Cole Danehower was a James Beard Foundation Journalism Award winner and author of the book Essential Wines and Wineries of the Pacific Northwest. He covered the Oregon and Northwest wine scene from 1998 until he succumbed to cancer in 2015.


2012 Pinot Noir, Revana Vineyard Estate, Dundee Hills $48

Meaty aromas of blackberry and plum fruit, forest floor humus, and a touch of tar lend a savory accent to the nose. Similar qualities show in the mouth, with rich blackberry flavor surrounded by hints of vanilla, cocoa, and earth. Dense texture packs plenty of fruit, and will likely develop beautifully with some cellaring.

2011 Riesling, Revana Vineyard, Dundee Hills $28

Electrum color leads to opulent signature riesling scents of spice (sometimes called “petrol”), fresh hay, and wet concrete. On the palate focused and zingy flavors of white peach, pear skin, and dried hay have power and authority. Dry in style, tart green apple and clove-spiked pear notes also appear on the resounding finish.


2012 Pinot Noir, Red Hills Estate, Dundee Hills $85

Vibrant purple color is distinctive. Intense aromas of crushed plums and berries mix enticingly with dried basil and garden humus. Silky texture delivers complex sweet black cherry-focused flavors with clove, rose hip, toast, and black tea. Excellently balanced acid and tannin frames the fruit well. A big wine with surprising delicacy.

2012 Pinot Noir, Renegade Ridge Estate, Dundee Hills $85

Pastel-hued dark purple color introduces meaty pinot perfume with herbal accents. Surprisingly light on the tongue, sweet raspberry flavors are ringed by notes of cinnamon, cola, and violets. Strong structure isn’t obtrusive, bright acids add verve, and the finish is reminiscent of caramel-coated apples.


2009 Brut, Knudsen Vineyard, Dundee Hills 75% Pinot noir, 25% Chardonnay $50

Brilliant white gold color. Biscuity scents of dried grass and rain-spattered stones with a leesy edge. Great energy to the ripe peach and dried apricot fruitiness, along with a potent streak of minerality, all accentuated by the fine mousse. A mighty tasty sparkler.

2012 Pinot Noir, Spirithouse, Knudsen Vineyard, Master Series, Dundee Hills $75

Deep and meaty scents of forest floor, caramel, and dark red berries greet the nose. Tart strawberry-centered crushed red fruits swaddle the palate with beautifully balanced fruit, acid, and fine-grained tannin. Elegant, yet potent, the finish is lingering and memorable.


2012 Pinot Noir, Summit Vineyard, Dundee Hills $35

Sweet cherry blossom scents emerge from a background of molasses and caramel, all of which reappear on the plush palate. A floral overlay adds an uplifting note. Pliable tannins add weight to the medium-length finish.

2012 Late Harvest Riesling, Wine Country Farm Estate, Dundee Hills $30

Lavish honey gold color and scents of burnt sugar and freshly crushed herbs are diagnostic of a true “sticke” dessert wine. Syrupy mouth feel is redolent with sweet, spicy notes of petrol and dried herbs. Oozy with soft honeyed flavors.


2009 Pinot Noir, North 45, Sims Estate Vineyard, Dundee Hills $33

Caramel-like scents mingle with vanilla and clove notes on the sweetly spicy nose. As the wine opens plum and blackberry notes rise from a toasty background. Good structure and freshening acidity brightens the dark-fruit finish.


2011 Pinot Noir, Two Row, Proprietor’s Cuvée, Dundee Hills $60

Herbaceous nose of rosemary, graphite, brown spices, and crushed red fruits. Candied cherry flavors are ringed by a sense of dried leaves, and rhubarb pie. Thanks to great acidity, this wine has a zesty oomph that keeps the flavors alive throughout the lingering finish.


2012 Pinot Noir, Brigitte Catherine, Dundee Hills $54

Restrained smells of bacon fat, sage, and red fruit take a few moments to emerge, but are soon complemented by lavender potpourri notes. In the mouth the wine is supple and viscid, carrying well-defined red cherry and boysenberry flavors backed by soft tannins. The finish is pleasingly sweet and fruity.


2011 Pinot Noir, Juliard Vineyard, Dundee Hills $33

Herbal scents of dried rosemary and garden soil with cherry fruit aromas and rose blossoms developing in the background. Soft, with red cherry flavors and a restrained style. Finishes nicely with furry tannins and a touch of cola.


2010 Pinot Noir, Meyer Vineyard, Dundee Hills $25

Perfumed herbal scents combine with white fruits on the appealing nose. Light and tangy on the tongue with dancing flavors of kiwi, lime, and pineapple. The mouth feel is pliant and plush, yet there is a lively freshness to the flavors. A touch of spicy citrus peel appears on the finish.

2011 Pinot Noir, Estate, Dundee Hills $55

Pretty, scarlet color introduces elaborate smells of cherry blossoms, crushed strawberries, freshly-turned earth, and caramel. Equally involved on the palate, flavors of red fruits, ground coffee, cola, and violet pastilles are satisfying. Excellent fresh acidity adds to the charm of this tart, fruity, and elegant wine.


2010 Pinot Noir, Meyer Vineyard, Dundee Hills $65

Spicy scents of tea leaf and basil envelope a pure core of crushed red fruits on the nose. Velvety in the mouth, the wine bathes the palate with juicy tart strawberry and Bing cherry flavors, with aromatic accents of lavender and rose hips. Gentle acidity and pliable background tannins add to the dried cherry-rich finish.

2009 Pinot Noir, Dundee Cuvée, Dundee Hills $65

Dark purple core color devolves to rose petal red at the rims. Assertive aromas of bright cranberry and strawberry fruits are framed by subtle tar and black tea tones. On the tongue the soft texture contrasts interestingly with forward and fresh flavors of raspberry and pomegranate, with red licorice and cola accents. Full and broad, yet with a lively character that extends throughout the finish.


2012 Pinot Noir, Drouhin Family Estate, Dundee Hills $45

Gleaming rosy-purple color is eye-catching. Aromas of dried autumn leaves and damp mushrooms contrast delightfully with forward, sweet cherry scents. Beautifully balanced on the palate, flavors of fresh and tart cherry fruit are softened by gentle tannins hanging in the background like a red velvet curtain. The finish is long and fruity with a hint of toast.

2011 Pinot Noir, Laurène, Dundee Hills $65

Puissant perfume of crushed red fruits, black tea, dewy pine needles, and toast keep you coming back for more sniffs. The silky texture and plush heft of the wine on the palate is addicting, and the layered tastes of ripe cherry and blackberry, molasses, anise, and pie crust are compelling. Superbly balanced throughout the tasting experience.


2012 Chardonnay, Evenstad Reserve, Dundee Hills $55

Gleaming golden color leads to deep aromas of ripe peach, pears, and a wet concrete aspect that are alluring in combination. The peach quality shows up delightfully in the mouth, along with a slight bit of pear skin and a citrus peel bite. Deft use of a touch of oak gives the wine weight and character.

2011 Pinot Noir, Evenstad Reserve, Dundee Hills $65

Medium-hued dusky maroon color, with meaty aromas of plum and raspberry fruits accented with a hint of mint, give an initial allure to the wine. Forward sweet/tart red fruit has a mouthwatering brightness and a dulcet rhubarb note on the mid-palate. A succulent and satisfying wine with strong structure and a firm finish.


2010 Chardonnay, Dundee Hills $28

Clean and bright scents of lemon verbena and wet concrete are mouthwatering. Tart lemony flavors have a zippy quality thanks to jaunty acidity. A touch of rosemary herbs and a citrus peel bite add interest. The finish is lively and lengthy.


2012 Chardonnay, Raven, Dundee Hills $25

Mineral scents of slate and fresh hay are inviting. In the mouth peachy flavors are round and pliable, with sharper lemon curd and orange peel accents. There is a pleasing pear skin bite and verbena mint tone to the finish. This is a wine that has delicacy and power all at once.

2012 Pinot Noir, Bishop, Dundee Hills $65

Heavy aromas of ripe pinot fruit mingle with richly floral notes of rose petals and violets. Soft and lush in the mouth, high-toned, sweetly ripe cherry flavors contrast nicely with the lush mouthfeel and soft tannins in this elegantly restrained wine. The finish has power, with a gentle herb quality adding interest.


2011 Pinot Noir, Niederberger, Dundee Hills $50

Clean and pure aromas of ripe red berries shine from a background of soft sage and brown spices. Focused cranberry and cherry fruits are tart, clean, and lean on the palate, but with a pleasing sun-dried fruit leather aspect. Brittle tannins are a touch forward, but really just serve to give the fruit depth. Finishes long with floral potpourri notes.

2011 Pinot Noir, Prince Hill, Dundee Hills $50

Lively rose red color has a vivacious appeal that contrasts with savory scents of molasses and caramel-dipped strawberries. Vibrant cranberry notes shine against an eclectic backdrop of cardamom, tangerine peel, and rhubarb. Pleasingly jaunty and quite complex, stand-up acidity and subtle wood tannins add length to the satisfying finish.


2013 Chardonnay, Estate, Dundee Hills $65

Polished white gold color. Scents of talc and white peach are forward and pretty. In the mouth piercing peach flavors are potent and lively, with a touch of apricot around the edges. There is a creamy texture to this wine, yet the acidity gives the flavors a spirited energy. The finish is lingering and full of fruit. Beautifully made.

2012 Pinot Noir, Lange Estate Vineyard, Dundee Hills $70

Intense and dark purple color gives way to expansive scents of crushed cherries, mint-tinged vanilla, and dried earth. Plush on the palate, ripe flavors of raspberries, cherries, and a touch of blueberry are dense and layered, yet combine with lovely notes of violets. Stand-up (not standout) tannins and sufficient acidity combine with a sweet and floral finish in this full and complex wine.


2010 Pinot Noir, First Time, Dundee Hills $45

Soft red to burnt umber color with rich scents of basil-accented dried cherries. Red berry fruit flavors are framed with good acidity and structure. A floral undercurrent of rose blossoms gives the finish appeal.

2012 Pinot Noir, Jaguar, Dundee Hills $68

Dark maroon color with purple edges. Smoky aromas include graphite and toast notes hovering above the more gentle red fruit tones. In the mouth the core cherry fruit has an edge of candied lavender combined with a sense of wet leaves. The finish marries red fruits, smoke, and earth.


2005 Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills $75

Dusky maroon color and smells of damp leaves, lavender potpourri, and dried fruit speak to a more mature wine. Fruit-sweet and plush on the palate, raspberry flavors are wrapped in pleasing floral notes. Noticeable tannins on the brightly tart finish.

2006 Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills $55

Fragrances of burnt brown sugar, cola, and dried plums are savory and intriguing. Remarkably fruit-sweet flavors of raspberry and strawberry are complemented by a sense of licorice and baking spices, with a touch of molasses. Finishes a bit soft, and a tad hot, but with a sustained sense of fruit.


2012 Pinot Noir, Bella Vida Vineyard, Dundee Hills $65

Gentle wafts of dried autumn leaves and mint-accented cherry fruit rise from the glass. Supple texture carries bright tastes of pomegranate and strawberry with a subtle earthy quality. Fresh acidity adds verve and pliable tannins give body to the piquant finish.

2012 Pinot Noir, Élevée Vineyard, Dundee Hills $65

Subtle campfire smoke scents blend with smells of cherry pie and cinnamon for an appealing nose. Medium-weight in the mouth, plump and tart blackberry fruit has a sense of force thanks to good acidity and firm structure. Dried herbs and a tart plum-skin aspect add dimension on the tangy finish.