Lingua Franca

"The beginning of all great wine...

...is a vineyard with a unique, complex and exceptional expression of place". Getting a little hackneyed for some of us? Don't. The tenets of great winemaking are resilient and unchanging: nature, terroir, DNA, origins. Correct, but..

It is not so simple.

Who decides what is good terroir? A-ha! Epiphany moment there? Lingua Franca (more about its name later) of Oregon at Willamette Valley, and within it, this very particular Eola-Amity Hills and Bunker Hill, is the chosen one, by none other than Master Sommelier Larry Stone (only 172 people in the world hold this title). If you don't already know, it is brutally and savagely difficult to pass the Court of Master Sommeliers' Masters Examination. Even for Larry, whose uber-impressive career as a restaurateur and sommelier spans the likes of Four Seasons, Charlie Trotter's and Rubicon. Of course, there is another owner. Great minds think alike. Burgundy's illustrious Dominique Lafon envisioned the gargantuan potential of Larry's exceptional vineyard for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and offered to collaborate. We can all trust in the experienced foresight of the wine industry's dab hands.

That is only the beginning.

To awaken the best of its innate potential, nature needs to be nurtured. Twenty-three blocks were planned with different combinations of rootstock and budwood to identify the varying soil conditions. Serious business. Lingua Franca is also farmed on low-impact, organic and biodynamic principles. This is imperative. Certainly not a fad. It is thoughtful farming that gives better health to the vines. And we have all learned recently that if we are healthy, we can all happily roam free and conquer the world like we used to. Same for grapes - the healthier, the better.

On a separate note, we held a Lingua Franca wine dinner at The American Club. The wines were a sell-out.

Oh, we did not forget. Lingua Franca means "speaking frankly". There you are, a winery that is as honest a reflection of terroir as it could get. Honesty is always the best policy, everyone agrees?

Now on special offer.

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