Fossil Fawn Pinot Gris Rouge 2020


"About 40% of the grapes for this wine come from Silvershot Vineyards, which is kind of our "estate," if you will. The one acre of Pinot Gris is planted in the Pole Block, on the steepest and highest slope of the site. The combined effects of the southwestern slope and the fractured sandstone soil on the own-rooted and dry-farmed vines results in tiny clusters of deeply pigmented Pinot gris that are nearly indistinguishable from the neighboring Pinot noir. The block naturally produces about 1.5 tons per acre without any fruit thinning.

This year we again incorporated Pinot gris from BeckenRidge Vineyard, a nearly 40-year-old farm to the west of Dallas, Oregon, as you ascend into the Coast Range foothills. BeckenRidge has similar marine sediment soil series as Silvershot, with some younger volcanic overlay in spots. Being a slightly higher elevation site than Silvershot, the BeckenRidge fruit provided brightness and spice to the final blend.

We treat the Pinot gris as we would any red grape, with full skin-contact fermentation. A little more than half of the lot was destemmed into an open-top fermenter, and the other portion placed into a bin that was sealed for carbonic fermentation. While the carbonic portion fermented away on its own, the destemmed portion was given a daily foot treading. After two weeks, we added back the still-whole bunches of carbonic fruit to the destemmed lot to lengthen fermentation time and draw out more flavor. After pressing, the wine finished out primary fermentation in barrel for the next two months, then through spontaneous secondary low-and-slow into late spring. We bottled by hand in July without any fining or filtration.

Reminiscent of Hawaiian Punch on the nose, leading to heaps of bright red fruits and orange peel on the palate, with cinnamon, leather, and dusty earth. Don't let the juicy fruit deceive though, the wine is quite structured, with plenty of fine-grained tannins from the extended skin-contact."-- Fossil and Fawn