Kelley Fox 'Nerthus' 2022

Kelley Fox 'Nerthus' 2022

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The vibe: I’m inventing a new style of wine called peach wine. It’s not totally orange, it’s not pink, it’s peachy. And it tastes like peaches too! Stonefruit meets powdery minerality in this refreshing peach wine. It’s a made entirely of a “white grape” blend. I use air quotes because Pinot Gris grapes have pink-tinted skins, and since some of these grapes see time on the skins á la orange wine, hey presto we end up with a sunrise-colored hue. That was a lot of fruit-talk, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention how stoked I am to debut Kelley Fox to the shop. Some of you might be familiar with her – she’s made a name for herself since opening her winery in 2007, and has been at the bleeding edge of the Oregon winemaking scene ever since.

The winemaker: Kelley Fox has been making wine since 2000, after pivoting from her degrees in Psychology and Biology and pursuing a PhD in Biochemistry. Rather than learning about wine in a classroom setting, she spent time in the vines with winemakers themselves, including her dear friend and inspiration, David Lett of The Eyrie Vineyards. Yeah, that Eyrie. They were the first to plant Pinot Noir in the Willamette Valley and first in the US to make Pinot Gris in 1970. With her connections, she is able to source from some of the great vineyards in the Willamette. Everything is hand-harvested, fermentation is spontaneous with natural yeasts and she even plays music for her wines. Her bottles are 100% natural, while remaining composed, refined, and true to the Willamette Valley terroir.

The geeky details: 34% Early Muscat, 34% Pinot gris, 18% Riesling, and 14% Pinot blanc. All fruit is whole cluster pressed after picking, except for a couple of fermenters of skin-contact Pinot gris (one pigeage per day, pressed at dryness). It was allowed to complete malolactic fermentation. Élevage - 5mos stainless tanks until bottling.

Serve: With a chill.

Food pairing: Hmmm, peaches?? Peach salad? Pesto peach chicken with burrata. Chips and peach salsa. Or omg a peach cobbler with ice cream.

Album pairing: Peaches & Herb – 2 Hot!