Morgen Long - Organic
Pick two of the three offered:
Willamette Valley Chardonnay
Pink Label chardonnay
There are couple handfuls of wineries who are driving the Willamette Valley Chardonnay discussion -- and who are making the most compelling and fantastic Chards. The discussion isn't complete without the inclusion of Seth Morgen Long, whose singular path is to focus exclusively on Chardonnay. His Chards are, from top to bottom, the most diverse and dynamic range of Willamette Valley Chardonnay available.
Morgen Long's gorgeous, tiny production Chardonnays each have their own unique voice, which makes them even more impressive. The individuality in each wine shows the gentle strength of Seth's winemaking style.
Seth Morgen Long is a young Oregon winemaker who focuses on site-driven Willamette Valley Chardonnay under the label, Morgen Long. After gaining a certification as Sommelier in 2009 and 2010, he created various opportunities to travel the world to discover the craft of winemaking from the inside out.
Before starting Morgen Long in 2014, he worked with winemakers in the Willamette Valley, Oregon (2009, 2010, 2011), Central Otago, New Zealand (2011), Santa Cruz Mountains, California (2011) and in Meursault, Burgundy, France (2012, 2013).
He is obsessive about Chardonnay and values deep ecology, approaching winemaking with the view that thoughtful, ethical decisions in the vineyard and attention to details in the winery allow for wine to be both delicious as well as authentic and transparent. Bringing this level of integrity to the art and business of winemaking,
Seth uses traditional methods of production learned around the world to make Oregon Chardonnay that is superlative and as age-worthy as it is enjoyable on release. Morgen Long Chardonnay is produced at Lingua Franca, a winery in the Eola-Amity Hills. Every effort is made to work with farmers who value ecology, sustainability, and at best, live on and love the land they farm. Seth’s vision of Oregon Chardonnay honors history, grape, time, and place, from vine to bottle.
Seth's specialization on Willamette Valley White Burgundy has turned heads. Wine critics and the wine press have taken notice of what focus and attention to detail deliver in a bottle of Morgen Long Chardonnay. Remember the "ABC" code some wine snobs coined years ago to define their desire to drink "anything but Chardonnay"? They haven't tried Morgen Long.
Fruit is handpicked according to the vintage and is pressed uniquely, taking into consideration the site’s pedigree, yield, and vintage character. After pressing, the juice is carefully moved into barrel or stainless steel with an appropriate amount of solids for fermentation.
Fermentation is with indigenous, ambient yeasts when possible and takes place in new and neutral 114L, 228L, 350L, 500L French oak barrels; sometimes fermentations start in stainless steel tanks before being moved into oak. Lees are only stirred as needed, typically once or twice towards the end of primary fermentation, while CO2 is still present. Malolactic always occurs. Once primary and malolactic are complete, the wines age with minimal effective sulfur. After one year in barrel in a cold cellar, the wines and lees are transferred to stainless steel with inert gas to blend and integrate for a second winter. Fining may occur with bentonite. Filtration may occur prior to bottling, which is between 17-20 months.
Willamette Valley Chardonnay: Elegant flinty reduction, lemon curd, lime oil, almond paste, graham, ginger, crushed rocks and faint wood spice. Lively acidity and buoyant flavors are smoothed by silken texture and ample density, stretching out long on the finish.
100% Willamette Valley Chardonnay from six non-irrigated vineyards planted between 1968-2016. (40% Seven Springs Vineyard – 7-year-old Dijon 95 & 76 picked 9/26/19. 25% X Omni Vineyard – 3-6-year-old mixed clones (15+) picked 10/1 and 10/7/19. 19% Durant Vineyard – 21-year-old Dijon 95 & 76 picked 9/7/19. 8% Loubejac Vineyard – 12-year-old Dijon 96 picked 9/26/19. 7% Yamhill Vineyard – 35-year-old Wente/108 picked 10/1/19. 1% The Eyrie Vineyards – 51-year-old Draper selection picked 9/28/19. )
Pink Label Pale pink, aromas of blood orange, tangerine, pear, raspberry, and green tea, with bready, savory, musky flourishes. Flavors of white cranberry, salted grapefruit, saffron, and sour patch kids stretch out into delicate chalky structure with juicy acidity.
95% Willamette Valley Chardonnay from three non-irrigated vineyards planted in mixed volcanic basalt and marine sediment soils between 1999-2016; 5% Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot noir and Gamay lees (50% X Omni Vineyard – 3-6-year-old mixed clones (15+) picked 10/7/19. 35% Durant Vineyard – 21-year-old Dijon 95 & 76 picked 9/7/19. 10% Loubejac Vineyard – 12-year-old Dijon 96 picked 9/26/19. 5% Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot noir and Gamay lees).
Two barrels of X Omni, one barrel each of Durant and Loubejac diverged from the rest of their lots after ambient yeasts cruised through primary fermentation. Ambient malolactic moved slowly for six months, and even after I introduced malolactic bacteria. After twelve months aging on lees in once filled and neutral 228L French oak barrels, the wines were blended in stainless steel for a second winter on lees without sulfur. In the last week of 2020, I racked the wines off of Chardonnay lees and blended in 5% Pinot noir and Gamay lees from Seven Springs Vineyard. The wine was racked off of lees in late February 2021 and filtered after 18 months aging. Bottled in March.
Marine Chardonnay 100% Willamette Valley Chardonnay from two, non-irrigated vineyards planted in mixed marine sediment soils between 1984-2008: 60% Yamhill Vineyard – 34-year-old Wente/108 picked 10/1/19, 40% Loubejac Vineyard – 11-year-old Dijon 96 picked 9/26/19
Aromas of lime curd, Asian pear, chalk, beeswax, jasmine, green tea and graham. Ripe flavors and good weight is subtly moored below a shimmering minerality of bright acids and chalky texture.