Montebruno is a winery like no other in the USA. It is the project of Joe Pedicini, deriving the name his grandmother’s maiden name, Angela Montebruno. Joe’s approach to wine has been very much inspired by his grandmother, as she taught him how to make wine while doing it for friends and family, as was common in Italy. She used the old traditional way to make wines, following the practices the her forefathers were using and passing from generation to generation, using minimal technology and additives, relying on the fruit and following the laws of nature. These laws, very often, can also be found in the biodynamic approach, although Joe’s grandma, like many of her time, never heard about biodynamic or even organic winemaking.

Joe in the cellar

Joe’s family emigrated from Italy to New Jersey.  While he still lives on the East Coast, he decided to develop his wine project in Oregon, where he has now been producing fantastic wines for more than ten years. His approach to wine is very “old world”, some might say Burgundian. He searches first and foremost for the expression of the fruit and its terroir, pushing the concept of single parcels, working very closely with farmers doing good natural work growing the grapes organically or biodynamically. In Joe’s book, there is no room for the use of vinification techniques that would alter that expression, whether it would be heavy use of oak, the addition of commercial yeasts or other tricks used by industrial wines. His only addition is minimal sulfites at bottling. Joe’s work is very aligned with the values and principles of minimal intervention but always is looking first at maintaining the quality of the wines. We believe he is making one of the purest pinot in Oregon, really being able to express the area, the terroir and the fruit.

The wines:

Eola-Amity Hills 2015

Montebruno Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hillls 2015 bottle
  • Red Wine
  • 100% Pinot Noir 
  • Crawford Beck Vineyard 2014, Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley
  • Volcanic soil, clay-loam overlaying some ancient marine sediments 
  • Slow, cool fermentation carried out by indigenous yeast in small, open-topped vats. No additives at all. The free run juice is transferred to neutral oak barrels where the wine develops for about one year before being bottled unfiltered.
  • Unfined, unfiltered
  • Production: 3600 bottles 

A lovely Pinot Noir slightly on the wild side. As ever with Montebruno’s wines, shows a great balance between fruit and acidity. Extraction is quite high as compared to others, but acidity and freshness remain. It’s bringing notes of black berries or dark cherries more than red fruit often found in the pinot noir. It also expresses a wild and almost smokeyness that makes it delightfull. Nice spices notes and very refined tannins. 

Gewurztraminer 2016

  • Oak Ridge Vineyard
  • Colombia Gorge Washington
  • Organically farmed
  • Old vines, high elevation
  • Fermentation and aging in stainless steel tanks
  • 50% of the fruit pressed whole cluster
  • 50% of the fruit fermented with two days skin contact
  • Vinified separately
  • Blended at bottling
  • Light second fermentation in bottles
  • Unfined, unfiltered
  • Production: 2100 bottles

Montebruno’s Gewurztraminer is a unique wine, and certainly unlike what you might expect from a Gewurztraminer. Very pleasant and joyful, bringing a small amount of residual sugar but still holding lot’s of freshness, as in all Montebruno’s wine, and avoiding to be dull or heavy, as off-dry wines can often be. It’s also a wine that brings a slight fizz, brought by a second fermentation in the bottle, that can sometimes be the best thing you might want to feel in your palate! 

Montebruno 2019 Rosé

  • 100% Pinot Noir
  • Organic farming
  • Spontaneously fermented
  • Assemblage before bottling of two wines:
  • 75% of a  15 year old Pommard grapes from the Umpqua Valley AVA
  • Direct press, whole cluster, fermented in stainless steel tank
  • 25% young wines of Pommard 115 from Willammette Valley AVA
  • 2 days skin contact fermented in stainless steel tanks
  • Minimal so2 added before bottling
  • Production: 150 cases

A super balanced and fresh rosé that is extremely clean and crunchy. Sorry for the cliché, but this might be a favorite for grilling sausages and vegies and enjoying this outdoor looking at the sun getting ready to go to bed!