Rose & Arrow Estate | Oregon
Rose & Arrow is the brainchild of Mark Tarlov, the man who started Evening Lands, and Vosne-Romanée producer Louis-Michel Comte Liger-Belair, who in turn invited legendary terroir consultant Pedro Parra to join the project. Their aim was simple; to make the best Oregon wines by uncovering the region’s Grand Cru terroirs. Together with on-the-ground winemaker Felipe Ramirez, the team have spent the past 6 years decoding the land of the Willamette Valley, looking at plots within plots, and then focussing in on specific seams of rocks within these plots.
Today, they own or farm over 60 hectares of land dotted across 5 of Oregon's 7 AVAs. The majority of the harvest goes into a separate project called Chapter 24 with only the very finest plots, just over 2 hectares (less than 4% of the harvest) producing the 100-350 case cuvées that make up the Rose & Arrow range. These plots, generally east facing on volcanic soils from the mid slopes, are those that provide the aromas, textures and flavours that the project is looking to unearth.
In winemaking terms, the techniques are almost identical to those practiced in Louis-Michel’s Vosne domaine, and yet the aim has never been to produce Burgundy from Oregon, but moreover to allow Burgundian thinking to shape the way one might produce the very finest wines from the Basalt soils of the Willamette valley. In the winery, the same coopers are used as in Vosne, with specific barrels selected and flown over from France each year.
The wines are organised around three tiers. The ‘Village’ wines represent small vineyards holdings that share similar rock compositions. Up one level you find the ‘Articulates’, where specific rocky sections within vineyards, those that display especially individual characteristics, are separated out and bottled up. Finally, at the top of the tree sit the ‘Prime Expressions’; three wines that hail from very specific pleats and folds of rock that provide complex, very complete expressions of Pinot Noir from specific geologies.