A Day in the Willamette Valley Part III: Lenné

Part I here

Part II here

When you talk to Steve Lutz about Lenné, you will hear him say two things. First, he will tell you, like a proud father, that his grapes grow in the worst soil in Yamhill County. Why is it the worst? The soil at Lenné is peavine, and according to Steve, “You wonder how anything grows once you start digging into it.” To him, though, this is ideal for growing grapes. He has Pinot Noir clones Pommard, 114, 115, 777 and 667 planted on the site.

The second thing he will tell you is that the Lenné story starts in England, not France as the name would suggest. The winery is named after Steve’s father-in-law, Len. Len lived on a chicken farm west of London and raised his family there. In the late 90’s, the farm was sold and replaced with lovely homes. Through the sale of the farm, Steve and Karen were able to put a down payment on the 21 acres upon which Lenné sits. Len has since passed away, but his farming spirit

The view from Lenné
The view from Lenné

The wines that Steve produces are magnificent. The LeNez is a blend of all of the clones planted around the property, whereas the remainder of the Lenné wines represent the best of the best from either the vineyard or the clonal variations from each vintage.

To be able to taste through the different wines at Lenné is a treat, and I highly recommend that you make the trip to the vineyard with the worst soils in the county. Take a bottle or two home with you as well. You won’t be disappointed.

Disclaimer: My tasting fees were waived in exchange for a blog post.

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