Lachini Vineyards produces 100% Pinot Noir, using gentle, hand managed techniques. Such practices include hand-harvesting, sorting and use of gravity-flow processes. Other non-interventionist techniques, such as the use of native yeasts, whole cluster fermentations and minimal racking, insures the bottled wines express much of their natural greatness from their vineyard origins.
Isabelle Dutartre is presently making Lachini's wines and is also the winemaker for De Ponte Cellars. Isabelle has a great deal of experience making superior wines and has been in the wine industry for over 20 years. Most notably, she was trained in classical Burgundian Enology and Viticulture in Beaune, France and worked extensively under the Maison Joseph Drouhin. Isabelle has made wine for ten vintages in Burgundy, France. She has also had experience with Pinot Noir from Oregon, where she previously worked for five vintages at Domaine Drouhin of Oregon. Isabelle resides in the south of France and makes frequent trips to Oregon.
Lachini Vineyard's forty-five acres are located in Newberg, the heart of the North Willamette Valley, approximately 30 miles Southwest of Portland. It only took one look for us to know that this was a unique and special site. Our sloping Estate Vineyard is comprised of Willakenzie series soils-ranging from 18 to 48 inches in depth. The shallow, fine silt loam over sedimentary rock has lower water capacity due to it's sandy consistency and thus forces the vines to compete and develop deep root systems. The emerging terror of these dark-brown to yellowish-brown soils reveal Pinot Noir wines with strong earthy notes, chocolate, and a definite flavour of anise and spice. We purchased the property in 1998 and planted the first five acres with Pinot Noir (Pommard clone) in June of 1999, after clearing and natural site preparation. In the following '00, '01, and '02 growing seasons, we planted additional blocks that now entail just over 20 acres of planted Pinot Noir. Most recent plantings include Dijon and Wadenswil clones.
Subsequently, with the 2003 growing season upon us, Lachini Vineyard currently has fifteen acres bearing fruit. Over the next five years, the entire vineyard will come into full production, with maximum planting to 30 acres on this site. Vineyard spacing is 4' X 6" or roughly 1700 vines per acre, which forces the vines to compete and allows us to produce premium quality wines. We seek to limit our annual production under 2 tons/acre; but of course, mother nature doesn't always cooperate. For the '01 and '02 harvests, we limited yields to one cluster per shoot, and essentially dropped nearly 60 percent of our fruit to ripen the best clusters. Lachini Vineyards uses drip irrigation to help establish our young vines and control the amount and timing of water delivered to each plant. We are presently experimenting with administering nutrients such as compost tea direct to each plant.
VINEYARD MANAGEMENT from
- Natural, organic, elemental-spray
solutions to combat vine diseases like mildew and botrytis.(primarily
2003 VINTAGE REPORT
From the winery
This year, we initiated the transition to the
L.I.V.E. program and are impressed with the initial results.