Torii Mor: Wines True to the Land and the Climate

toriiPerched high in the Dundee Hills of Oregon, Torii Mor Winery is a testament to the philosophy that premium quality, handcrafted Pinot Noir is best when it expresses individuality and the terroir from which it originates.

Winemaker Jacques Tardy achieves this harmony and balance through attentive cultivation of the vines and minimal handling of the fruit in the cellar, resulting in extraordinary wines of distinction.

Tardy joined the Torii Mor team as head winemaker late in 2004. As a native of Nuits Saint Georges in Burgundy, France, he brought eight generations of winemaking heritage to the table.

Trained in Viticulture and Enology at the prestigious Lycee Viticole de Beaune, Tardy migrated to California in 1982. By 1990, he had worked his way up to the blossoming wine region of the Willamette Valley. In the fall of 2004, Tardy joined Torii Mor to fulfill his desire to make world-class Pinot Noir with some of the best and most notable vineyards of the Willamette Valley.

Since then, his wines have earned numerous accolades and helped brand Torii Mor as one of the most accomplished producers of Burgundian-style Pinot Noir. With an emphasis on elegance and restraint, Tardy’s style of winemaking embodies the concept of terroir.

Torii Mor’s own Olson Estate Vineyard has been the cornerstone for production since its initial vintage in 1993. In the years following, Torii Mor has accommodated its growth in production by sourcing fruit from a number of vineyards throughout the Willamette, Umpqua and Rogue Valleys.

Currently, Pinot Noir fruit is sourced from four of the six sub-appellations of the Willamette Valley, as well as out of the Umpqua Valley. The Rogue Valley is sourced for warm-weather grape varietals such as Syrah, which is used in Torii Mor’s Port wine. By sourcing fruit from these distinct appellations, the concept of terroir is especially evidenced by the diversity in the vineyard-designate wines produced.

With the building of its gravity-flow winery in September of 2007, Torii Mor emphasized its commitment to environmental preservation. Both the winery and Olson Estate Vineyard have achieved recognition for leading the industry in sustainable and environmentally conscious practices.

Among the certifications that Tori Mor has achieved:

  • LIVE (Low Input Viticulture and Enology) Certification — Torii Mor practices responsible stewardship in wine production and vineyard cultivation by limiting water consumption and fuel usage during production and using only environmentally safe chemicals and fertilizers in the vineyard.
  • LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification — In March of 2010, Torii Mor’s winery facility received 42 points from the U.S. Green Building Council, designating it a LEED Gold Certified building. To achieve this level of certification, specific criteria and guidelines must be met:

Sustainable Site Development — The roof of the winery has a low “Heat Island Effect” impact due to the Photovoltaic System that is installed and the metal roofing used, which has a low Solar Reflectance Index.

Energy Efficiency — A 47.5kW Photovoltaic System was installed on the roof to optimize energy performance and create on-site renewable energy.

Water Savings — Low-GPM (gallons per minute) aerators were installed to reduce overall water usage by 30%.

Material Selection — Recycled content was used in the building materials wherever possible and helped reduce construction waste by 60%.

Indoor Environmental Quality — Only low-emitting paints and coatings were used inside the winery during and after construction to meet Indoor Air Quality Performance standards.

Gravity Flow Winemaking — By utilizing the natural slope of the land, Torii Mor is able to diminish the use of pumps during winemaking and henceforth reduce energy usage.

Native Plants — By planting foliage that is native to the region, water consumption is limited by eliminating the need for irrigation.

It all adds up to an eclectic mix of wines — Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Viognier, vineyard-designated bottlings and cuvees of Pinot Noir, plus a Syrah Port dessert wine — that deliciously express the land and the climate from which they originate.

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Posted in Wine and the Environment
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