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Articles in category: Wineries in the News
March is Women's History Month. I caught up with Maria Ponzi, Luisa Ponzi and Alison Sokol Blosser to talk about women in the wine business, and I asked a female friend in the wine business, Christine Collier, what she would want to know from Maria, Luisa and Alison.
What are your most vivid memories of growing up in your parents' vineyard and winery?
Maria: "My family was working most of the time on the weekends in the vineyard and the dark cellar. My most vivid memory would be laying in bed and listening in on the conversation in the ...(Read Full Article)
Education has always been Erica Landon’s passion, giving her an avenue to share the world of wine and support the industry that she has become immersed in…
Erica began her career working in restaurants throughout Oregon from the top of Mount Hood to the heart of the Willamette Valley. Ultimately, she fell in love with teaching, and through this avenue helps to make wine less intimidating and introduces students to the incredible diversity of styles and methods of production found throughout the world.
In 1998 Erica started working at Oregon’s landmark Timberline Lodge where she began working with ...(Read Full Article)
Oregon winemaker Andrew Beckham of Beckham Estate Vineyard is obsessed with making every part of his wine himself—even the vessels he uses for aging. A high school ceramics teacher by day, he transforms 800 pounds of clay—sculpted over two weeks, dried for six weeks and baked in a kiln for 40 hours—into each gigantic clay urn for his A.D. Beckham wines. He is meticulous about the research: He worked with a chemist to develop a food-safe clay blend and experimented with various shapes to induce optimal fermentation (egg-shaped pots, he learned, naturally stir wine as it ...(Read Full Article)
Like so many Californians who have traveled north to Oregon to establish a winery, Scott and Rae Ellen Baldwin had owned a walnut orchard in the Central Valley of California and lived in Carmel Valley. They bought a hazelnut orchard near Forest Grove and planted a vineyard, but once they acquired the future De Ponte (“duh pawnt”) Cellars site in 1999, they sold the Forest Grove property to Apolloni Vineyards.
DePonte Cellars is a small winery located on Archery Summit Road in Dayton, Oregon, in the heart of the Dundee Hills, with Domaine Drouhin Oregon, White Rose Estate and Archery ...(Read Full Article)
Spring break is the ideal time to let loose, have a drink and appreciate the scenery we Oregonians are blessed with – and there’s no better way to do both than touring local wineries.
Skip the usual bars for a day and take a trip to some of the best views and the best wines in the area.
King Estate Winery:
80854 Territorial Hwy Eugene, Oregon 97405
Open: Wednesdays-Sundays 11-8 p.m. and Mondays and Tuesdays 11-5 p.m.
Walking through the large glass front doors, you immediately smell the oaky wood beams that line the ceiling. Within the open ...(Read Full Article)
If you don’t enter, you can’t win.
That’s what the team at Serra Vineyards thought when they entered five of their wines in the 2015 Seattle Wine and Food Experience Competition, sponsored by Seattle Magazine. Most of the entries came from Washington State and Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Serra Vineyards was the only Southern Oregon winery to enter.
Serra Vineyards owners, Krissa and Scott Fernandes, along with former Troon marketer, Liz Wan, have a consulting firm, VinoVerse, to promote Southern Oregon wines and tourism. Last year, they attended the Seattle event simply to publicize this area, but ...(Read Full Article)
Much of the hip vibe pouring from Portland’s urban winemaking community seems to be emerging from the block of Division and Southeast 35th Place.
And while the name might signal something divisive, that’s not the feel Thomas and Kate Monroe have created. Rather, It’s just the opposite at their Southeast Wine Collective in Portland, and the exciting wines they’ve bottled as Division Winemaking Co. made them an ideal selection as Wine Press Northwest’s Oregon Winery to Watch for 2015.
“They have such a great attitude,” said Jacksonville grower/winemaker Herb Quady of Quady North, our ...(Read Full Article)
When two business entities share the same name, usually the larger and better known — even if it wasn’t the first — sics its lawyers on the other and sends a cease-and-desist letter that orders a name change.
That Olympic National Park has kept its name is a legal triumph in the face of the International Olympic Committee's usual habit of pouncing on anything that even begins to type the letters O, l and y.
So Damian Davis, whose Seattle-based Rainier Wine was starting a new label using Willamette Valley, Oregon, grapes to produce Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris wines ...(Read Full Article)
Of all the wines they’ve made for themselves and others, the 2012 Ferris Wheel Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir best tells the story of Terry and Sue Brandborg.
“When someone comes into the tasting room in Elkton, Ore. and says, ‘If I’m going to taste just one wine, which wine should it be?’I tell them that one,“ Terry said. “This is the reason why we are here.”
On the other hand, that Pinot Noir from the recently established Elkton, Oregon American Viticultural Area is just one reason why Brandborg Vineyard and Winery has been named Wine Press Northwest ...(Read Full Article)
Oregon is famous for its delicious wines and scenic vineyards that can provide wonderful escapes from city hub-bub and noise.
Tyee Wine Cellars near Corvallis is about as grass roots as it gets. Owner Dave Buchannan, a pioneer in the Oregon wine industry, boasts of five generations of family that have worked their Oregon Century Farm.
He said that in the mid-1970's, he turned away from dairy to plant wine grapes. "Not very many people knew much about wine making back then and I really didn't know much. I actually had 3 or 4 wine making books and ...(Read Full Article)
Wine and the Department of Motor Vehicles don't typically mix well. But on car bumpers, the two make an excellent pairing.
Introduced in May 2012, the "Wine Country" license plate is eye-catching. And it's selling briskly. In 2013 and 2014, it was the state's third-most popular plate. Take that, "Salmon" and "Cultural Trust"! And as soon as the limited-edition "Pacific Wonderland" sells out, "Wine Country" is on pace to slide into second place behind the perennial favorite, "Crater Lake."
As the wine-themed plate approaches its third anniversary in circulation, oeno insiders might be tempted to make a ...(Read Full Article)
Wine can be good on its own.
But wine really shines when reflected in the flavors of food. For many of us, figuring out which wine to serve with which food can be somewhat vexing.
That's one of the great things that attending wine-pairing or wine-tasting dinners helps with. You get to experience a variety of wines with a variety of foods. It helps give you an idea of what to serve with what.
One of the best deals in town, or just south of town, can be had at Willamette Valley Vineyards.
Since the remodel of the Estate ...(Read Full Article)
Come this summer, visitors sipping on some of Oregon's most renowned sparkling wine will do so in a new wine hospitality center and tasting room at Argyle Winery in Dundee.
SERA Architects has designed a master plan for the winery's re-imagined tasting room, which is being transformed out of existing cellars and a barrel room. The new tasting room will provide contemporary settings for visitors to taste Argyle's wines. It will also include a library displaying a portion of the winery's past vintages dating back to its initial 1987 release.
The new tasting room is an ...(Read Full Article)
Pinot Noir, the finicky, elegant grape of Burgundy provides Oregon's Willamette (pronounced will-AH-meht) Valley with its wine tradition. Though the Valley also produces wines made from Riesling and Pinot Gris, the region is known for their Pinot Noir production.
The Willamette Valley is cradled by forest and farmland with winding, two-lane roads that snake between wineries well-marked by blue signs. "Cities" outside of Portland exist, but these mostly resemble small town huddled together; an address in capitol city Salem might look rural indeed.
Not all vineyards are set up for tasting, though a large majority are. Weekends are the ...
The 45th Annual Greatest of the Grape brought together the best wine and food of Douglas County Saturday night.(Read Full Article)
The Greatest of the Grape is the oldest wine pairing event in the Pacific Northwest.
"It's 28 wineries paired with 14 local restaurants and the restaurants will have two foods, one for each winery," said event committee chairman Charlie Becker.
People vote for the best wine and food pairing as well as the highest honor, the Greatest of the Grape.
"It's not only a lot of fun, but it really creates a unity between the restaurants, the wineries, the ...
♦ Cafe Castagna has unveiled a new flat-price wine list featuring $45 bottles, and only $45 bottles. Local highlights from the huge bottle list include rosé from Colene Clemens, Crowley chardonnay, Trisaetum and Teutonic pinot noir, and Fausse Piste grenache. Glass pours will still be available, and you can check out the full list online.
♦ In February, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) announced it has established The Rocks District of Eastern Oregon's Milton-Freewater as the newest American Viticulture Area (AVA). The AVA is situated on an alluvial fan of the Walla Walla River, and lies entirely ...(Read Full Article)
It’s been 45 years since Dick Erath stopped by Jim and Loie Maresh’s place in the hills above this town to see if they might be interested in planting wine grapes.
The Mareshes knew next to nothing about wine grapes, but they were fascinated. So they began to plant Pinot Noir on their farm. Today, some of those original grapes remain, and they are among the most cherished here in the heart of Oregon wine country.
Last week, the Oregon wine industry honored the Mareshes with its Founders Award at the annual Oregon Wine Industry Awards Dinner in ...(Read Full Article)
In a series of educational presentations on Oregon wine that the Oregon Wine Board commissioned me to deliver throughout the Northwest, four of my slides contained references to the Walla Walla Valley AVA (including maps) as part of Oregon, and one ...(Read Full Article)
Two pioneering Oregon wine couples and a veteran vineyard manager won awards at the Oregon Wine Board's annual dinner in February in Portland. Jim and Loie Maresh earned the Founders Award. They founded Maresh Red Hills Vineyard in ...(Read Full Article)
[Editor's note: This interview was conducted in 2008, prior to David Lett's death.]
In 1966 David Lett and his wife, Diana, spent their honeymoon planting the first commercial pinot noir grapes in Oregon. "I wanted to make the great American pinot noir," Lett says. "I figured there was no climate cool enough in California to do that."
That was the beginning of The Eyrie Vineyards, which went on to attain cult status and help start Oregon's pinot noir industry. David Lett and his son Jason, who serves as The Eyrie Vineyards' winemaker and vineyard manager, talk about ...(Read Full Article)
I was fortunate to be one of the 250 people who attended The Eyrie Vineyards Fiftieth Anniversary Vertical Tasting in Portland, Oregon, this past February 22, 2015, hosted by Diana and Jason Lett. This momentous event commemorated fifty years since David Lett planted the first Pinot Noir vines in the Willamette Valley of Oregon on February 22, 1965.
I have been enthralled with the story of David Lett and wrote extensively about the first plantings of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir in a previous issue (“Oregon Pinot Noir: Who Planted First?”: www.princeofpinot.com/article/ 1090/). It was not surprising then ...(Read Full Article)
There are very few, if any, Oregon wineries that can call on such a vast library of wines to conduct a vertical tasting of three varietals over five decades. Tasting older vintages in pristine condition is a unique opportunity few people, either critic or consumer, have the opportunity to experience.
For old wines, it is not a matter of scores or comparative quality, but the realization that aged wine is unique in the secondary characters and surprises it offers. As noted wine writer Hugh Johnson remarked, “Young wines are exciting; old ones can be moving.” The wines in this vertical ...(Read Full Article)
David Lett grew up on a farm in Utah, graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Utah in 1961, and was in San Francisco waiting to begin dental school when a road trip to Napa Valley wine country led to a life-changing epiphany. David visited Souverain Cellars, one of the few California wineries producing premium still dry wines at the time. He was so inspired by the founder and winemaker at Souverain, J. Leland “Lee” Stewart, he would later remark, “I turned winewards.” He was offered a job at the winery, but his parents encouraged him ...(Read Full Article)
At a Gault-Millau-sponsored tasting held in Paris in 1979 called the “Olympics of Wines of the World,” a number of non-French wines placed near the top. The following year, Robert Drouhin gathered an international distinguished panel of judges who blind-tasted the wines against burgundies from the cellars of Domaine Drouhin in Beaune. A 1959 Domaine Drouhin Chambolle-Musigny came in first, but David Lett’s 1975 The Eyrie Vineyard South Block Reserve Pinot Noir took second, ahead of Domaine Drouhin’s Chambertin. Bill Hatcher, formerly manager at Domaine Drouhin and now a partner in A to Z Wineworks in Oregon ...(Read Full Article)