Site to House Future Winery and Vineyard for this Burgundy-Oregon Project
Portland, Ore. (May 6, 2019) — Nicolas-Jay, a Willamette Valley partnership between Jean-Nicolas Méo of Burgundy’s Méo-Camuzet and visionary music entrepreneur Jay Boberg, announces the purchase of a special site in the Dundee Hills, a new home for the Burgundy-tied project. The new site will house a gravity-flow passive winery and future plantings of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay planted in deep Jory soils on a rare, north face of the Dundee Hills.
Building on the reputation of Nicolas-Jay’s existing estate vineyard Bishop Creek, a vineyard purchased by Méo and Boberg in 2014, the new vineyard plantings will complement Nicolas-Jay’s flagship cuvée, the Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. Like Bishop Creek, the new vineyard in the Dundee Hills will also continue the Burgundian tradition of dense plantings.
Lying in a quiet corner at the top of the Dundee Hills, the new site exceeded Méo and Boberg’s checklist of desirable qualities with its optimal topography, aspect and soil composition. The north-facing site, a rarity in the Willamette Valley, will provide cooler temperatures for later ripening Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. On a slope stretching from 450 feet to the top of the Dundee Hills, the acreage identified for future plantings boasts some of the deepest Jory soils surveyed in the AVA.
“We believe we’ll be able to grow vines on this site that will rival some of the best in the region,” said Jean-Nicolas Méo. Veteran vineyard manager Leigh Bartholomew commended Nicolas-Jay on the purchase, calling the Dudley Road property “possibly the best vineyard site in the Willamette Valley.”
With construction of the winery beginning this summer, the team at Nicolas-Jay expects to make their first vintage at the new winery in 2020. An existing barn on the property will house the new facility, which will have an emphasis on sustainability. The gravity flow winery will be one of the first passive wineries ever constructed in the United States.
“Jean-Nicolas inherited the centuries-old winery layout at Méo-Camuzet and there are certain spatial constraints in Vosne-Romanée,” explains Jay Boberg. “With this new undertaking, he can design the winery he always wanted to build. That’s very exciting for all of us.”
Bordered by dense forest land on three sides, Nicolas-Jay’s new home on Dudley Road will also welcome guests in a new tasting room, with tastings available by appointment only. An existing outdoor kitchen with a wood-fired grill will accommodate guests in the summer months.
“There is a sense of isolated beauty here,” says Nicolas-Jay Associate Winemaker, Tracy Kendall. “I find magic in this place that is singularly Oregonian.”