Le Cadeau Vineyard “Rocheux” Pinot Noir
WHY WE LOVE IT
- The Rocheux cuvee is sourced from the rockiest portion of the estate vineyard – the warmer Western slope, an area high in broken volcanic basalt content.
- These blocks are naturally warmer each season due to the Southwestern-facing exposure and late afternoon sunlight that heats the rocks below the vines.
- Cool nights, however, balance this heat resulting in ripeness and depth with good acid and an underlying mineral structure characteristic of Le Cadeau Vineyard. Very small production with under 200 cases produced.
- Winemaker Jim Sanders has meticulously refined his talent in Oregon winemaking since the mid-90s. Winemaker Jim Sanders portfolio features some of the Willamette Valley’s most acclaimed wines, including those produced under his partnership with Le Cadeau proprietor Tom Mortimer – Aubichon Cellars.
Varietal Composition: 100% Pinot Noir (Clones: Dijon 777, Pommard, and a splash of Wädenswil)
Elaboration: Traditional vinification in stainless steel tanks. After the fermentation, the wine ages for 11 months in French oak barrels.
Tasting Notes: “Precise and polished, with an elegantly complex beam of flavors accenting notes of boysenberry, green tea and orange zest that take on richness toward refined tannins. Drink now through 2026.” – Wine Spectator
2017 – 92 James Suckling | 93 Wine Spectator
2018 – 92 James Suckling
Tom Mortimer and his wife, Deb, began their search for the perfect vineyard site in 1996. Tom’s passion for wine collecting and his love of Oregon finally merged a year later with the purchase of the 28-acres of raw hillside property. Extensive clearing and land preparation followed before the first 6-acres of Pinot Noir were planted. In June of 2005– after 8-years of development—the 2002 vintage of estate grown Le Cadeau Pinot Noir was released.
Located in the Chehalem Mountains AVA of the Willamette Valley, Le Cadeau wines are made exclusively from estate-grown Pinot Noir. Clonal diversity results in aromatic nuance and rich flavor profiles, while the volcanic basalt soils add lingering minerality on the finish.
From the beginning, the Mortimers have been committed to meticulous farming, believing that great wine always traces its roots back to the vineyard. The high-elevation south-facing slope is sustainably farmed, LIVE certified, and incorporates many biodynamic practices.
Long-time winemakers Jim Sanders and Steve Ryan—with input from Burgundian consultant Pierre Millemann—produce signature Le Cadeau cuvées, each reflecting specific attributes of the estate vineyard.
Le Cadeau translates as “the gift” but the wine is not the gift; the wine is only the excuse. The gift is the beauty of the land in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, joy-filled relationships, and the freedom and opportunity to pursue this dream.