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Oregon Weather and Vintages – It’s Complicated

By Catherine | On Jul 19, 2015 | No Comments

Because of my passion for Oregon Pinot Noir and many friends in that region, I keep an eye on the weather.  During summer visits in 2012 and 2014, I experienced heat waves with temperatures that I didn’t think were common in the Northwest. Oregon averages about a dozen days of 90° or higher per year.  However, the past three years…

Mira Mural

Mira Winery’s Aqua Aging Experiments Continue

By Catherine | On Dec 1, 2014 | 1 Comment

In February of 2013, I posted an article about Mira Winery and its experiment with aging wine in the ocean–which happened to be right here in Charleston Harbor.  Those first cases of Cabernet Sauvignon were retrieved in May 2013 with excellent results.  The wine tasted like it was two years into the aging process, not a mere three months.  A…

Oregon Pinot Noir - Note the Color Difference from those in CA

Sass Winery

By Catherine | On Aug 1, 2014 | No Comments

I had the pleasure of meeting Jerry Sass, owner and winemaker for Sass Winery, about two years ago here in Charleston at a wine pairing dinner. When plans for my trip West were firming up, I emailed Jerry and asked it if would be possible to stop by, as he isn’t open to the public and I wanted to be…

Ocean Wine Aging

Aqua Aging?

By Catherine | On Feb 28, 2013 | No Comments

An unusual experiment is taking place right here in Charleston Harbor.  Mira Winery of Napa Valley, CA, submerged four cases of 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon to test the effects of “ocean aging.”  The bottles were treated with additional wax seals and placed in specially designed steel mesh cages that allow the water to circulate around the bottles. The wines are in…

Oregon 8-12 029

Back to Willamette

By Catherine | On Aug 26, 2012 | No Comments

On Sunday, I packed up and headed south, back to Willamette Valley.  I checked into Ken Wright’s Winery Lofts, feeling like I had “come home.”  Carlton’s Walk in the Park was in progress, so I caught the trolley to the park.  It is an annual festival to benefit local charities and includes wineries, food, art, and music.  The wineries included…

20120820-085551.jpg

Day Three – Field Trip to WillaKenzie Estates

By Catherine | On Aug 20, 2012 | 2 Comments

Friday got off to a fast start with an Argentine Food and Wine pairing brunch at 10:00 a.m. I wasn’t hungry and I wasn’t ready to drink, but neither of those factors were relevant. My favorite pairing was a Beef Empanada with Raisin Balsamic, Kalamata Olives, and Red Pepper Puree with Bodega Catena Zapata Alta Malbec 2009. The spice and…

Luvina at McCrady's

Recent Vintages for Oregon Pinot Noir

By Catherine | On Feb 25, 2012 | No Comments

A friend and I made a return visit to McCrady’s for dinner last night and it was another extraordinary, well paced feast for the eyes and palate.  Pictured is the fish course I chose, lupina, with fresh sorrel sauce, fingerling potatoes, and sun chokes.  I took a bottle of Ken Wright 2008 Savoya Vineyard Pinot Noir to drink with dinner.  Like Ken’s Meredith Mitchell Vineyard Pinot that was enjoyed with family…

KW Blend

An Excellent Oregon Pinot at a Bargain Price

By Catherine | On Dec 10, 2011 | No Comments

Hello, everyone.  I hope you are all well and enjoying the pre-holiday doings.  Let’s go back to Pinot Noir, specifically Ken Wright’s fabulous 2009 blend.  I have been busy sharing this delightful wine with friends and everyone loves it.  Ken created this blend for the first time in 2009 for the purpose of being able to offer one of his…

Guadalupe Vineyard

Oregon Wine Country – Redux

By Catherine | On Oct 30, 2011 | No Comments

I’ve been home for close to two weeks – how can that be?  I miss the winery and the friends I made while visiting.  The 2011 harvest started in earnest mere days after my departure and I hope to be able to get some updates on how it is progressing. In summary of what I observed and learned during my visit, I now understand what…

IMG_0082

Ken Wright Cellars – Fifth and Last Day in Oregon Wine Country

By Catherine | On Oct 19, 2011 | No Comments

6:15 a.m. alarm.  Seth Miller, one of the vineyard managers picked me up at 7:00.  It was a dry and cool morning, perfect for the task ahead.  Tanager is owned by Ken’s brother and sister-in-law so this was a special morning for them-the first harvest of their new vineyard.  It typically takes at least 3 years for a new vineyard to…

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