Maison L’Envoye The Attaché Pinot Noir 2016 | 93 Points from Burgundy Icon
Maison L’Envoye The Attaché Pinot Noir 2016 presents a medium ruby. Cherry, black tea, sous-bois, and rich raspberry aromas entice a sip, which brings those flavors richly to life, joined by vanilla, Asian spices, caramel, sweet herbs, and light smoke. Ripe tannins provide a plush texture, and acid brings balance and freshness. Drink now – 2028.
93 | Vinous: Limpid ruby-red. Explosive aromas of fresh red berries, cherry liqueur, incense, and candied lavender, along with a building suggestion of Asian spices. Vibrant, spice-laced raspberry and bitter cherry flavors become sweeter and deeper with aeration. In a fresh, nervy style for the vintage but in no way lacking for a depth of flavor. Maison L’Envoye The Attaché Pinot Noir 2016 closes sappy, gently sweet and very long, with silky, slow-building tannins adding shape and final grip. (made entirely with whole clusters and raised in French oak barrels, 30% of them new)
A Stunning Example of Willamette Pinot Noir
Maison L’Envoyé is the brainchild of Mark Tarlov, the founder of Evening Land Vineyards, who enlisted Louis-Michel Liger-Belair of Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair, to work with an assortment of the finest vineyards in the Willamette Valley. Liger-Belair is famed for owning La Romanée Monopole, from which he makes one of the greatest wines of Burgundy, with new releases starting at $4,000 per bottle. His has been described by Antonio Galloni as “one of Burgundy’s great vigneron families.”
It’s apparent that this is Oregon through a Burgundian lens, with the density and minerality of a good Côte de Beaune Premier Cru—just what you’d expect given the team behind the wine. With a bright ruby color and nose that’s complex and pure, aromas of Bing cherries, black tea, and forest floor waft out of the glass and entice a sip, where flavors of black raspberries, pie cherries, and Chinese five-spice carry through to a long, zesty finish with a hint of vanilla.
Winemaker Louis-Michel Liger-Belair
While employing many precise and specific winemaking techniques. Together producing a soulful and generous expression of the fruit flavors. But avoiding any heavy tannin, rough edges or alcoholic extraction. Picking fully physiologically ripe berries, often later than much of the valley, consulting winemaker Louis-Michel Liger-Belair’s infusion technique is more akin to steeping rather than an aggressive extraction process.
In Oregon, Liger-Belair fuses his French expertise with ripe New World grapes to create sensational wine. In the case of the Maison L’Envoye The Attaché Pinot Noir 2016, uses only a selection of L’Envoyé’s best barrels. Hence using indigenous yeast, uncrushed whole berries, and a gentle infusion-based technique. Thus ensuring complexity and exquisitely pure fruit while retaining a silky texture. In addition, a little bit of new oak brings out a Vosne-Romanée-style spice note before bottling after a full twelve months in barrel.