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Oregon Pinot noir – Ebony Pinots from Chris Mazepink

 

Read more about Ebony Wines and Chris Mazepink

Read about the Oregonian’s recognition of the 2010 Ebony “The Quarry” Pinot noir on May 22, 2012.

 

Tasted with Chris Mazepink yesterday – such a generous man, he spent quite a bit of time with me and my sister, who is visiting on vacation, and he gave her such a nice introduction to Oregon wine.

Chris is winemaker at Benton Lane and the wines are already benefiting from his expertise. The 2008′s are considerably better than any I’ve had from them before, and his vineyard management, as well as his inspired winemaking, put the next Benton Lane vintages on my “must try” list.

It’s his own label, Ebony, whose wines blew me away. He made the two 95 point Shea Homer Pinots when he was there (2003 – 2007 vintages) along with about 15 additional highly rated wines – from both Wine Spectator and Robert Parker.

His wines are a lot like his Shea wines but he’s gone up a step and has his own voice/style.  He’s working with the Olenik vineyard’s unique soil – minerals, very intriguing nose that’s not fruit, not spice, something a lot more – and he definitely “over produces” – the “Quarry” at $30 is amazing and the Olenik is pretty much unforgettable and at $45 it’s worth more. Both are worth more than they cost. Imho.

Chris Mazepink has pulled off something few winemakers do – the wines are unique. He says something different with his Pinots – they’re so much more than the many Pinots that are just fine – well made, acceptable, nothing wrong with them – but utterly boring – yet another Pinot noir. He has something to say and it’s wonderful.

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