Vintages DO matter and 2014 in Oregon was terrific!

A question we hear often:

“Do I have to worry about the vintage when I’m buying under-$30 wine?”

To which we always respond:

“Yes, especially with under-$30 wine.”

The vintage, i.e., the year in which the grapes were harvested and converted to wine, can make a considerable difference in the quality and character of what goes in your glass.

This is especially true with made-in-Oregon wines.

Unlike grape-growing areas like Napa/Sonoma where they pretty much know what they’re going to get, year in and year out, the Willamette Valley is a crap shoot.

If you live in Oregon, you know the weather can be, shall we say, unpredictable.

Grapes don’t like “unpredictable” any more than we do.  Probably less.

But 2014 turned out to be an anomaly. The weather was extremely predictable…and unseasonably warm…especially during the summer. This led to an unusual but fortuitous result: a grape harvest of high quantity AND high quality.

Hooray for us!

Many of the Oregon 2014’s, especially the Willamette Valley pinots, are punching far above their weight.

In other vintages, it can be quite the challenge to find under-$30 pinots worthy of recommendation.

With the 2014 pinots, it’s a heckuva lot easier.

We’ve already singled out 2014 Four Graces Willamette Valley in a previous PTWG post.

We’ll continue to shine a light on the 2014’s during May, Oregon wine month.

Yes, vintages DO matter.  2014 was a great one.  In many (not all but many) Oregon wines, we think you’ll taste the difference.

So next time you’re shopping for Oregon pinot noir, look for the ’14’s.

You’ll have a better chance of getting a better bottle.

BTW, they’re saying the 2015 Oregon vintage might turn out to be just as good…if not better…than 2014!

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.