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Harvest 2018 Kicks Off at the Carlton Winemakers Studio with New Vintners and Familiar Faces

Harry Peterson-Nedry, Dave Paige and Jerry Murray crafting wines this vintage

Carlton, OR (September 24, 2018) — As The Carlton Winemakers Studio in Carlton, Oregon enters its 16th harvest season, the cellar is awash with pressing and crushing activity as new winemaking projects fill the space. The winery has been a home to an array of pioneering winemakers and new talent over the years – including such iconic names as Robert Brittan, Lynne Penner-Ash and Tony Soter.  This year “The Studio” welcomes Oregon wine legend Harry Peterson-Nedry and his daughter Wynne; Dave Paige, formerly with Adelsheim Vineyard; and veterans Jerry and Meg Murray to the collaborative shared space.

Harry Peterson-Nedry began his wine career on Ribbon Ridge 26 years before it was recognized as an American Viticultural Area (AVA) in 2006. RR wines is the best single vineyard Pinot noir and Riesling sourced from his family’s 120-acre Ridgecrest Vineyards estate, which contains the oldest plantings on Ribbon Ridge ranging up to 38 years-old. Head winemaker at Chehalem until earlier this year, Harry’s daughter Wynne Peterson-Nedry makes the wines.  Bringing intimate knowledge of the site, a youthful perspective and cutting-edge techniques to the wines, Harry calls her “laser-focused, flexible and adaptive in an era of climate change – exultant, experimental, but not extreme.”

Wynne Peterson-Nedry

Wynne Peterson-Nedry, Owner and Winemaker for RR Wines, at work in the cellar at The Carlton Winemakers Studio.

David Paige, formerly winemaker for Adelsheim Vineyard, is crafting the first vintage of his newly launched Paige Wines at the studio. The initial release of Paige Wines will feature approximately 700 cases of Pinot noir and 150 cases of Chardonnay with plans to grow.  Fruit for the wines is sourced from several vineyards and appellations Paige is intimate with from his 17 years at Adelsheim, with a particular focus on the Chehalem Mountains.  “I have always tried to make wines that win you over slowly with their complexity and precision,” says Paige. “The Willamette Valley is one of the few places where Pinot noir reaches its peak of fascination and elegance. I am still trying to learn how to show its full potential.”

Also crafting wine at the studio for the first time is Jerry Murray, who created a name for himself at Patton Valley Vineyards and most recently at Domaine Anderson in Anderson Valley working alongside Burgundian consultant Jeremy Seysses of Domaine Dujac.Murray and his wife Meg founded PROJECT M Wines in 2016.  Murray says the mission of PROJECT M is to enhance its customer’s quality of life using wine as a context for experiencing beauty.  They are also committed to being a responsible consumer choice through their triple bottom line business philosophy valuing people and planet as much as profit.  Pursuing the virtues of precision and purity, PROJECT M will create elegant Pinot noir, Chardonnay, Rosé and Riesling from several distinctive sites in the Willamette Valley.

Andrew Rich

Winemaker Andrew Rich of Andrew Rich Wines

Harvest 2018 officially kicked off at the studio on September 5th, when long time studio resident Andrew Rich Wines crushed 6 tons of Syrah from Red Willow and Ciel du Cheval Vineyards in Washington state. RR wines followed with four tons of Ribbon Ridge Pinot noir for its first rosé on September 10th.  The first white grapes, Elton Wines Chardonnay made by consulting winemaker Isabelle Meunier, arrived at the studio on September 14th as well as Pinot noir from Ribbon Ridge that will help create the RR Wines rosé.  In total, 11 winemakers representing 16 producers are crafting wines at The Carlton Winemakers Studio for vintage 2018.

According to Anthony King, General Manager for The Carlton Winemakers Studio and Winemaker for studio clients Ratio WinesQuintet Wines and Asilda Wines, the 2018 growing season included another moderate to warm summer in Oregon’s Willamette Valley.  Low precipitation in May and June created drier soils that worried some vineyard owners without irrigation, but light rain around the 12th of September provided the vines with a much needed drink.  “The rain was just what we needed to slow the accumulation of sugar and give the skins, seeds, and flavors time to catch up,” he said. “ Grapes around the valley are still looking clean and showing great signs of maturity.”

About The Carlton Winemakers Studio

Founded in 2002 by winemakers Eric Hamacher and Luisa Ponzi and Ned and Kristen Lumpkin, The Carlton Winemakers Studio is an elite Oregon winemaking facility with history as a home and launch pad for some of the most groundbreaking wines from the Pacific Northwest.  The Northwest’s first alternating proprietorship and first winery built to LEED standards, the studio provides top of the line winemaking equipment and a full-time staff that allows artisan winemakers to focus solely on their craft. 

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