Kelley Fox's "Barbie" Pinot Blanc, named for her mother, is a singular testament to Pinot Blanc in the Willamette Valley. Taste none other-- this is the only one worth drinking.
Utterly Burgundian, in the sense that it conveys something deep, visceral and pulsing about the land that raised it. Utterly Niigata-like, in the sense that it is a pure, subtle, and perfectly balanced reflection of time and place. Nothing ostentatious, nothing to hide.
Kelley does all her own farming according to biodynamic standards on leased rows and plots within the Willamette Valley. Her long tenure here has earned her access to the very best vines of the valley. This pinot blanc is fermented in stainless and raised in acacia. The acacia is ...nearly neutral, but perhaps there is a wild honey note somewhere in the distance. You tell me.
This is one of only 3 Oregon winemakers I collect, year to year, because the quality is always outstanding.
From the winery website, Kelley offers her notes here.
The Barbie 2021 is a pale, utterly transparent fresh lemon yellow. This Pinot blanc from Freedom Hill Vineyard was whole cluster pressed on the day of picking and then racked to a stainless-steel tank for primary fermentation, after which it was racked to two neutral Acacia puncheons for élevage and malolactic fermentation. 2021 was another stunning vintage for these vines and I’m happy to offer you this Pinot blanc named after my mom. The nose is incredibly inviting and in a very subtle way reminds me of some kind of paradise air. This beauty has high-octave energy, and I find it impossible to describe the flavours other than it is very enjoyable to drink with lovely acidity and length. The texture is beautiful. There is both a richness to it and soaring lightness and verticality. If this were a bird, it would remind me of a “Lark Ascending” (Vaughan Williams).
Appellation: Willamette Valley A.V.A.
Picking Date: 14 September 2021
Barrels: fermented in a stainless tank and racked to two neutral Acacia puncheons (500L) for élevage and malolactic fermentation
Bottling Date: 25 March 2022
Alcohol: 13.0 %
Cases Produced: 106