Moe Momtazi was born in Iran and lived in the Iranian city of Shiraz. He graduated with an engineering degree from the United States. After graduating he and his wife Flora returned to Iran.
During the Iranian revolution and hostage crisis in the late 1970’s-early 1980’s they escaped the country and ultimately entered the United States and filed for political asylum. After immigrating they settled in McMinnville. He always had an interest in wine as his father and grandfather used to make wine in Iran. Some of their Iranian wine was made from the local red grape variety called Shahani. On April 1, 1997 he purchased a 496-acre abandoned wheat farm near McMinnville, and since then his property has grown to 560 acres.
In 1998 he planted the first 13 acres of vines. Over the years the vineyard has grown to about 260 acres. Most of the vineyard is planted to Pinot Noir with small amounts of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and Riesling. Grapes are sold to a number of Willamette Valley wineries. The Momtazi’s practice biodynamic farming and the vineyard became Demeter Certified (the strictest of all biodynamic certifications) in 2004.
What makes Maysara unique is that there is over 600 feet elevation gain in the vineyards. From the property’s lowest point at 120 feet to around 600 feet, the soil is clay and loam based (similar to most of the valley). From 600-780 feet, there is Jory soil (a red earth loaded with iron and mineral deposits). Quite a bit of the McMinnville AVA has this top soil. What makes this part of Maysara’s vineyard special is that there’s 10 feet of this earth before the base of loam and calcareous sub-soil. Only the fortunate have access to this part of the Estate: the wines of Maysara (of course), and St. Innocent sources a wonderful patch of land that sits at the crest of the Estate’s highest point.
The 2017 Autees is a slightly richer style of the Pinot Blanc, tending towards ripe fruit notes of apricot and lychee. The floral scents in the nose are honeysuckle alight on a cool breeze. The upright acidity beckon you back again, with ample minerality on the dry, clean finish. Stellar with the firmer cheeses, fresh, ripe fruit and subtly herbed seafood.