Viognier – A Rhone Varietal Grown at Soloro Vineyard
The popularity of Viognier has grown rapidly in the last few years.
In the Rhône Valley in France there has been an estimated 500% increase in acreage allotted to Viognier in the last two decades. These grapes are now being grown with very good success in southern Oregon.
Viognier grapes were originally grown with the intent to blend it with other wines to add extra a different character to other well known varieties. For example, blending viognier softens the edges of the Syrah and changes the flavor as well.
However, as Rhône varietals become more popular, Viognier vintages have begun to stand on their own in specialty shops, fine restaurants, and supermarket sales.
Viognier can be a difficult grape to grow. It is prone to powdery mildew in damp or humid climates, and is notorious for small yields. The grape must be picked at the peak of its maturity to demonstrate the full expression of its unique flavor.
As with other varietals, a miscalculation of its peak can result in grapes high in sugar, with too little acid, which produces wines with little flavor and too much alcohol.
Some feel that the best wine comes from vines that are at least 20 years old, but the quality of Viognier wine from Soloro Vineyard is extraordinary, even though our vines are only 5 years old.
As we have written elsewhere, this is because the growing conditions for the Rhone varietals is excellent here along the Applegate Wine Trail of southern Oregon.
Come by for a tasting to see for yourself how well our wine demonstrates this!- Tim & June Navarro
The scarcity of old growth vines, difficulty of cultivation, and necessity of the finest wine-making skills, combine to make Viognier a rare and sometimes expensive wine.
The attraction of the wine is the powerful and rich apricot and orange blossom aromas with a hint of honey. Despite this sweet sounding profile Viognier can be made in a traditional dry style that appeals to the Chardonnay drinker among us. The distinctive elements of the grape remain powerful even after blending.