ABOUT: J.K. Carriere is the brain child and muscle of winemaker Jim Prosser. A devotee of Oregon Pinot Noir, he established his first winery in a hazelnut drying barn in 1999 and in 2009 built a more conventional winery on Parrett Mountain, where he has been producing respected and sought after Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Burgundian in style, the wines generally have a higher level of acidity with fine tannins and are built for ageing. And the dinner table, I would order a bottle of Carriere Pinot or Chardonnay for the table off a list without a second thought. All of the grapes for these outstanding wines come from organic and biodynamic vineyards and are made in a low intervention style. It was just in 2008 that he planted Pommard clone Pinot Noir outside the door of his winery on Parrett Mountain, love that commitment to future Pinot Noir. Thanks Jim!
TASTE: We lucked out and got our hands on a case of 2014 Lucidite Chardonnay from JK Carriere and it has aged beautifully. This is a terrific example of a producer in Oregon embracing the style of a cru level Burgundy Chardonnay. The barrel vibe is there and reminded us of how long its been since we drank a white wine with butter and cream. Maybe because malolactic fermentation wasn’t suppressed? A pleasure-filled reunion. The grapes for this 2014 come from the Temperance Hill Vineyard, and organic vineyard at the top of Eola Amity, and has developed aromas and flavors of lemon and pear, almond, butter, cream, cedar, and salt. This is the perfect wine to serve if you want to stimulate the appetite, and probably encourage a discussion about how great Chardonnay can be in Oregon. The flavors and structure are balanced by a skilled hand, the acidity has perfect placement, just a bit higher in register to aid the development that is charmingly underway.
PAIR: Honey roasted vegetables with hazelnuts, goat cheese and walnut white pizza, smoke gouda quiche, roasted squash with a big pad of butter, and Elote.