Review: Wines of Iris Vineyards, 2021 Releases
Iris Vineyards farms 43 acres of land in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, the bulk of it planted to two varietals, three wines from which we review below. Both are extremely well priced for the quality they offer. Thoughts follow.
2019 Iris Vineyards Pinot Gris Willamette Valley – Very floral, very fragrant. This is a rather in-your-face expression of pinot gris, with heavy notes of white flowers and apricots, meandering toward a lightly sweet character that is laced with honey. One gets the impression of traipsing through a field of daisies as the perky finish arrives, tinged with hints of greenery. B+ / $16
2018 Iris Vineyards Pinot Noir Willamette Valley – This is a straightforward expression of Oregon pinot, offering a tart cherry core tempered by notes of tea leaf, sliding gently into a finish that features some cocoa powder with a blackberry edge. The wine is easygoing and mild, without an overwhelming complexity. Wholly enjoyable but a bit harmless. At this price point, that’s just fine. A- / $22
2018 Iris Vineyards Arete Brut Blanc de Noirs Willamette Valley – This sparkler, made from 100% pinot noir, offers some unusual flavors, driven in large part I imagine by the underlying grapes. Surprisingly dry, even savory, the wine shows notes of thyme and rosemary, before sliding into a fruitier composition of grapefruit, gooseberry, and lemon peel. Moderately fizzy throughout, it finishes on gentle notes of bittersweet citrus peel. Lively and lovely. A- / $34