Seth Morgen Long – skateboarder/wine merchant/philosopher, in no particular order – was one of the first characters we encountered on our Oregon adventure in 2015. He’s best mates with Jim Maresh and runs a small wine business, servicing the Portland area with smart French wines. Burgundy is in Seth’s blood: he spent a year in the Côte d’Or working with Etienne de Montille and is absolutely crazy about the region. On returning home to his beloved Willamette Valley, he made some 2014 Chardonnay from some very smart fruit he bought from Yamhill Vineyards – the oldest grower in McMinnville on the ancient marine sediments, identical to those in the Shea Vineyard. The wine was mightily impressive and Josh Raynolds, writing in Vinous, wrote a glowing review, concluding “an impressive maiden effort for this small producer.”
We agreed to start working together from the 2015 vintage, and, boy, can Seth make Chardonnay!
In a region without limestone – and thus often lacking that citrus cut we crave from great Côte de Beaune whites – Seth somehow manages to create zingy, lip-smacking and yes, citrus-slaked Chards that are absolutely sublime. Production here is still very limited but this will grow over the coming years and be a very exciting project to follow.