The site of Mineral Springs, located just east of the town of Carlton, is a source of great excitement to us. Planted to 15 acres of Pinot Noir in 2002 and 2003, and 17 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in 2006, this 250-acre ranch is perched on a mesa with gentle slopes, with commanding views of the surrounding Yamhill-Carlton District.
As a vineyard site, Mineral Springs has an extremely compelling confluence of prime exposure, and uniform, well-drained, pale sedimentary soils. Imagine half of an upside-down bowl facing due south - here the vines absorb the sun from an ideal aspect, from morning through twilight. Unlike many vineyards with small depressions and moist swales, this is a gentle, highly uniform slope. We have high expectations for the vineyard-designated Pinot Noirs and Sparkling Wine that will eventually emerge from this vineyard.
Mineral Springs Vineyard is planted between 380 and 440 feet in elevation. Exposure ranges from southeast to west, with most acreage facing south and southwest. Our soils are crumbly, loamy, pale marine Keasey series sediments such as sandstone and fractured siltstone, mixed with clay. The topsoil layer is rather shallow in many places, and drainage is excellent.
The Mineral Springs Vineyard.
The clonal selections Tony has made for this vineyard are dwarfed by the inherent suitability of this land for viticulture. It is a very special vineyard site; not only does its prime exposure and drainage enable our grapes to ripen reliably in advance of the fall rains, these very old marine sediments imbue the wines with a subtle exoticism and spiciness that announces itself before the new wine comes near a barrel. The 2005 vintage represented the inaugural bottling from this vineyard and features notes of blackberry, black cherries, white pepper, floral notes that recall freesias and roses, and a distinctively exotic personality. We think the wines will consistently express this exotic flare, be sappy and fruit-driven, with lovely acid balance.