Capital press. (Salem, OR) 19??-current, September 09, 2022, Page 6, Image 6

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Friday, September 9, 2022
Argyle Vineyard: Supervisors invited to shine through unique wines
For the Capital Press
DUNDEE, Ore. — Most
farmers appreciate their
employees, but Argyle Win-
ery takes employee appreci-
ation a step farther, applaud-
ing its growers on the labels
of its most exclusive wines.
Three vineyard supervi-
sors have earned their way
into the spotlight. A special
program called Ojo Brilloso
showcases the vinicultural
fi nesse of Francisco Ponce,
Jose Sanchez and Hector
Cabrera. Those experienced
supervisors in 2018 chose
one block in each of their
vineyards to practice inten-
sive cultivation techniques
of their own choosing.
Three separate wines
were produced from the des-
ignated blocks, each with
artistic labels that honor the
workers who help grow the
Left to right, Argyle vineyard supervisors Francisco Ponce, Hector Cabrera and Jose Sanchez apply their skills to
special parcels of the three vineyards.
The result of the proj-
ect goes beyond the unique
wines produced from those
blocks, according to Erica
Miller, vineyard manager.
“Our supervisors were able
to utilize their hands-on
expertise to modify cur-
rent practices in ways they
thought would improve
quality and effi cacy alike,”
she said. “With some of
those modifi cations having
such a positive impact on
the vines, we have decided
to continue use of these
techniques within most of
our vineyard blocks.”
What’s more, as workers
share their discoveries and
take personal pride in their
work, the project has unex-
pectedly improved commu-
nication among employees
scattered across nearly 500
acres in Yamhill and Polk
counties vineyards, the tast-
ing room in Dundee and the
tasting room in Newberg.
allowed us to get creative
and for these supervisors to
be able to carry out ideas
and practices they believe
in. Everyone has the oppor-
tunity to see their ideas come
into action,” Miller said.
Ojo Brilloso, literally
“bright eyes” in Spanish,
refers to the focus on detail
these supervisors take in the
three selected blocks.
Hector Cabrera, at Argyle
since 2012 and supervisor at
Lone Star Vineyard in the
Polk County hills above
Monmouth, chose to work
with a parcel of Clone 2A
Pinot noir that was planted
in 2002. The parcel is at
325 feet in the south-fac-
ing “panhandle” of the vine-
yard. Cabrera cultivated
this block’s tiny clusters to
ensure that they were per-
fectly open and spaced,
allowing them to soak up
early morning sunshine.
Ponce, supervisor of the
Spirit Hill Vineyard, with
Argyle since 2004, chose
to improve a parcel of
Pommard clone Pinot noir
planted in 2014. The parcel
was in the southwest sec-
tion of Argyle’s largest vine-
yard. The entire vineyard is
137 acres in the Eola-Amity
Hills AVA near Amity. The
parcel, at 750 feet, has deep
Jory soils.
Argyle since 2008 and
supervisor of Knudsen
Vineyards in the hills above
Dundee, planted a parcel of
Pommard clone Pinot noir
that sits in the upper reaches
of the vineyard at 850 feet.
With special care, San-
chez produced a 2019 vin-
tage that highlights the deep
volcanic Jory soils of the
Dundee Hills.
The three-bottle set of
these specialty wines sells
for $150. Donations are
made to three charities
that help promote diver-
sity, equality and opportu-
nity in the wine industry —
HIVOY, The Roots Fund
and Salud. For more infor-
mation about the project,
visit Argyle’s website, or its
tasting room in Dundee.
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