Categorized | Oregon Wines, Reviews

A red and white Cowhorn – Review

By Duane Pemberton
Winery website:

Cowhorn winery, located Jacksonville Oregon, is one that’s committed to making biodynamic Rhone-varietal wines. Unlike most wineries in Oregon, this one is not at all close to the Willamette Valley – instead it’s closer to the California border, in the Rogue Valley AVA.

2010 Spiral 36 – W.E.P. Rating: 120%

Technical Data:

  • Blend: 40% Viognier, 30% Marsanne and 30% Roussane
  • Brix at harvest: 22.9
  • TA: 4.5 g/L
  • ph: 3.5
  • Vineyard Sources: Estate: Blocks 3 and 6
  • Cooperage: 25% New and 75% neutral French oak
  • Alcohol: 13.3%
  • Production: 300 Cases
  • Price: $22

Nose: I get notes of lemon peel, blood orange, white pepper, honeysuckle, chalk dust and melon.

Taste: Refreshing combination of cantelope, honewdew, cucumber, lemon zest and spice. This is a white that has one of the most insanely good mouthfeel’s I’ve had from a white – thanks to the neutral french oak barrels and good fruit. Easily one of the better white wine values I’ve had in a long time.

2008 Syrah74 – W.E.P. Rating: 100%

Technical Data:

  • Blend: 100% Syrah
  • Brix at harvest: 21.8 – 23.6
  • TA: 4.74 – 5.46 g/L
  • ph: 3.14 – 3.49
  • Vineyard Sources: Estate: Block 1 and 5
  • Cooperage: Aged 9 months in 47% new French oak, 53% neutral French oak
  • Alcohol: 13.8%
  • Production: 775 Cases
  • Price: $35

Nose: Bright cherry component right off the bat that’s be accompianed by notes of road kill, mud, horse stable, eucalyptus, and spice.

Taste: This is a very “bright-tasting” syrah in that it doesn’t have that “deep, dark fruit” aspect to it but that’s one of the reaons I dig it – bold and different in a great kind of way. Don’t get me wrong, there is a really nice complexity of cherry, raspberry and a spalch of rhubarb on the end but it’s going to take some syrah lovers for a ride and that’d a good thing. Excellent acidty, fruit and tannin – drink now or hold for 4-10 years.