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Leah Jørgensen Cellars 2018 "Le Coeur Tour Rain" Gamay Noir

Welcome to Loiregon!

Some winemakers are dabblers, experimenting with lots of grape varietals, tinkering with taste profiles. That’s not Leah Jorgensen.

Leah knows exactly what she wants to make, and her passion shines through. It’s Cabernet Franc. Specifically, Cab Franc produced like that found in France’s Loire Valley.

It all started in Washington DC, a town known for its wine consumption, not wine production. But Leah represented an importer of extraordinary suite of Loire Valley wines and shopped them to embassies, fancy restaurants, and high-end retail shops.

Before long, she wanted to try her hand at putting the wine in the bottles, not just selling it. So, she headed west, to her Dad’s home state of Oregon. There was just one problem – there’s not a lot of Cabernet Franc grown in Oregon.

So, Leah works closely with a handful of vineyards in the Willamette, Rogue, and Applegate Valleys that meet her exacting standards for sustainability and collaboration. If you fall in love with Leah’s Loire-style Oregon wines, you’ll be excused if you start musing aloud about a magical place called Loiregon…

Cellar 503 Tasting Notes

Leah Jørgensen Cellars, Portland, Oregon
2018 "Le Coeur Tour Rain" Gamay Noir

We love Gamay Noir for Thanksgiving. In fact, we’ve featured a Gamay four out of the last five years! But you’re to be forgiven if you’re still new to the Gamay revolution. After all, there’s precious little grown outside France, almost exclusively in Beaujolais.

What is grown in North America is almost entirely in Oregon, and yet even here there’s so little that the Oregon Wine Board’s annual statistical report just includes it in “other”.

Like Pinot Noir, it’s a light-bodied red with modest tannins. But its rounded fruit and brighter acid profile makes it a perfect complement to the rich flavors of the holiday. Your wine snob cousin will be impressed, while Aunt Mabel will happily enjoy it with her turkey.

This Gamay Noir from Leah Jorgensen is lovely, elegant, and light with lots of acid and low alcohol. It is a beautiful magenta color in the glass and is loaded with bright, ripe cherries, cassis, and cranberries, with distinctive black pepper notes. It’s tart, elegant, juicy, and ethereal coming from a lovely vintage.

A Cellar 503 selection in November 2020, Thanksgiving Wines Willamette Valley | Gamay Noir