I’ve been tasting the wines of Oregon’s Troon Vineyard for a few years now, and their new releases continue this winery’s tradition of excellence.
All Troon wines come from estate grapes in the cool Applegate Valley appellation of Southern Oregon. The winery sits at 1,400 feet above sea level, on a high bench above the Applegate River. Surrounded by the Siskiyou Mountains, the Applegate and Rogue Rivers allow cooling Pacific breezes to flow into the valley in the afternoons, which helps keep the diurnal temperature shifts high.
The Troon team has been transitioning to biodynamics, and the 2018 grapes were farmed organically and biodynamically. They expect their first Demeter certification with the next vintage. The wines are generally picked with brix measurements between 21 and 24, and the acidity really shines through in all of these wines. In the winery, all the wine are crushed by foot, fermentation is done with native yeasts, there’s no correcting for acids or sugars, and the wines don’t see any new oak.
Their range of releases is wide, from Skin-fermented Riesling, to Rhone whites, to Cabernet, Zinfandel, Syrah and Vermentino. In this new batch of Troon wines, I found, yet again, excellent wines at exceptional prices.
2017 Troon Vineyard Roussanne- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Medium yellow color. Apricot and white peach aromas, with lots of floral perfume, baby’s breath and lilies. Light-bodied, only 11% alcohol, which is kind of crazy for a Roussanne but this totally works. Texture is rich and waxy and dusty but acidity is there and keeps it fresh. Apricot and lime peel mix with yellow flowers, raw almond, and some flinty, stony notes. Complex, texturally fascinating, a very unique Roussanne. Barrel fermented, aged for 6 months in mature oak. (90 points)
2017 Troon Vineyard Kubli Bench Blanc- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Rich yellow color. Wow, aromatics pop with apricot, pineapple, orange marmalade, and complex elements of lamp oil, raw almond and herbal extract kind of thing – unique and interesting. 11.8% alcohol but texturally deep, creamy, chalky, with moderating acidity. The flavors are delicious (apricot and orange marmalade, mango, notes of salted almond and sweet white flowers), but the mouthfeel is just so lovely, and the most fascinating aspect of the wine. Really cool stuff. 52% marsanne 48% viognier barrel co-fermented, aged for 6 months in mature oak. (91 points)
2017 Troon Vineyard Vermentino- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Light yellow color. Pretty aromatics of salted lemon and lime, orange peel, along with floral, spice, herbal complexity. Lovely texture and balance with fresh, crisp acidity and a smooth and vibrant mouthfeel. Apricot, lemon, pineapple and orange, along with sea salt, crushed shells, honeyed white tea. A brighter, leaner version of the Whole Grape Ferment, but still plenty of depth and texture here. Insane value for the price. Barrel fermented, aged six months in mature oak, 12% alcohol. (91 points)
2017 Troon Vineyard Vermentino Whole Grape Ferment- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Medium yellow color. Fascinating aromas of apricot, orange and lemon pith, sea salt, white tea, hay, freshly cut flowers. On the palate, this is pristine and crisp, but crunchy and full of textural depth as well, with lovely balance. Apricot, lemon pith, along with complex elements of saline, crushed shells, white tea, bamboo and white pepper, seriously cool stuff going on here. Texture and mouthfeel on this wine is glorious. Barrel fermented and aged six months in mature oak, 12.6% alcohol. (92 points)
2016 Troon Vineyard Malbec Cuvée Cot- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Light purple color. Aromas of warm plum and blackberry compote, tart wild blueberries, and a cool mix of lavender, violets, black tea and warm clay. So vibrant and tangy on the palate, but structured tannins provide some grip. The black cherry, plums and blueberry fruit is tart and tangy, and laced with a complex mix of incense sticks, lavender, violets, loamy soil, black tea and tar. This is delicious now, but has the acidity, structure and fruit to age quite a while. 18 months in mature oak, 13.4% alcohol. (91 points)
2017 Troon Vineyard Zinfandel Kubli Bench- Oregon, Southern Oregon, Applegate Valley
Vibrant purple color. The aromas really pop with aromas of red cherries, strawberries, pomegranate, with notes of roses, pepper, lavender, some cola, I love this fresh, bright appeal. Suave and medium/full-bodied with crisp acidity and fleshy, velvety tannins. Crisp red and black cherries, pomegranate, strawberries, lots of fruit but an airy, more restrained feel. Complex elements of spicy tobacco, pepper, leather and a whole lot of red flowers. So pretty, so delicious. Zinfandel co-fermented with 3% Petite Sirah, aged 12 months in mature oak, 13.6% alcohol. Applegate Valley Zin, who knew? Not me, but this is eye-opening stuff. (91 points)