Assistant Winemaker David Martinez
Viticulturalist Heath Payne
Wines: Angela Vineyards, Yamhill-Carlton Pinot Noir Angela Vineyards, Willamette Valley Chardonnay Angela Vineyards, Willamette Valley Rosé of Pinot Noir (very limited production)
Grape Sources All vineyard sources are certified by LIVE (Low Input Viticulture and Enology), with no herbicide use. Most are also farmed organically or biodynamically. Alban Debeaulieu and Heath Payne work with select partners throughout the Willamette Valley, in the Eola-Amity Hills, Chehalem Mountains and Yamhill-Carlton AVAs to source fruit for these wines. angelavineyards.com