Grape(s): 100% Pinot Blanc
Localization: Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA
Tasting Notes: This Pinot blanc has a youthful, pale golden color and brilliant transparency that is pleasing to the eye. The nose is full of minerals with delicate citrus and floral notes. It’s lovely. Though bone dry, a sweetness of fruit in the mouth nicely balances the racy acidity. This wine evokes an alpine white, with all of the freshness and rarified air along with the smell of mountain snow.
The Domain: Kelley Fox Wines is a small winery I created in 2007 and my father, Gerson "Gus" Stearns. Though I have lived in the Willamette Valley for over 32 years, I love Oregon more every year. The first vintage (2007) started with just over 100 cases. The annual case production is now around 5000 cases from vineyards, including the historic Maresh Vineyard, Hyland Vineyard (1988 Coury Clone Pinot), Freedom Hill Vineyard(barrel-fermented Pinot blanc, Pinot noir, and Chardonnay), Weber Vineyard(1983 and 1988 Pinot), Durant Vineyard (Chardonnay and Pinot gris), Dux Vineyard (Chardonnay), Carter Vineyard (1982 old vine), and Canary Hill Vineyard.
I've been a full-time, year-round, on-the-floor Oregon Pinot noir winemaker since 2000. My education includes a B.S. in Psychology and a minor in Biology from Texas AM University. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with dual degrees in Biochemistry and Biophysics from Oregon State University and was admitted to the PhD program in Biochemistry.
Before completing the doctorate, I changed my path to pursuing winemaking. I learned winemaking not from a classroom, textbooks, or other regions but from Oregon winemakers who had put in some serious time. My dear friend and former employer, David Lett of The Eyrie Vineyards, influenced me. David was the ultimate iconoclast who pioneered the Oregon wine industry in the 1960s.
My winemaking experience includes Torii Mor, Hamacher, and Eyrie, and ten years as a winemaker at Scott Paul Wines (August 2005 to about mid-April 2015). Since then, I have happily worked for my own winery exclusively.