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Sidereus Vineyard & Winery

Sidereus Vineyard & Winery 2020 Pinot Noir

The accidental winemakers

Here at Cellar 503, we were big fans of A Blooming Hill, a vineyard and winery in the Laurelwood District’s Chehalem Mountains. But in 2021, Jim and Holly Witte decided to retire from their post-retirement winemaking life.

Meanwhile, Skip & Ruth Tarr were looking for a place with stunning mountain views upon which to build their dream home. They happened upon Blooming Hill and it was instant love. They’d tipsily mused on the idea of living on a vineyard, but it was never a real plan.

As the sale progressed, locals kept telling them about the extraordinary grapes that had been coming from the property for the last two decades. In their quest to learn more, they met with two dozen winemakers — eventually finding Jason Bull, longtime winemaker at David Hill Winery. And then, Zach Mance, a tasting room manager from Ardiri Vineyard.

With a team assembled and so much beautiful fruit, they overhauled the house and turned into a tasting room with expansive views of Mt. Hood. In Latin, sidereus refers to the divine stars in the heavens above — an apt name, indeed!

Sidereus Vineyard & Winery

Cellar 503 Tasting Notes

Sidereus Vineyard & Winery, Cornelius, Oregon
2020 Pinot Noir

Just when you think you’ve understood all the varietals there are to explore, some wine know-it-all starts talking about “clones”. What are clones and why should we care?

Let’s start with biology. Like people, most plants – including grape vines – reproduce by blending DNA of two parents. That’s great for humans, we need genetic diversity — but not for wine, since we’re hoping for genetic consistency. So, for centuries, growers have asexually cloned grapes by grafting cuttings from vine to vine. Over time, some wines have developed strong flavor profiles in particular clones. For Pinot Noir, there are now over 40 different, notable clones worldwide.

This Sidereus Pinot Noir is a blend of the Pommard, 777, 115, and 144 clones, fermented and aged separately for 12 months before blending. This extraordinary wine from Sidereus has many of the classic Laurelwood soil notes such as bramble & black cherry, white pepper, with touch of earth and smoke.

The Sidereus Vineyard & Winery is found in the north end of the Laurelwood District AVA.

A Cellar 503 selection in October 2022, Laurelwood AVA Laurelwood District | Pinot Noir