Says William Gaffney in PinotFile, "The McKinley clan has a long history of farming in Oregon, dating to the early 1900s when George Angus McKinlay dry farmed cherries, apples, prunes and nuts on his farm in the Eola Hills region of Oregon's Willamette Valley. Great-grandson Matt Kinne worked as an assistant winemaker to Bob Sessions at Hanzell in Sonoma County, California before returning to his family's farming roots in Oregon. He has farmed grapes on the slopes of Parrett Mountain in the Chehalem Mountain AVA since 1990. Pinot Noir is the sole wine produced with the Estate Vineyard supplying half of the fruit with the remainder sourced from neighboring Chehalem Mountain vineyards. New plantings will provide more estate fruit in the coming years. Pinot Noir is crafted using native yeasts, 25% new oak, no additives, and bottled unfined and unfiltered. 20 vintages have been crafted in the cellar of the Kinne's home."
After graduating from U.C. Davis and working a short stint in production for Gallo, Matt Kinne became assistant winemaker for California Pinot Noir pioneer, Hanzell, in the early 1980s. From there, due to his Pinot passion, Matt moved to Oregon and became winemaker for Adams Winery which was then bought by Rex Hill. Establishing his own winery and vineyard with his wife Holly in 1987, the couple has eschewed marketing, preferring to dedicate their energy towards producing the finest quality Pinot Noirs possible. This wine is a blend of primarily younger estate vines with some old estate vines grown in volcanic clay soils in the Chehalem Mountains AVA. Their winemaking philosophy incudes extremely low yields (1 - 1.5 tons per acre, whereas 4 tons is average) and minimal intervention winemaking. The grapes are destemmed and given 6-8 days of pre-soak with 22-25 total days in fermenters. The wine is then aged 9 months in 5-to-15-year-old French oak and lightly filtered at bottling.