www.bellepente.com

Belle Pente (bell-pont’) means “beautiful slope” — a perfect description for our hillside vineyard site in the Yamhill-Carlton District of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Our inspiration comes from the exquisite wines of Burgundy and Alsace, and follows the guiding principle that great wine is made in the vineyard and merely nurtured in the winery. Our standard practices include organic and biodynamic viticulture, carefully managing vineyard quality and yields, and meticulously hand sorting the grapes that arrive at the winery to remove all under ripe or damaged fruit. Our three-level, gravity-flow winery is designed for gentle, natural winemaking in small lots, with minimal handling and manipulation, to produce premium wines of character and distinction.

Belle Pente is owned and operated by Jill and Brian O’Donnell. The 70-acre property is located on a historic farm two miles east of the town of Carlton in the new Yamhill-Carlton District viticultural area. The vineyard site rises from 240′ to 500′ with south, southeast and southwest exposures. The first vineyard was planted in 1994 and now includes 16 acres of Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay. Our estate vineyard is supplemented with high quality fruit grown to our specifications in partnership with carefully selected independent Yamhill County vineyards.

Chardonnay 2010

With the cool growing season, the alcohol came in at 13%, and even with a complete malolactic fermentation, the wine is bright, fresh, and lively. The wines are 100% barrel fermented, but with very modest use of new oak. This allows the toasty oak characteristics to play a supporting role vs stealing the limelight, to provide an accent vs being the main attraction. At almost 5 years from vintage, this wine is beginning to hit it’s prime. Enjoy now and over the next six years with rich white fish dishes, baked mac and cheese, fresh pesto, and dozens of other white and green foods!

 

Harvest: 100% Estate Vineyard – Yamhill-Carlton District, Willakenzie soil, 9-14 year old vines, Dijon 76, 95, 96 and Espiguette 352 clones Harvested October 6th & 13th
Crush, press, and settle 24-48 hours (no SO2) Fermentation & Aging: 100% Barrel Fermented in both Oregon and French oak 21% – new oak
7% – 1 fill
7% – 3 fill 65% – neutral
CY3079 and VL-1 yeast extended sur lie aging (12 months) Full malolactic fermentation Bottling: Bottled 8/21/08, unfined, sterile filtered 13.01% Alcohol 5.0 g/l TA
0.2 g/l RS
3.67 pH

REVIEWS:
Belle Pente Chardonnay Belle Pente Vineyard 2009 WA October 2013

Pinot Gris 2012

Hybrid vinification, coupled with the long sur lie aging, creates a wine that has both richness and freshness.  This 2012 version is redolent of baked apples and pears with spicy notes, rich and full bodied, with a touch of residual sugar balanced by crisp acidity.  It is easy to enjoy on it’s own, and there is not a dish on the planet that it won’t compliment splendidly!

Harvest:
35% Walker Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton District, Willakenzie soil, 23.0 Brix, pH 3.27
25% Rivenwood Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton District, Willakenzie soil, 23.7 Brix, pH 3.47
40% Belle Pente Estate Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton District, Willakenzie soil, 23.1 Brix, pH 3.42
Harvested between 28-Sep and 22-Oct Crush, press, and settle 48 hours (no SO2)

Fermentation & Aging:
38% Fermented in 1200 liter German oak casks (40 years old) 12% Fermented in neutral 225 liter oak barrels
50% Stainless Steel Tank Fermentation
Long, cool fermentation (45-55F) using VL1 yeast extended sur lie aging (11 months).

Bottling:
Bottled September 16th, 2010, unfined, sterile filtered
13.7% Alcohol
5.1 g/l TA 6.9 g/l RS
3.56 pH

Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2013

The blend of volcanic and sedimentary soils creates a wine that leads with bright red fruit aromatics backed with darker, riper fruit on the palate. The moderate use of new oak and low alcohol provides a fresh, focused, elegant Pinot intended for early enjoyment. Our 2013 Willamette Valley blend consists of almost 2/3 estate grown fruit from all 8 of our Pinot Noir blocks, supplemented with fruit sourced from Bella Vida and Murto vineyard.

Harvest:
63% Belle Pente Estate Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton, marine sedimentary soil, planted 1998 & 1999 – Pommard, Wadenswil and Dijon 113, 114, 115 and 777 clones
24% Belle Vida Vineyard, Dundee Hills, volcanic soils, planted 2000 – Dijon 114, 667, and 777 clones
13% Murto Vineyard, Dundee Hills, volcanic soils, planted 1986 – Pommard clone

Hand harvested September 14th through October 4th, average 21.8deg. Brix and 3.32 pH 100% destemmed, 5-8 day cold soak (42-48F)

Fermentation & Aging:
Fermented with ambient and selected (BRG) yeast strains
1.25 & 2.5 ton fermenters, punched down by hand twice per day Average total cuvaison 17 days
Free run & light press wine (directly to barrel)
10% New French Oak (Remond, Sirugue & Francois Freres)
20% 1-2 year old

70% 3-5 year old
11 months barrel aging with one racking (barrel to tank for bottling)

Bottling:
Gravity bottled January, 2015 (unfined and unfiltered)
12.6% Alcohol
6.3 g/L TA
3.48 pH

REVIEWS:
Belle Pente Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2013, VINOUS July 2014

Pinot Noir Yamhill-Carlton 2013

This cuvee, from 100% estate fruit, is making it’s first appearance since the 2010 vintage. Due to the nature of the 2013 vintage, and with an eye toward the very high production in 2014, we decided to revive this bottling and make it part of our regular repertoire. This year’s version is a blend of 11 barrels “de-classified” from our flagship Belle Pente vineyard wine, combining some lighter lots for freshness with some more tannic press lots for structure. The result is a soft, supple, approachable wine with dark fruit characteristics balanced by lively acidity. It is an absolute pleasure to drink today and will only get better with a few years in the cellar.

Harvest:
100% Belle Pente Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley, Oregon
Marine sedimentary (Willakenzie & Peavine) soil over Spencer formation sandstone Pommard (40%), Dijon 113 (20%), 115 (15%), 114 (15%), & Wadensvil (10%) selections South facing blocks planted in 1998 & 1999
1800-2400 vines per acre, 300-500 ft. elevation, organic/biodynamic farming, no irrigation

Hand harvested September 14th – 19th , average 22.5 Brix and 3.5 pH, yield 2.4 tons/acre 100% de-stemmed, 5-7 day cold maceration (40-48F)

Fermentation & Aging:
Fermented with ambient and selected (BRG) yeasts Maximum temperature reached during fermentation 92F 1.25 ton fermenters, punch down by hand twice per day. Average total cuvaison 16 days
Free run & press wine (directly to barrel)
25% New French Oak (Remond, Sirugue, Francois Freres) 35% 1-2 year old
40% 3-6 year old
18 months barrel aging with one racking prior to assemblage

Bottling:
Gravity bottled May 7th, 2015 (unfined and unfiltered)
12.8% Alcohol
6.2 g/L TA
3.56 pH

Pinot Noir Belle Pente Estate Vineyard 2012

This 2012 version of our “flagship” estate bottled Pinot noir offering is textbook Yamhill-Carlton. Fruit flavors and aromas lean toward the dark end of the spectrum, with ripe blackberry and wild black cherry notes, complimented by complex overtones of coffee, fresh herbs, and flowers. The tannins are smooth, silky, and sappy with a seductive savoriness leading into a long, lingering finish. This is a contemplative wine that unwinds in the glass and reveals it’s charms slowly. It is a pleasure to drink today and will only get better with a few years in the cellar.

Harvest:
100% Belle Pente Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley, Oregon
Marine sedimentary (Willakenzie & Peavine) soil over Spencer formation sandstone
Pommard, Wadenswil and Dijon 113, 114, 115 & 777 selections (grafted) planted 1998 to 1999 1800-2400 vines per acre, 300-500 ft. elevation, organic/biodynamic farming, no irrigation

Hand harvested October 1st – 10th , average 24 Brix and 3.45 pH, yield 2.2 tons/acre 100% de-stemmed, 7-9 day cold maceration (40-48F)

Fermentation & Aging:
Fermented with indigenous (pied de cuvee), ambient, and cultured (BRG) yeasts Maximum temperature reached during fermentation 92F
1.25 ton fermenters, punch down by hand twice per day. 
Average total cuvaison 21 days
Free run & light press wine only (directly to barrel)
33% New French Oak (Remond, Sirugue, Francois Freres) 40% 1-2 year old
27% 3-5 year old
18 months barrel aging with one racking prior to assemblage

Bottling:
Gravity bottled June 5th 2014 (unfined and unfiltered)
13.8% Alcohol
5.8 g/L TA
3.64 pH

REVIEWS:
Belle Pente Pinot Noir Estate Vineyard 2012, VINOUS July 2015

Pinot Noir Murto Vineyard 2012

The combination of the very low yields and the terrific growing season has created something very special: ripe flavors and aromas backed up by fresh acidity and silky tannins. In classic Dundee Hills fashion, this wine displays ripe red fruit flavors and aromas reminiscent of cherry compote and raspberry eau d’vie, overlaid with the signature Murto baking spice, Asian spice, and pepper (white, black, and Sichuan!) aromatics. The palate is dense and concentrated, but also vibrant and fresh. It screams for traditional Pinot parings like roast duck or stuffed quail. Enjoy this delightful young Pinot today and over the next 20-30 years!

Harvest:
100% Murto Vineyard, Dundee Hills, Jory soil (volcanic, Columbia River Basalt), 750 ft. elevation 100% Pommard clone, self-rooted, planted 1978
806 vines per acre, dry farmed

Hand harvested October 5th – 11th, 24 Brix, 3.35 pH, yield 1.2 tons/acre 100% destemmed, 7-8 day cold maceration (44-48 F)

Fermentation & Aging:
Fermented with indigenous and cultured (BRG) yeasts. Maximum temperature reached during fermentation 90F 1.25 ton fermenters, punch down by hand twice per day. Average total cuvaison 19 days
Free run & light press wine only (directly to barrel)
45% New French Oak (Remond, Sirugue, Francois Freres) 25% 1-2 year old ,
30% 3-5 year old
18 months barrel aging with one racking prior to assemblage

Bottling:
Gravity bottled 17-April 2014 (unfined and unfiltered)
13.9% Alcohol
6.4 g/L TA
3.46 pH

REVIEWS:
Belle Pente Pinot Noir Murto Vineyard 2012, VINOUS July 2015

Pinot Noir Estate Reserve 2011

Since it’s first release in 1997, our Estate Reserve Pinot has represented the “best of the best” from our vineyard, showcasing the purest, most attractive attributes that can be coaxed from our “beautiful slope” each year. It is the epitome of our winegrowing efforts, and it’s release – 2 1/2 years after harvest – marks the “official” end of that vintage. However, it is really just the beginning, since the lifespan of this wine (under ideal storage conditions) should be measured in decades rather than years. This 2011 version is a tightly wound, structured young wine, a bit restrained and reticent, but responds well to decanting and shows best after being open for a few days.

Harvest:
100% Belle Pente Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley, Oregon
Marine sedimentary (Willakenzie) soil over Spencer formation sandstone
55% Wadenswil planted 1998, 33% Dijon 115 & 777 planted 1994, 12% Pommard planted 1998 1100-1800 vines per acre, farmed organically (with biodynamic techniques) and without irrigation
240-500 ft. elevation


Hand harvested October 27-28th , average 22 Brix, 3.4 pH, yield 2.6 tons per acre
 100% de-stemmed, 6-8 day cold maceration (38-44F)

Fermentation & Aging:
Fermented with ambient yeasts
. Maximum temperature reached during fermentation 94F
 Free run wine only (directly to barrel)
45% New French Oak (Remond, Sirugue, Francois Freres) 45% 1-2 year old
 10% 3-5 year old
18 month elevage with one racking prior to assemblage

Bottling:
Gravity bottled May 30th, 2013 (unfined and unfiltered)
12.9% Alcohol
5.7 g/L TA
3.76 pH

REVIEWS:
Belle Pente Pinot Noir Estate Reserve 2011, VINOUS July 2014

Riesling 2010

This 2010 version, with it’s modest 11.8 alcohol level, might send you to one of the more southern German regions like the Rheinhessen or Nahe.  Since roughly 25% of the clusters were showing signs of botrytis, we sorted those out from the unaffected fruit and processed them separately. The botrytis contributes elevated spiced apple and pear aromas, along with wet stones in a spring-fed creek.  The palate is rich, ripe, and focused with great freshness and a crisp, clean finish. Enjoy this captivating Oregon Riesling now and over the next decade as an aperitif or with shellfish, raw or in cream sauces!

Harvest: 55% Stein, Yamhill Vineyard – Yamhill-Carlton District – 22 year old vines, picked 29-Oct. 45% Chehalem Mountain Vineyard – 38 year old vines, picked 29-Oct. Crush, 2-day cold maceration (Yamhill “Select Cluster” only) press, and settle for 48 hours (no SO2). Fermentation & Aging: 100% tank fermentation (40-60F) using VL3 yeast extended sur lie aging (7-8 months) in tank. Bottling: Bottled 8/10/07, unfined, sterile filtered 13.63% Alcohol 6.0 g/l TA 10.8 g/l RS 3.33 pH

Oregon