ANALEMMA

The analemma is a figure 8 shape made by the Sun’s annual migratory path between the northern and southern hemispheres as seen from the Earth. This pattern is caused by the tilt of the Earth’s axis and is a visual cue of the Sun’s movement through the calendar year. To winemakers Steven Thompson and Kris Fade, the analemma is a symbol that reflects their focus on place. After all, every place on Earth has its own unique analemma – a kind of place-based fingerprint.  After years working as a cycling guide, Steven Thompson decided to switch to wine full-time in 2000 after graduating from the Enology and Viticulture program at Walla Walla Community College. It was in Walla Walla that Steven met Kris Fade, his wife and business partner, and the two embarked on a one-year overseas adventure, making wine as far away as New Zealand. They would eventually return home to Oregon to start Analemma in 2010 when they received an opportunity to lease one of the oldest vineyards in the Pacific Northwest, Atavus Vineyard. Sitting at 1,700 feet in elevation on the Washington side of the Columbia Gorge, Atavus has been dry-farmed site since it's inception in 1968 and is planted to Gewürztraminer and the rare, Swiss-originating Mariafeld clone of Pinot Noir. Steven and Kris also make wine from the cool-climate Oak Ridge Vineyard (also on the Washington side of the Gorge), and in 2012, they began planting Mosier Hills Vineyard right outside of their winery in Oregon, where they are experimenting with everything from Godello to Mencía to Trousseau (in addition to their cherry orchards). All of the vineyards are farmed organically and they have begun incorporating biodynamic treatments of nettle, seaweed, and ground silica to boost the plants’ immune system. In the cellar, they work methodically to minimize their fingerprints on the wines, working only with native yeasts and keeping heavy oak and filtering to a minimum. Through deliberate handling, they strive to capture the essence of each of the unique vineyards they work with, creating a window into the site’s soil, microclimate, and culture.