Our understanding of Seven Springs grows day by day, block by block, row by row, and vine by vine. In approaching Seven Springs' oldest vines, we look back at this vineyard's rich history.
How Anden Came to Be
For a brief period, following the divorce of Seven Springs founders Al MacDonald and Joni Weatherspoon, the vineyard was cleaved in two. Joni retained the vineyard's upper half and the name Seven Springs, while Al christened the lower portion 'Anden', an elision of their children's names; Andrew & Kristen.
The lower half of the vineyard is home to Seven Springs' original plantings and thusly its oldest vines. Planted in 1984, here you find Pommard and Wädenswil clones of Pinot Noir planted on their own roots. These vines represent the origins of what would become one of Oregon's benchmark sites.
For the diligent wine sleuth among you, there can still be found bottles of Anden Vineyard Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and even Gamay from the 2002 through 2006 vintages. St. Innocent, Torii Mor, Patricia Green and Amity all produced Anden vineyard-designate bottlings.
Evening Land's Anden Pinot Noir
Our Anden Pinot Noir celebrates the history of Seven Springs', focusing on the oldest corner of the vineyard as it slowly succumbs to the ravages of phylloxera. Here, at mid-slope, the first Pinot Noir vines planted at Seven Springs still produce a delicate and savory wine. We hand-harvest the smallest and most beautiful clusters from the oldest and most disease-stricken vines then ferment them on the stems. We raise the wine in 100% new Ermitage barrels and bottle the wine without filtration. The resulting wine is delicate, fragile, and transfixing: a subdued and timeless interpretation of Pinot Noir that contrasts well with the more forthright and taut La Source bottling.
Opening with a lightly smoky, match-strike reductive nose that continues into the palate, this wine transforms with air into meaty, savoury notes with hints of graphite that are delicious. At its core are dark berries with fresh-cut bramble and loads of sapidity. The tannins are fine and resolved alongside glittering acidity and plenty of length. This wine continues to evolve and drink well, long into day five after opening, which speaks very well to its ageing potential. While still well balanced with fruit, this is the most savoury of the Evening Land Vineyard Pinots in a way that is very pleasing. Carries the oak seamlessly.
I am impressed with this wine.
-Elaine Chukan Brown