By now it’s no secret that I really love to blur the line between wine and beer here at Alesong and I am really excited that we are ready to release another wine/beer hybrid – Terroir: Pinot Noir
The 2017 grape harvest in Oregon was a bumper year with vineyards producing record amounts of incredible fruit. Because of this, many wineries were filled to capacity before all the fruit was brought in from the vineyard. This meant that wineries with their own vineyards were forced to leave some of their great fruit on the vine with no intention of harvesting it. Hmmmm, what should we do with all that awesome fruit left on the vine?? I have an idea…
My wife and I made our way out to Benton-Lane on a beautiful fall day with our shears, totes, and dog in toe. We arrived at the vineyard and after a short chat with the winemakers (and a quick taste of this years wines in tank) we were off driving through the vineyard until we stopped at some pristine looking Pinot Noir Pommard Clone. If you had Pinot Spontanée last year I picked the fruit for Terror: Pinot Noir from the same block. Because there was so much fruit left on the vine we really took our time and picked the best-looking and fattest clusters.
Back at the brewery we de-stemmed and gently crushed the berries into a small closed top tank. We then went through the cellar and picked two favorite barrels and added these to the tank. The barrels were from a beer we had brewed a little over a year prior and had a great oak character and a nice soft and subtle acidity that I thought would showcase the fruit well. The beer re-fermented on the grape must for about a month and the resulting beer was barreled back down off the skins into French oak for another couple months of maturation. The beer was then brought back up to the packaging tank and bottle conditioned.
Terroir: Pinot Noir pours burgundy with a lively carbonation. The nose showcases Pinot Noirs earthiness and a pleasant hint of brettanomyces. It drinks smooth and is bursting with pinot-derived fruitiness like raspberries and cherries, then finishes dry and soft. This beer tastes great now and will age gracefully for years to come. This is a very small release so this beer will only be available to our mailing list members.