Rain Saved 2015 Oregon Pinots

Meet Bill and LaRue Stoller


BILL STOLLER spent the first few weeks of his life  on this property and was raised on the family farm outside of Dayton, Oregon. He received a degree in business and economics from Pacific University, as well as an MBA from Portland State University. True to his Oregon upbringing, Bill sees himself as a custodian of the land he loves, and cares deeply about sustainability and environmental protection. Driven by these values, he sought to create a business that would last for the next two centuries and beyond.


When Bill acquired the family property from his cousin in 1993, many considered it to be marginal farmland at best. But Bill recognized that the rocky, well-drained Jory soil, the elevation between 300 and 650 feet, and the land’s south facing slope were all ideal for growing wine grapes.

Bill, already a veteran of the wine world thanks to his co-ownership of Chehalem Winery, planted his first 10 acres each of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in 1995. He leveraged the experience of consulting viticulturists, but also adapted many newer vineyard techniques in order to maximize the fruit quality. Many wineries such as Boedecker Cellars are lucky to buy some grapes from this amazing sustainable farmed vineyard. Melissa Burr has been the winemaker since 2003 and has done a great job. In 2005 Melissa became Director of Winemaking as the team is growing and production is growing. 

Meet Melissa Burr

2015 Oregon Was HOT HOT HOT!

It was a very early Bud Break with spring and the beginning of summer being on the Dry, Sunny and HOT Side. Lots of clusters of really ripe grapes. They were preparing to bring in fruit much sooner than later but thank goodness for a Cool Spell in August which slowed things down . The cooler temps and some rain was able to give the grapes a longer hang time on the vines and most importantly tame the BRIX (Sugar Level) in the grapes. Consequently they were able to harvest the grapes as the flavors presented themselves and their 2015 wines were very dense and concentrated with bright flavors and acidity . Thank goodness for Mother Nature.

2015 Stoller Reserve Pinot Noir

Dundee Hills, Oregon Review

A  little switch this time. Usually, I pick the wines I want to review. This time several guests have been repeatedly telling ME how amazing this Oregon Pinot was so I actually got my recommendations from the guests instead of vice versa!

Stoller Front

Stoller rear

All their fruit in all their wines are Estate Grown and Bottled. This reserve is from the oldest parts of the vineyard using several different Burgundian Clones including my faves the Dijon 777 and 115. All the clones are fermented in separate barrels and then blended to give the complexity and a solid cross section of what this Stoller Vineyard is all about. The wine is reporting 14.1% ABV and was aged in French Oak only 30% New and 70% Neutral.

Stoller Glass

Out of the closet comes my Oregon Pinot Noir Glasses for this one. The wine is darker and deeper in the center than other Oregon Pinots but that is typical for the Dundee Hills and this vineyard. Deeply colored Ruby/Purple and star bright. On the nose it was like being back in New York during spring when my grandmother would check on her Roses in the garden. Strong floral bouquet of Rose Petals mixed with potting soil from the garden she was working with. Deep intense Maraschino Cherry, Twizzlers, and spice. On the palate very intense bursts of every Red and Purplish Fruit you can imagine. Raspberry, Black Raspberry, Black Cherry, Red Plums, Red Currants, and I mean Intense leading to a soft tannin, candied orange peels and a shot of Fireball Whiskey on the finish.  Don’t get me wrong as it is a polished wine and I totally loved it and the Red Fruit Intensity shows the character of the Stoller Vineyard and of the Hot 2015 Vintage. With that said, Wine Spectator  awarded this wine 92 Points and Wine Enthusiast 91. For me, I like my Oregon Pinots with more brambles and earth and maybe backed off a little on the spice. For those personal reasons alone I will agree with Wine Spectator and go 91 points out of 100.

The Summary

My guests were spot on who recommended I try this wine. I certainly think it is worth the $45.99 as wines like this quality and handcrafted touch usually can be $55.00 and Over. It’s would pair so well with grilled salmon, bbq ribs, and seared duck breast as well as some heavier dishes due to the intensity of the fruit and acidity. Great Job Melissa and team as this is a showcase wine. Quality to price ratio…… I keep staring at those Boedecker Cellars Stewart Pinot Noirs at $28.99 hmmm but their single vineyard Stoller from 2014 was around this price too. So just like August in Oregon some times when you want a great Pinot from Oregon…Make it Rain!!!

Grape-fully yours, Larry

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