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WINE PRESS

Vol. 14, No. 3

N O R T H W E S T

FEATURES

28 Carlton, Ore. This once sleepy little town in Oregon is now the Wine Capital of Oregon

40 Winning Wine Lists If you’re looking for a restaurant with a great wine list, check out the results of our 13th annual competition.

54 Unusually Good Whites These aren’t your boring been-there, done-that white wines. They’re different, in a good way.

64 On the Riverside This waterfront restaurant in Hood River serves up some surf and turf to go with local wines.

Fall 2011 DEPARTMENTS 6 Wine Nose A toast to a one-of-a-kind man

8 A Distant Perspective B.C.’s greatness waits to be discovered

10 Market Grapevine Pacific Coast’s best oyster wines

12 Swirl, Sniff & Sip Adventures in grape growing

14 Urban Sips Listen up, and peel me a grape

16 Poet Laureate Conflict

18 21 22 74

10 Things to Do Northwest Wine Events Northwest Wine News Vintage Musings Cuvée a legendary blend

COVER STORY On the cover and this page: Bucolic vistas await visitors to Abbey Road Farm, one of the many attractions in Carlton, Ore. Story begins on page 28. Photos by Jackie Johnston


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WINE PRESS N O R T H W E S T

Wine Press Northwest is for those with an interest in wine — from the novice to the veteran. We focus on Washington, Oregon, Idaho and British Columbia’s talented winemakers and the wineries, vintners and restaurants that showcase Northwest wines. We are dedicated to all who savor the fruits of their labor. Editor-in-chief: Andy Perdue Phone: 509-582-1405 Fax: 509-585-7221 E-mail: editor@winepressnw.com Managing editor: Eric Degerman Phone: 509-582-1404 Fax: 509-585-7221 E-mail: edegerman@winepressnw.com Editor at-large: Jon Bauer Tasting editor: Bob Woehler Tasting panel: Winnie Alberg, Kristine Bono, Kate Michaud, Justin Michaud, Mike Rader, Ken Robertson, Coke Roth, Dave Seaver, Paul Sinclair, Bob Woehler, Eric Degerman, Andy Perdue Master facilitator: Hank Sauer Facilitator: Daniel Skorski Page designer: Jackie Johnston Columnists: Jon Bauer, Dan Berger, Teri Citterman, Braiden Rex-Johnson, Ken Robertson, Bob Woehler Poet laureate: Jordan Chaney Contributing photographers: Jackie Johnston, Spencer Johnson Contributing artist: Ken Susynski Ad sales: Parker Hodge, 509-585-7257 E-mail: phodge@tricityherald.com To subscribe: Subscriptions cost $20 U.S. per year for four issues. Mail check, money order or credit card number and expiration date to address below or subscribe securely on our Web site. Subscriptions and customer service: Hildanna Gerlach, 800-538-5619 e-mail: info@winepressnw.com Letters to the editor: We encourage your thoughts and comments about our publication and about Northwest wines in general. Write to us at the address below. Fresh Press: Find fresh reviews of recently released Northwest wines. The free weekly PDF can be downloaded at winepressnw.com/freshpress Free weekly newsletter: Sign up for our free Pacific Northwest Wine of the Week e-mail newsletter at winepressnw.com Address: 333 W. Canal Drive Kennewick, WA 99336 © 2011 Wine Press Northwest A Tri-City Herald publication W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M

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the wine knows BY ANDY PERDUE

A toast to a one-of-a-kind man

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et us pause a moment to honor a man who helped make a lot of things possible in the Northwest wine industry. Bob Woehler, Wine Press Northwest’s tasting editor since the magazine’s inception in 1998, passed away Aug. 24. He was 79, and he left us way too soon. We called him “Big Woe.” He was 6-foot-6. He lived life in a large way. He embraced it all and rarely held back. He bellowed with a loud, gruff voice, but he was a puppy dog once you got to know him. Bob did not grow up appreciating wine. Instead, he sort of fell into it. As the agriculture reporter for the Tri-City Herald in Kennewick, Wash., he was assigned to cover the opening of a new winery in 1976. It was Preston Premium Wines north of Pasco. Back then, Washington had fewer than a dozen producers, and the modern wine business was barely in its infancy. But that assignment sparked something in Bob, and he had a vision for what the nascent industry could become, so he added it to his beat. Two years later, Bob talked the paper into letting him start a weekly wine column, and “Woehler on Wine” was born. He wrote it from 1978 until 2010. He tended to look for the good in people, and he wanted to recommend wines rather than trash on them. In the ’70s and ’80s, a lot of wine was being made throughout the Northwest, and Bob tasted it all. He would find the few good nuggets and focus on them and not dwell on the swill. Bob wasn’t exactly an industry cheerleader, but in a way, he was its public spokesman. While others were writing about Northwest wine, Bob was based in the heart of the Columbia Valley. He knew all the vineyards and all the people who ran them. Everyone was in his Rolodex — and he was in theirs. While he focused on Washington wine, he didn’t ignore Oregon, British Columbia or Idaho, traveling to those regions several times and becoming acquainted with such legends as Dick Erath, Harry McWatters, Dick Ponzi and David Lett. I got to know Bob well over the past 22 years. I arrived in ’89, not long out of college. A few months after I got to the Tri-City Herald, I was invited to a dinner party and was tasked with bringing the wine. Seeing as my favorite winemakers were Bartles & Jaymes, I turned to the resident wine expert for help. I don’t think Bob really knew who I was at that point — he was winding down his newspaper career and didn’t bother to learn someone’s name until he knew they would stick around and it would be worth his effort. But he com6

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manded me to go to a grocery and purchase two bottles of Merlot from a young Yakima Valley winery. At that point, I wasn’t sure if Merlot was red, white or otherwise, and I had just a vague idea where the Yakima Valley was. But I followed his recommendation, bought the wine and took it to the dinner. It was the first wine I ever tasted — since coolers hardly qualify — and it was astonishing, a revelation, a thunderbolt. It was supple, fruit-driven and approachable. I can still taste it. And while I didn’t drop everything at that moment and turn my life’s pursuit into wine appreciation, the genesis for what was to come was planted in my subconscience. Bob didn’t realize it until years later, but that simple wine recommendation nudged me down a road I might not have otherwise have traveled. For the next several years, I continued to come back to Bob for more wine recommendations and more thoughts about the wine industry. I even dabbled with the occasional wine article for the paper. Bob retired from the Herald in ’94 but continued to write his column on a twice-monthly basis. And through that time, our friendship grew. In late 1997, Eric Degerman and I came up with the idea of launching a magazine that focused on the wines of the Pacific Northwest. The first person we brought in to brainstorm was Bob, and he provided several ideas that remain the bedrock of Wine Press Northwest. Bob was an old dog in the wine journalism game, but he had no problem learning new tricks. When he retired from writing his column last year, he picked up a digital voice recorder and launched a weekly podcast. It hearkened back to his news radio days in the late ’50s in Omak, Wash., and it gave him the opportunity to talk to everyone in the industry. He equally loved interviewing industry veterans and winemakers releasing their first vintage. Bob produced 61 podcasts before he died. The last two columns he wrote about wine appear in this issue of Wine Press Northwest. One is called “Bargain Bob” and focuses on inexpensive wines; the other is called “Vintage Musings” and looks at wineries that have been around awhile. One way we plan to honor Bob is with a scholarship in his name. It will benefit students in the Viticulture & Enology program at Washington State University’s Wine Science Center in Richland. You’ll read more about this in the near future. So let us all raise a toast in honor of Bob Woehler. His legacy will live on in every word we write about Northwest wine. ANDY PERDUE is editor-in-chief of Wine Press Northwest. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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a distant perspective BY DAN BERGER

B.C.’s greatness waits to be discovered

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n a rut? Tired of the same old wine flavors in the same “big, rich, concentrated” style that has thrilled the number mongers? Tired of flabby wine? Seeking a change of pace? Want a fresh outlook on your (wine) life? I did. It was a midlife crisis and came for me nearly 20 years ago at the home of a friend who had just come into possession of a particularly famed Chardonnay from a soon-to-be iconic lady winemaker who is still lionized in some quarters. The bottle was expensive, and my former friend wanted to open it even though I had warned him I wasn’t sure I’d like it. He persisted. So we both watched, hushed, as the ice-cold liquid slipped inside the crystal. We then lifted our glasses to our philtrums (this is a great Scrabble word!) and sniffed. I winced; he had paroxysms of joy. The wine, it was an abomination, a manipulated mess that could have been made from any grape and whose malolactic aroma had notes of rancid butter. The acid, if it had any, was so soft it left it without a food with which to serve it. And the oak! Had the wine been poured on a smooth surface and left to dry, you could have made a small table from the leftovers. I immediately began to rethink this political correctness that had become so pervasive, of people swooning for all sorts of wines that had little to recommend them except that they left palates believing they had just had a kind of liquidy zabaglione, complete with the sugar. Coincidentally, it was just about then that I had my first taste of wine from the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. It was a revelation. It was a Riesling from Gehringer Brothers, and I was so smitten by it that I inquired where I could get some. I was advised to forget it. Unless I was prepared to go to Canada, the wine would never be available down here. Since I live in California, and since my onetime “wine mule” is an attorney who’d rather not be disbarred, my access to Okanagan Valley wines is limited. Which is a shame, but I can understand why B.C. wineries would not want to sell their wines in the United States. I can think of numerous reasons, one of which is the Sisyphusian three-tier marketing “system” we have in this country that has a wholesale tier more focused on sales of spirits and beer than in wine brand development. If you are reading this publication, you may well have more access to the wines of the Okanagan Valley than almost any other American. And for that you should be thankful. But if you are not actively seeking ways to get this stuff, you’re missing a treat. Why should you want it? Glad you asked. In particular the excitement is about white wine. Pinot 8

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Blanc is usually pristinely complex; Pinot Gris, a muchmaligned wine (and appropriately so in most cases) is usually far more distinctive than the usual bland stuff coming out of California, and Riesling can be an utterly superb white wine of depth and complexity. OK, you are saying, but Oregon and Washington both can do brilliant things with all three varieties. Right. But with as much naturally balanced acid levels? Rarely. B.C.’s cool nights force winemakers to make balancing decisions based on acid, and many wineries get it right so often the wines are stellar. It’s one reason why I always accept an invitation to judge at Wine Press Northwest’s Platinum Judgin each fall: I get a chance to taste some of these sensational wines. But it was at a Wine Press Northwest judging some years back when I sampled one of the most dramatic reds I had ever tasted, the terrific Kettle Valley Syrah from the Naramata Bench, a region I now realize has astounding potential for red wines. I won’t go into much detail here about which specific brands are worth seeking because in most cases this is vintage-dependent and I frankly haven’t had a huge amount of experience with the wines in formal evaluations since last fall. Still, what I have seen from B.C. has been so exciting because of the fact that the wines taste great when young but also show the aging potential to develop amazing characteristics when they get to be a few years older. Can you tell the difference between a B.C. wine and others? Not as often as you might imagine, but one of the hallmarks of these wines is their adherence to superb acid balance. Even if a white wine has a trace of residual sugar, you may only be able to detect that in the entry. The finish of the wine, based on good acidity and a nice low pH, usually displays simply superb balance. This means that it is not only possible to age the wines a bit, but if also consuming them young, the crispness in the aftertaste is appropriate for food — unlike so many of the higher-alcohol wines of other warmer regions. The bottom line of all of this is that any resident of Washington or Oregon who has a chance to get some of this stuff should take the opportunity. (And if you live in Canada? You have no excuse for not trying these exciting wines.) There is an excitement in Canadian wine that few people in the United States know anything about. DAN BERGER is a nationally renowned wine writer who lives in Santa Rosa, Calif. He publishes a weekly commentary Dan Berger’s Vintage Experiences (VintageExperiences.com). W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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northwest edge BY BRAIDEN REX-JOHNSON

Pacific Coast’s best oyster wines “Oysters are a celebration ... romantic, sexy, luminous. The right wine makes them even more so.” — Sheila Lukins The task seemed daunting. Five flights of four white wines, as many Kumamoto oysters as we cared to down, and one hour to choose the top-10 West Coast wines to pair with raw oysters on the half shell. It was all part of the 17th annual Pacific Coast Oyster Wine Competition, held last spring at Anthony’s Home Port on Shilshole Bay, just outside of downtown Seattle. Created and organized by Seattle seafood expert Jon Rowley, who calls the competition his “annual dating service for West Coast wines and oysters,” it’s sponsored by Taylor Shellfish Farms of Shelton, Wash., which provides all the oysters for judging in Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles. More than a dozen Seattle food-and-wine professionals — plus a Japanese writer and his interpreter who flew in just for the event — and I gathered on an appropriately oyster-gray day to blind-taste 20 wines accompanied by 70 dozen Kumamotos fresh from Taylor’s beds in South Puget Sound. We were strictly instructed to first smell and then thoroughly chew the oyster. Only then were we allowed to smell and taste the wine in order to rate its “bliss factor,” or the wine’s affinity with the oyster. Most experts prefer clean, crisp, dry white wines that don’t fight with the inherent sweetness (glycogen), briny, sea, cucumber and mineral flavors found in oysters. Wines that sip well on their own often don’t make suitable oyster wines. In years past, when pairing wines with oysters on the half shell, sommeliers defaulted to crisp, dry white wines, such as French Muscadet or Chablis. Anything red, rosé, oaky, sweet, hot (high in alcohol), full-bodied or overly flavorful in comparison to the oysters was a no-no. “The aromatic consonance with the oyster can be just as important as the taste,” Rowley says. “The wine should exalt the next oyster by not getting in the way. We are looking for clean, crisp-finishing wines.” Rowley’s oyster wine competition is important because it offers domestic options for raw oysters on the half shell — an increasingly popular menu item. Judging isn’t as cushy a job as one might imagine. I had difficulty switching off my brain’s “wine monitor” and focusing on the oyster first, then the wine. And, after the first two plates of half a dozen oysters, plus 10 wines, I was ready to cry “Uncle!” But press on I did, although by wine No. 15 I was experiencing a slight buzz (even though I was spitting most of my wine). And by wine 18, sensory overload and palate fatigue set in and I was ready to call it a day. I marvel at the preliminary oyster wine judges — veterans who consumed 1,200 Kumamotos and 119 wines from Washington (22), Oregon (17) and California (80) — over the 10

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Wine Press Northwest columnist Braiden Rex-Johnson, left, participates in the 17th annual Pacific Coast Oyster Wine Competition. (Photo © Spencer Johnson)

course a single week. This year’s field of oyster wine contestants was smaller than in years past, but Rowley felt the finalists were “especially brilliant.” He was grateful that no red wines were submitted (as in years past) and only one rosé. Wineries that enter the contest are (finally!) beginning to understand what qualifies as a potential oyster wine, he said. So which wines won? Four crisp Sauvignon Blancs, four refreshing Pinot Gris and two oyster-friendly blends, with three hailing from Washington, two from Oregon and five from our neighbor state to the south. 2011 Pacific Coast Oyster Wine Competition winners Washington Cadaretta 2010 sbs, Columbia Valley Chateau Ste. Michelle 2009 Sauvignon Blanc, Columbia Valley ** Hogue Cellars 2009 Pinot Grigio, Columbia Valley * Oregon King Estate 2009 Signature Collection Pinot Gris, Oregon ** Van Duzer Vineyards 2010 Estate Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley * * Prior winner ** Multiple prior winner

Braiden Rex-Johnson is a Seattle-based cookbook author, food-and-wine columnist and blogger. Visit her online at www.WithBraiden.com. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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swirl, sniff & sip BY KEN ROBERTSON

Adventures in grape growing How do cool coastal areas such as Vancouver Island and the U.S. San Juan Islands manage to produce wines from local grapes when it’s often a struggle for warmer climates such as Eastern Washington and British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley?

Growers in cool-climate areas have adopted a number of tactics, some of them almost as old as agriculture and winemaking, others as fresh as produce picked this morning. Among the tactics are practices as old as rocks and soil. On Vancouver Island, for example, the vineyards at Cherry Point Estate Wines have fist-sized rocks stacked around the vines to soak up heat on sunny days and hold it into the evening. In the spring, newer technology allows Cherry Point and other vineyards to wrap the vines in heavy clear plastic that protects the vines from late frosts but allows the spring sunlight to come through. Using techniques such as these and with careful site selection, Vancouver Island is having some remarkable success with Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris. This past summer during Victoria’s annual celebration of wines, one of the events, called Vancouver Island vs. the World, a group of about 40 wine lovers, in a blind tasting, compared four island wines with wines from elsewhere in the world. Most surprising to me were the Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir comparisons. A Pinot Grigio from Averill Creek was tasted with Cloudline Winery’s Pinot Gris from Oregon. Having tasted lots of high-acid wines from Vancouver Island since 2006, I was surprised at how well winemaker Andy Johnston kept its acids in check and at its display of mango and tropical fruit aromas and luscious honeydew melon flavors. The crowd liked it better than the Cloudline, but both were impressive. In the Pinot Noir comparison, between a New Zealand wine from Ata Rangi and from Starling Lane’s 2009 vintage, the island wine again was much preferred. I frankly have little experience with New Zealand Pinot Noir, but the B.C. wine was awfully well made. The island climate also produces Maréchal Foch, one of the best French red wine hybrids, and several German and Austrian wine grapes, many of them bred specifically in the past century for the cool climates of those two countries. Among the best are Siegerrebe, a cross between Madeline Angevine and Gewürztraminer; Ortega, a cross between Siegerrebe and Müller-Thurgau; and Zweigelt, a cross between Blaufränkisch and St. Laurent. Though little known in the United States, all three are rather widely grown in British Columbia, and in Austria, Zweigelt is the most popular red wine grape, with more than 16,000 acres planted to it as of 2008. Lopez Island Vineyards in Washington’s San Juan Islands has had some notable success with its Siegerrebe, winning a highly coveted double platinum award in 2007 from Wine Press Northwest with its 2006 and a double gold with its 2007 in the magazine’s 2008 platinum tasting. 12

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In addition, the variety is being offered by several wineries in B.C.’s Fraser and Okanagan Valleys, on Vancouver Island and on Washington’s westside, including such well-known brands as Blue Grouse Vineyards, , Gray Monk Estate Winery and Mount Baker Vineyards. Ortega has joined its German relative in the offerings of many B.C. wineries because it also is a dependable cool-climate white that produces good yields and can be made in a variety of styles to suit a summer patio, fresh Northwest seafoods and even curry dishes. Zweigelt and its relative Blaufränkisch suffer in spades from the same problem facing many German-named wines — we English-speaking types have trouble pronouncing their names. But you shouldn’t let that make your wine-tasting decisions for you. Instead, taste them. Eastern Washington residents have been drinking delightful Blaufränkisch under the better-known name of Lemberger, as made by Kiona Vineyards on Red Mountain, since 1980. Both these reds make into versatile wines with some spicy aromas, bright cherry, raspberry and blackberry aromas and flavors and are typically earthy and fruit-forward. It’s popular with a number of wineries such as Arrowleaf Cellars and Summerhill Pyramid Winery near Kelowna in B.C.’s Okanagan Valley, Zanatta Vineyard on Vancouver Island and Garry Oaks Winery on Salt Spring Island. Wine words: Crémant and Mousseux

Ah, we return to France for these delightful words, more necessary than ever since the champions of Champagne now insist we should apply that term only to wines made in the region of France that proclaims itself the creator of the world’s first sparkling wines. Whether the French actually should get credit is a matter for another day. What’s really important to wine lovers is Champagne is not the only region of France that makes fine sparkling wines; thus, the Gallic purists have blessed us with two delightfully descriptive words for sparkling wines made in the hinterlands at the hands of outlanders — Crémant, derived from the word from whence we get creaminess, and Mousseux, similarly found in our word mousse (think chocolate). Wines designated Crémant must be aged for at least one year and harvested by hand. And they are less bubbly than Champagne, as a rule. For what it’s worth, the Germans and Austrians call their sparklers Sekt, the Italians Spumante, the Spanish Cava and the Portuguese Espumante. So long as it’s méthode champenoise, not that cheap sparkling impostor also created by a Frenchman — Charmat, which is fermented in a large vat, not in a single bottle — it’s all more than likely to be pretty good. KEN ROBERTSON, a Wine Press Northwest columnist since its founding, is a retired newspaperman who has been sipping Northwest wines and writing about them since 1976. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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urban sips BY TERI CITTERMAN

Listen up, and peel me a grape I hear this all the time: Some wines, like some people, feel that no one wants to really know them. Without thought, people just drink them. Lavish in their loveliness, then forget their name and move on. So, let’s take a little time and really get to know these wines. Swirl like nobody’s watching. Swish with reckless abandon! Suck it in and roll it around like that kiss you see only in movies. Sometimes it’s worth it. And sometimes, it’s not. And sometimes you come across those wines that have a little too much confidence, are a little too random or are a little too friendly. More is more, I say. I spent some time on my deck this summer with a bottle of Gilbert Cellars 2008 Left Bank. I was really digging the ripe tannins and bold blackness, and I was dying to know more. ME: Gilbert, what do you want people to know about you? GILBERT: Well, you know I love boat shoes! ME: OK, I’m not sure I need to know more about that. So, when people describe you, what do you want them to say are your best characteristics? GILBERT: Moral constipation. I’m not talking politics. Not on our first date, not on our 200th date. ME: OK. But just to be clear, I didn’t ask about politics, and we’re not on a date. GILBERT: Oh whatever. I mean, I have opinions, but I have better things to do than rant about the state of the union. ME: If you could suggest how people should describe you, what would you say? GILBERT: Like the small of a woman’s back. ME: Wow, that’s pretty sexy. GILBERT: Yes, but if you let your dog lick you on the mouth, we're probably not going to get along. And ... moving on. I was drinking a glass of SYZYGY 2007 Red Wine and anticipated authenticity and creativity. I delved deeper. ME: Tell me, what’s the one thing you want people to think about when they first taste you? SYZYGY: Amuse me or lose me! ME: Interesting. Would you consider yourself complex? SYZYGY: Pop me a cork, French me a fry. ME: Um, does that mean you’re a Bordeaux blend? SYZYGY: Just entertain me. Champagne me! ME: Champagne seems like a weird descriptor. But then I’m talking to a bottle of wine, so who’s the weird one? How would you describe yourself? SYZYGY: Best way to cheer me? Cashmere me. ME: Does that mean you consider yourself full of bright fruit? Dark fruit? Maybe soft? Maybe a little smooth? SYZYGY: Love me and leave me in luxury’s lap! ME: So don’t take this the wrong way, but it seems like you’re quoting a Diana Krall song. SYZYGY: I’m getting hungry! Peel me a grape! ME: I’m sorry. That just seems wrong. 14

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And, there you have it folks! Give it up for SYZYGY, the wine that’s fun to say but has cannibalistic tendencies! Next, I sidled up to a bottle of Pandora 2009 Syrah at the Auction of Washington Wines. ME: How’s it going? PANDORA: I’m an incredible catch. ME: Really? And as subtle as a gun. PANDORA: Well I like guns. And God! And Gold’s Gym! ME: Kudos, for the alliteration. What is the one thing you want people to know about you? PANDORA: First, we would have a pre-dinner cocktail at a hip establishment where only the finest couples go and engage in meaningfully, deep conversation. Then, we would continue on to dinner, where I would order the finest wine. My focus will be on you! Only you! Always you! ME: You sound like you want people to know what you’d be like on a really awkward first date. Do you consider yourself silky and spicy or more of a rich fruit bomb? PANDORA: I gotta go! Sorry, my VCR is busted and I don’t want to miss Murphy Brown. I’ll call you! I promise, baby. You seem like the kind of girl who will treat me bad and break my heart, so then I can write a country song and become famous. Moving on again. So, last on my list was a Helix 2009 Aspersa from Reininger Winery in Walla Walla. I really was looking forward to trying this wine and WOW, was it an experience! ME: Helix, how are you? HELIX: I like you already. ME: Well, thanks, I like you, too. What’s not to like about a lovely blend of Chardonnay, Viognier and Semillon? HELIX: Well, once you go white, you never go back. ME: That’s an interesting way of saying it. What’s the one thing you want people to know about you? HELIX: Well, you seem pretty sharp and quick-witted, so I have to point out that I don’t drink. ME: You don’t drink? Now might be a good time for me to point out that you’re a WINE! HELIX: Yeah, I’m thinking this must be fate! ME: What? HELIX: I’m a sucker for hair that has a mind of its own. You’re totally my type! Funny. I’m really not. I learned in college that beer goggles had their place. Lately, as an adult, it seems I need little reminders a little too often. Cheers! With sass and attitude, TERI CITTERMAN is a Seattle dweller and an eager wine enthusiast. She is the author of the latest edition of Best Places to Kiss in the Northwest and the Northwest Wine Journal. She writes An Urban Sip Wine Blog at anurbansip.com. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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poet laureate BY JORDAN CHANEY

Conflict I’d like to propose a toast ... to dreams and to the bold Men and Women that dare to dream them to the wild-eyed visionaries that plant seeds in their hearts with hopes to one day see them come to pass for prayers sweeter than papayas that rise from the deepest darkest depths of our cellars where my heart is pumping out prayers like mass to the foresight that illuminates our foreshadows that whirl in the glass of our souls to those robust farm workers clad in jeans, flannels handkerchiefs and hats for all the Mamas and Papas that wear their skin like worn leather who are wrinkled and red like raisins and whose wrinkles hold stories like wine jugs and whose woes are ten miles deeper than any winemaker’s pocket book

vines in vineyards for lilac diamonds to the god-like elders for our aging wines and their timeless guidance this one’s for floral notes sung by the brown folks for the flower vendor the one that puts the rose in rosary for a gorgeous culture that rose from dirt so openly for arms that open like blossoms for womb-like palms that deliver the grape from bondage and carry it from conception to fruition and beyond the goblet for the seed that dreams itself larger than grapes and transcends wine, song, couplet and sonnet to cherry pickers like rebels with barreled chests waging war with their wages who hurl their dreams like Molotov cocktails into our amber waves of grain whose knuckles are gnarled and strained for the work of a dreamer is stainless and honest for the protagonist, the antithesis, the subplot and most importantly the conflict you see I know copper-skinned women and men that work for pennies

this one’s for them for all of the grandmas and grandpas that look like stucco whose eyes look like ice wines with frost outlining their irises for the crow’s feet perched perfectly on their eye lids and their white hair flowing like broken clouds passing through windmill slices for century-old spines like gnarly 16

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I know Mothers that never feel beaten machine-like Mothers that clean hotels by day sell Avon at night and work the fields on the weekends so this one’s for freedom for children with eyes like plums whose hair looks like dark chocolate

waterfalls pouring out and catching the sun for precious sunflowers with green thumbs that have never been embarrassed of their hardworking parents that pick pears and pluck asparagus this one’s for the families that get scattered for work all across the Americas it’s ugly I know a girl that was held for ransom at birth just beneath the border by bad men known as Coyotes who you gotta pay to smuggle dreams into this country it’s beyond ugly it’s heart crushing so this ones for the underbelly for the juggling of children over rivers for dodging dogs & militias for sliding dreams passed the law writers passing laws higher than the barbed wire their casting the people they’re pruning and the hopes they’re smashing to the Mighty Migrant Worker may your hands and spine always nurture the vine may the cups of all your tomorrows be filled with the fruits of your labor and may the dreams you dream of find freedom in the land of your neighbor To you Jordan Chaney is a spoken-word poet who lives in the heart of Washington wine country. His first book is Double-Barreled Bible, and he has released Mighty Peasant on MP3 and CD.

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activities

great things to do

in Northwest wine country

BY ERIC DEGERMAN

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hen this column of things to do in Northwest wine country got off the ground in 2005, the vines could be rather light at times. That’s far from the case now. There’s such a cornucopia of events to choose from there are just as many that I regret leaving out for various reasons — even after writing up the item weeks, sometimes months, in advance. I collect ideas and news releases throughout the year, saving them either in an email file or a folder in my hard drive in hopes that a “second annual” wine event does well enough to become a “third annual.” Grab your family and/or friends and see what is out there in this world of wine. Because none of us knows if this vintage will be our last. Corks and canvas. There must be reams of book clubs in the Northwest that use wine as the carrot to lure folks into joining. Then there are Lisa Cryder and Stefanie Hare, fans of Washington wine who created a business that blends tasting with painting. “We don’t offer painting classes, we offer painting parties,” Hare says. This month marks the first anniversary of Corks and Canvas, and the landscape has grown to acrylic painting seminars each month at three tasting rooms in the Puget Sound — Apex at Alder Ridge Tasting Room in Woodinville, Urban Enoteca in Seattle and VoVina Wine and Vodka Tasting Martini Bar in Kirkland. More wineries are lining up to stage events, too. Cost is $45, which includes instruction, supplies and “the first glass of wine for inspiration.” Go to corksandcanvasevents.com for listings. 18

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B.C. food meant for B.C. wine. Looking for British Columbia’s version of Taste Washington? It’s the seventh annual Chef Meets Grape. One detail that sticks out to this Yank is “attendees must be 19 or older.” I’m guessing most teens who go to Western Washington University are keenly aware of the drinking age in B.C. The foodand-wine pairing event Sept. 22 returns to the Vancouver Convention Centre, where chefs from 12 of the Ocean Wise partner restaurants will be serving. This year, more than 75 wineries are offering more than 250 wines, all paired with B.C. cuisine. Among those pouring are Black Hills, Burrowing Owl, Cassini, CedarCreek, Gehringer Brothers, Gray Monk, JoieFarm, LaStella, Nk’Mip Cellars, Road 13, Stag’s Hollow, Tinhorn Creek, Township 7 and Wild Goose. Cost is $91. Go to winebc.com. Stomp your way to the world title. Willamette Valley Vineyards, our 2011 Oregon Winery of the Year, would love to say they helped find this year’s World Grape Stomping Champion. And on Sept. 24-25, the Turner winery plays host to the 21st Oregon Grape Stomping Competition. Each two-person team — a stomper and a swabber — pays $10 per heat. Preregistration and reservations are required. The tandem that produces the most juice wins a trip for two to beautiful Sonoma County, home of the international finals. My money would be on those two Vikings from the credit-card commercial. Admission is $10, which comes with a free Riedel glass. The stomping is held in conjunction with the winery’s Harvest Celebration, so there will be plenty of award-winning finished juice to sample. For additional pressings, go to wvv.com/whatsnew.

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Kickstand for Kiwanis. Few places in Northwest wine country are as well suited to serious cycling winesters as the Yakima Valley. An ideal weekend to jump into the saddle and hit the road is for the annual Kiwanis Wine Country Trek, which is Sept. 24-25. It’s a two-day, 120-mile round-trip from Yakima to Prosser and back to Yak. The ride starts at 8 a.m. Saturday and ends at 6 p.m. Sunday, taking in Yakima Valley vineyards, hop fields and orchards. Registration is $110 and includes a Saturday gourmet dinner, admission to the balloon glow, overnight camping in Prosser, Sunday breakfast, support vehicle and break stops. Proceeds go to the Apple Valley Kiwanis for community and youth service projects. This event hits particularly close to home with the sudden passing of Wine Press Northwest tasting editor Bob Woehler, whose civic activities included serving as a Kiwanis lieutenant governor. Pedal over to applevalleykiwanis.com.

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Brats and kraut in Spoke. Since 1982, Mike Conway has been posting low scores at the golf course and getting high scores with his wines at Latah Creek in Spokane. On Oct. 1-2, he’ll be giving his clubs a rest as he and his family celebrate Oktoberfest at their winery near the Spokane Valley Mall. In addition to their lineup of deliciously affordable wines, Mike will serve up bratwurst and sauerkraut for guests. Go to latahcreek.com.

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A new meaning for Canoe wines. Confused by Canoe Ridge the winery in Walla Walla, Canoe Ridge the vineyard, Canoe Ridge the place where Chateau Ste. Michelle red wines are made and Canoe Ridge the spot overlooking the Columbia River named by the Corps of Discovery? W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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W I N E C O U N T RY Here’s a chance for the public to gain first-hand knowledge of Canoe Ridge Estate in Washington’s Horse Heaven Hills for the first time. In 1991, Chateau Ste. Michelle and vineyard manager Mimi Nye began planting Canoe Ridge Estate. Two years later, Ste. Michelle built its red winemaking facility not in Woodinville but near this vineyard. This year, Chateau Ste. Michelle wanted another venue for revenue so it created a seasonal public tasting gallery at its Canoe Ridge Estate Winery. No appointment is required, and tastings of CSM’s single vineyard and Ethos lines are complimentary. On Oct. 8, during harvest, there will be two tours of the facility. Admission and samples are free, and El Gaucho will sell appetizers. Want a complimentary tasting glass? Send an RSVP through stemichelle.com. Otherwise, the gallery is open Thursdays through Sundays before it shuts down for the season Oct. 16.

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Your passport to Idaho. Several wine regions in the Pacific Northwest have enjoyed success using “passport” programs for touring. Now the Gem State has one. The Idaho Wine Commission has joined forces with the Idaho Statesman newspaper to encourage readers in the Treasure Valley to become drinkers and support their wine industry. Those who visit each of the 20 participating wineries gain access to exclusive deals. Passports are sold through the Statesman for $30, and the promotions are good through April 30. The grand prize given to the lucky bearer of a full passport is a bottle from each of the 20 wineries. Go to idahostatesman.com/ contests or contact the wine commission at idahowines.org.

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Offering a LOT of help to children. There are too many children left behind, but fortunately there are folks such as those at Olive Crest — a West Coast organization founded in 1973 — who provide a helping hand to Puget Sound foster children. On Oct 12, LOT No. 3 in Bellevue plays host to Olive Crest’s 10th annual Grape Expectations Wine Procurement

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W I N E C O U N T RY Party. That night, each guest brings a donation of outstanding Northwest wine to be auctioned at Olive Crest’s 2012 One Life at a Time Gala at the Westin Bellevue. Each donation valued at $100 or more is parlayed into a complimentary glass of wine, hors d’oeuvres and free parking. The previous nine years raised nearly $500,000. Go to olivecrest.org/pnw to get your form.

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King Cab. Most of us won’t turn down a glass of great Cabernet Sauvignon. After all, it’s the wine of kings. Here’s a chance to taste and judge a bunch of Cabs side-by-side. On Oct. 26, Bell Harbor on Seattle’s waterfront — the home of several Northwest wine events — will stage the third annual Cabernet Classic. Last year’s event gathered more than 100 Cabs and Cab-based blends from 35 Washington wineries. The three-hour event serves as a fundraiser for Rotary First Harvest, a food bank program. Cost is $50. Go to firstharvest.org.

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Dining above Timberline. Last year marked the return to Mount Hood by one of the Northwest’s most accomplished and wine-minded chefs. Jason Stoller Smith resigned from the Ponzi-owned Dundee Bistro to succeed his mentor, Leif Erickson, as executive chef at Timberline Lodge. Each fall, Stoller Smith begins conducting arguably the most remarkable winemaker dinner series in the Northwest. These meals are not staged in the lodge, but rather the Silcox Hut — under the chairlift on the Palmer Snowfield. The series resumes Oct. 13 and runs once a month through July. These are intimate evenings as the hut seats just 24. Cost is $175. Apparently, there are no hard feelings because Ponzi Vineyards has been featured twice. Start your climb at timberlinelodge.com/winemakers-dinner-series. ı What is your favorite thing to do in Northwest wine country? Send your ideas to edegerman@winepressnw.com. ı Have a Northwest wine item to post on our free online Wine Events calendar? Go to winepressnw.com/events.

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events

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September 24 Taste of the Harvest, Caldwell, Idaho. This College of Idaho event funds scholarships for migrant workers’ children. Call 208-459-5011 or go to collegeofidaho.edu. 24-25 Catch the Crush, Yakima, Prosser, Tri-Cities. Harvest celebrations from Yakima to the Tri-Cities. Call 866-360-6611 or go to wineyakimavalley.org.

October Sept. 30-9 Okanagan Fall Wine Festival, Okanagan Valley, B.C. More than 165 events stretch over 10 days. Call 250-861-6654 or go to thewinefestivals.com. 1-2, 8-9 Lake Chelan Crush, Lake Chelan, Wash. Ten days of a “berry to bottle” fest in the Northwest’s youngest appellation. Go to lakechelanwinevalley.com. 15 Entwine Grand Auction, Walla Walla, Wash. This auction at the Marcus Whitman Hotel supports arts, wine and education. Go to wwcc.edu/entwine 22 Food, Wine & Wishes, Portland. Portland Art Museum assists Make-A-Wish Foundation of Oregon and Clark County. Call 503-292-2280 or go to orwish.org.

November 4 Walla Walla Wine Auction, Walla Walla, Wash. This is the 30th annual fundraiser for Planned Parenthood of Walla Walla. Go to plannedparenthood.org/ppgwni 4-5 Tri-Cities Wine Festival, Kennewick, Wash. One of the Northwest’s largest wine festivals is at Three Rivers Convention Center. Go to tricitieswinefestival.com. 5 Northwest Wine & Food Festival, Portland. This sixth annual event moves to the Doubletree Lloyd Center. Go to nwwinefestival.com. 5 Gusto! Everett, Wash. More than 30 wineries and 10 restaurants raise funds at Comcast Arena for Everett Community College. Go to everettcc.edu/gusto. 10-13 Whistler’s Cornucopia, Whistler, B.C. Whistler’s 15th annual extravaganza of Northwest wine and cuisine. Go to whistlercornucopia.com. 11 Epicurean Delight, Spokane, Wash. This 30th annual gala benefits the Inland Northwest Blood Center. Call 509-232-4567 or go to epicureandelight.org. 11-12 ¡Salud! Dundee and Portland. This annual Pinot Noir auction benefits Oregon’s vineyard workers. Call 503-681-1850 or go to saludauction.org. 11-12 Taste of Tulalip, Tulalip, Wash. More than 60 Washington wineries pour at this award-winning young event at Tulalip Resort Casino. Go to tulalipresort.com. 12-13 Passport Wine Tour, Olympic Peninsula, Wash. The Olympic Peninsula Wineries’ annual fall wine-touring event. Go to olympicpeninsulawineries.org. 18-20 Holiday Wine Festival, Spokane, Wash. A weekend of wine, art and food annually staged the weekend before Thanksgiving. Go to spokanewineries.net. 25-27 Thanksgiving in Wine Country, Yakima Valley, Wash. Tour Washington’s oldest wine region. Visit wineyakimavalley.org. 25-27 Wine Country Thanksgiving, Willamette Valley, Ore. More than 150 wineries of the Willamette Valley celebrate the holidays. Go to willamettewines.com. 25-27 Lake Chelan Fall Barrel Tasting, Lake Chelan, Wash. Get a peek at wines from the state’s 11th American Viticultural Area. Go to cometothelake.com. 25-27 Idaho After Thanksgiving Barrel Tasting, Caldwell, Idaho. More than a dozen Snake River Valley wineries open up following the holiday. Go to idahowines.org. 26 Apple Cup at Wine World, Seattle. Wineries with ties to the University of Washington or Washington State University pour before or during the football game, depending kickoff. Tickets cost $25. Go to wineworldwarehouse.com.

December 2-4 Holiday Barrel Tasting, Walla Walla, Wash. Enjoy a weekend visiting the wineries of the Walla Walla Valley. Go to wallawallawine.com or call 509-526-3117. 2-4 St. Nicholas Day Open House, Woodinville, Wash. Woodinville wineries open their doors for this passport-style event. Go to woodinvillewinecountry.com. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M

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NORTHWEST WINE

Bag-in-a-box wines perfect for Bargain Bob Editor’s note: Bob Woehler, the dean of Northwest wine writers, passed away Aug. 24. This is his final “Bargain Bob” column. BY “BARGAIN BOB” WOEHLER

Old Bargain Bob finds himself boxed in this time, surrounded by boxes after boxes of wine. Bag-in-a-box wine was developed in Australia in 1969. The early efforts were rather crude, with a tough plastic bag filled with wine, sealed shut and put in a box. To get to the wine, you had to cut a corner in the box, snip off the corner of the plastic, let the wine pour out freestyle, and then try to seal it up again with a clamp. This soon gave way to the modern-day bag in the box that has its own spigot. Bag-in-a-box wines are generally low-priced wines, but high-quality versions can be found, especially in the Pacific Northwest. The spigot allows no air into the bag, so the wine tends to not spoil. Generally, a true varietal characteristic comes across in the glass. Box wines come in 3-liter containers, which are the equivalent of four regular bottles or 4-liter boxes, which equal six regular bottles. Many supermarkets carry a nice variety of box

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wines. Here are a few to try when you have a lot of folks over for pizza or chicken. All of these wines come out to between $4.50 and $5.70 a bottle. Brown Box Merlot, $17 for 3 liters: Made by Silver Lake Winery in Woodinville, this has won praise in blind tastings. Badger Mountain Pure Red and Pure White, $20 for 3 liters: Both are organic with no sulfites added. The red offers chocolate and red currant aromas and flavors, while the white shows off blood orange and Crenshaw melon notes. Washington Hills Washington Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay and Merlot, $18 for 3 liters: Zesty citrus shows off the Pinot Grigio; nec-

tarines and lime highlight the Chardonnay, and plums and black cherries define the Merlot. Tefft Cellars Chardonnay, $29 for 4 liters: A bit off-dry, this shows off peaches and citrus and would satisfy those looking for a cocktail wine or something to sip on while making dinner. Black Box 2009 Riesling, $18 for 3 liters: Made in California from Washington grapes, this has nice sweetness and flavors that include honey and tangerines.

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NORTHWEST WINE

Head to B.C. islands, coast with Schreiner’s latest book BY KEN ROBERTSON

John Schreiner is a nice, whitehaired, precise and soft-spoken man whose personality shines through in his writing. When he John Schreiner’s BC talks, he’s interCoastal Wine Tour esting and Guide, $19.95 CDN, entertainWhitecap Books, ing and his Copyright 2011 writing voice echoes that. This latest book complements his Okanagan Wine Tour Guide, which he has written three editions of since 2007. And, as an enthusiastic consumer of wines from the Victoria area and the Gulf Islands since 2006, I have to say, John, it was about time. Yes, there are many more wineries in the Okanagan, where the wines tend to be more polished, more diverse and often of surprising quality. But the Coastal areas have their own story to tell, and Schreiner, as the dean of B.C. wine writers, is the perfect person to tell it. He appropriately starts out by describing the history of wine on Canada’s West Coast and then launches into the individual stories behind each winery. As someone who’s followed Washington wineries since I moved to the state in 1976 — when there were

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only six bonded wineries — I found his stories about each both interesting and more than a little familiar, for they sound much like Washington state’s struggle for recognition 30 and more years ago. For the coastal wineries, as Schreiner notes, mostly have “remarkably low profiles.” Indeed, despite more than 30 years of sipping wines from Washington, Oregon, Idaho and B.C.’s Okanagan, I have to admit I didn’t taste my first Vancouver Island and Gulf Island wines until 2006. Since then, I’ve tried to make up for that by regular trips to Victoria. And in all my future visits, John’s new book (or subsequent editions) will accompany me. Anyone who wants to pretend to know and understand Northwest wines can no longer afford to ignore the Coastal B.C. wineries. From Auxerrois to Zweigelt, John has done an excellent job of outlining the story to date. His new book is well worth the price.

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NORTHWEST WINE

Nom de vine: Stories behind wine names

All that glitters is gold at B.C.’s Moon Curser Vancouver, B.C.,-based Brandever Strategies, the Tolleys and HadleyBeauregard researched the history of the border town to find a name that better reflected the winery’s terroir.

BY JON BAUER

With recent turmoil in world financial markets, everybody from Glenn Beck to your Uncle Mike has told you to buy gold. But you’d rather lay in a supply of Tempranillo or Viognier. You can do both now. All that glitters on the bottles of three wines by Osoyoos, B.C., winemaker Moon Curser Vineyards is indeed gold, all 22 karats. You won’t miss it on the wine shop shelf. Silhouettes of forest creatures lurk in the night against a band of gold on the winery’s bottles of Tempranillo, Viognier and Dead of Night red blend. But the gold isn’t there as an investment strategy. It’s all part of the name behind the winery and the story that unfolds on the label. Beata Tolley and her husband Chris left initial careers — she as a chartered accountant, he as a software engineer — to launch their winery, which included a year of study for both in viticulture and oenology at Lincoln University in New Zealand. After scouting locations in British Columbia, the couple settled on the Okanagan Valley. “We wanted to do reds, and Osoyoos seemed the best spot in the valley” Beata Tolley said. In 2005, the couple, wanting to work

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with less frequently used varietals, planted six acres of Tempranillo, Tannat, Carmenere, Viognier, Roussanne and Marsanne on the Osoyoos East Bench and made arrangements with Martin Plut’s nearby vineyard for Chardonnay and other grapes. And Twisted Tree Vineyards was on its way to its first vintage. Twisted Tree? “At the risk of sounding naïve, we didn’t give much attention to the name,” Tolley said. “Our focus was on the wine, and that remains our focus.” But it didn’t take long to see that the name Twisted Tree didn’t say much about the winery or the wine and was prone to confusion with a host of other wines and products. “There was enough twisting going on,” she said. Working with wine marketing specialist Bernie Hadley-Beauregard of

The 1858 Fraser Canyon Gold Rush provided a colorful story of gold prospectors as well as night-owl smugglers who, looking to escape the attention and taxes of border agents, would rather curse the moon than be exposed by its light. Hadley-Beauregard took the name and story to Maryland-based visual artist and animator Andrea Dezsö, who used her paper-cut silhouette work to illustrate a tale of animal-like smugglers traveling under cover of night. The illustration is rich, with dark images of pine forest and lake with a team of animals and humanlike beasts: a fox with a bag of gold, a donkey with a shovel over its shoulder, a bear cub leading a pack mule and an owl carrying a lantern to light the menagerie’s way. The design wraps 360 degrees seamlessly around the bottle. Several varieties display the artwork on paper labels, but the labels for the Viognier, Tempranillo and the Dead of Night (a Tannat and Syrah blend), feature the designs silkscreened onto each bottle using 22-karat gold. It’s not a cheap bottle to produce, Tolley admitted, “but we just had to.” The ambiguity of the creatures was intentional, Dezsö said, to add to the mischief done at night, but also to allow those enjoying the wine to craft their own stories. Are they humans disguised behind animal masks, or animals taking human shape to protect their treasure? It’s a bottle that begs to be held and turned in the hand as one sits in a candle-lit dining room enjoying the wine. “The more fingerprints on a bottle,” Hadley-Beauregard said, “the happier we are.” Moon Curser Vineyards: www.mooncurser.com Andrea Dezsö: andreadeszo.com W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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FIND A WINE

Find a wine

Looking for a good bottle of wine? Use our handy flowchart to find a wine rated “Outstanding!” in our weekly Fresh Press online newsletter

START HERE

Seven of Hearts 2010 Rosé of Pinot Noir

Food

Pink Serving with food or in a hot tub?

White

JoieFarm 2010 Re-Think Pink

Red, white or pink?

b t tu o H

Meal or cocktail?

l ktai c o C

rt se s De

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Chateau Ste. Michelle 2010 Sauvignon Blanc

Mai n co urse

No

Yes

Main course or dessert?

Koenig Cellars 2009 Riesling Ice Wine

Martin-Scott 2010 Viognier

Me al

Dry Falls Cellars 2009 Semillon Traditionelle

Hard to find?


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FIND A WINE

Weekend or weekday?

Red

We ek en d

day Week

Milbrandt Vineyards 2008 Traditions Merlot

Pendulum 2007 Red Wine No

Dining out?

Inlaw s

Yes

Pizz a

Dusted Valley Vintners 2008 Tall Tales Syrah

In-laws or pizza night?

e at D

Date or spouse? Who’s buying?

law -inher Fat

Southard Winery 2008 Whipping Boy Cabernet Sauvignon

Spouse

Me

Ash Hollow 2007 Headless Red s Ye

Is he/she angry with you?

No

Ye s

No

Own Apple stock?

Eliseo Silva 2008 Malbec, $14

Northstar 2007 Merlot, $50

Chateau Faire Le Pont 2007 Tre Amore

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Carlton The wine capital of Oregon WRITER ANDY PERDUE PHOTOGRAPHER JACKIE JOHNSTON

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s recently as two decades ago, Carlton, Ore., was not much more than a tiny dot on a map, an afterthought, a small town in Yamhill County that was a quaint slice of Americana because of its remote location. An hour from Portland, it was a cultural backwater, a dying town with shuttered storefronts that was known as “the S-curve to nowhere.” Today — thanks to wine — Carlton is a lively destination with tasting rooms, restaurants, B&Bs and a diversity of businesses. In a short period of time, it has transformed itself into the Wine Capital of Oregon. Kathie Oriet, mayor of Carlton since 2002, has watched the transformation since she arrived in the 1970s. “Back then, it was a wonderful place to raise kids, a safe place,” she said. But its future seemed in doubt.

Stainless steel wine tanks are stored outside of The Carlton Winemakers Studio until they are needed come harvest time.

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“There were a lot of empty storefronts.” Carlton has been an incorporated city for more than a century. It’s been a logging community and has a long history in agriculture, particularly seed crops, berries, corn and wheat. And as the wine industry began to develop around it in the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, Carlton was mostly untouched, even as vineyards were planted in the surrounding hills. Then, Ken Wright came to town. Wright, arguably Oregon’s most celebrated winemaker, came to prominence when he moved to Oregon from California in 1986 and launched Panther Creek Cellars in McMinnville. Almost instantly, Wright began selling out his wines on futures. Had he not taken on an investor and gotten into a legal battle that ultimately forced him to sell Panther Creek in 1994, he might never have moved to Carlton. Just before harvest in ’94, Wright was without a place to make wine. He heard about a leather glove factory in Carlton that was going out of business, so he took over the building on Main Street and launched Ken Wright Cellars. “What attracted us to Carlton was it was far enough away from Highway 99W to provide a slower pace of life,” he said. “It felt far more rural than Dundee or McMinnville. It hadn’t been spoiled by franchises, which has happened to so many communities.” About the same time, Jay McDonald arrived from New


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York City. He had visited in 1991 and was looking for a lifestyle change. “I’d had enough of New York,” he said. He’d long enjoyed wine as a hobby and was enraptured with the small towns of the northern Willamette Valley. He spent three weeks in late 1994, looking around Yamhill County before settling in Carlton. “Everyone in the wine industry said, ‘You’re making a big mistake — you need to be on 99,’ ” he said. “But 99 is a potty stop on the way to the coast or the casino. This is a destination.” McDonald bought the old bank building on Main Street and opened The Tasting Room in 1995, a wine shop that focused on such hard-to-find Oregon classics as Ken Wright Cellars, Domaine Drouhin Oregon and Bergström. In 1998, he created his own label, called EIEIO. “I got really drunk, and a bunch of us were having a good time,” he said with a laugh. They thought naming it after McDonald — or at least the “old MacDonald” nursery rhyme — was funny. And when they sobered up the next morning, it still sounded like a good idea. EIEIO started as a negoçiant label, with McDonald purchasing wine from various producers and blending it. By 2002, he was ready to start making his own wine and secured grapes from many top vineyards in the northern Willamette Valley. For the first few years, The Tasting Room and Ken

Wright Cellars were the only wine businesses in town, and visitors happening through couldn’t count on a meal that amounted to much more than a bag of chips at the small grocery store. But then something happened to Carlton, not unlike what has occurred in Walla Walla, where early wineries such as Leonetti, Woodward Canyon and L’Ecole drew others like a magnet. In 1995, Dave Grooters sold his software company in Pennsylvania to come to Oregon wine country, nudged by longtime Army buddy Nick Peirano — owner of famed Nick’s Italian Café in McMinnville. “He introduced me to the winemakers and their great Pinot Noir,” Grooters said. He started as a volunteer at Ken Wright Cellars, then managed Canary Hill Vineyard for two years. He continued to work for Wright and created his own small label with the 2001 vintage. In 2003, he planted a vineyard, and in 2007, he struck out on his own, opening Carlton Cellars in an old warehouse not far from Wright’s place in Carlton. For three years, Raptor Ridge Winery shared his facility, and today he rents space to J Albin, Barking Frog, Ghost Hill, Youngberg Hill and Angel Vine, all small producers. Not far away on the edge of town, Gino Cuneo, who had been making wine elsewhere in Yamhill County, built a beautiful, Tuscan-themed winery. Now under different ownership, it’s called Cana’s Feast Winery. Next door, winemaker Eric Hamacher opened Carlton Winemakers

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Winemaker Ken Wright

Studio in 2002, now home Studio, which includes Andrew Rich Vintner, Trout Lily Ranch and Lazy River Vineyard. Not long after, fine dining came to Carlton in the form of Cuvée. Owned by Frenchman Gilbert Henry, Cuvée’s haute cuisine was an anomaly on Main Street when it opened more than a half-decade ago. But it, too, drew others, and now such restaurants as The Horse Radish, Cielo Blu and The Filling Station share Main Street with Cuvée, each offering a different niche. In 2005, the Yamhill-Carlton American Viticulture Area was approved by the federal government. It was named for the two towns in the region, though ironically, the appellation is a horseshoe shape that surrounds but does not include Carlton or Yamhill. It is based on elevation, and the cities are below 300 feet. But it helped continue to establish Carlton as a wine destination. Soon, more wineries were flooding in, wanting to take advantage of the critical mass

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Gilbert Henry, Cuvée owner

that was forming in the town of 2,000. Even wineries from Southern Oregon began opening tasting rooms, including Troon Vineyards, Cliff Creek Cellars and Folin Cellars. “It was a mystery to me why they were opening up their tasting rooms on Main Street in Carlton when they’re making their wine in the Umpqua and Rogue,” Grooters said. “But they like it here, and it’s added another dimension of wines that people can come and get, so it’s not just Pinot.” Barking Frog and Angel Vine add an even more interesting dimension, as most of their grapes come from vineyards in Washington. Angel Vine focuses on Zinfandel, while Barking Frog produces Sangiovese, Syrah and Cabernet Franc (as well as Oregon Pinot Noir). In all, about two dozen tasting rooms now inhabit Carlton. It certainly isn’t at Woodinville levels — the Seattle suburb now boasts about 80 wineries and tasting rooms — and that’s just fine with everyone in town. “We’ve tried to be a benefit to

Carlton in general,” Grooters said. “Not just for the tourist trade, but all the way around the city. For the most part, the town likes the presence of the wineries. We’re really careful about the alcohol and the drinking and all those negative sides of it. We try and keep very clean in terms of our operations at the winery and in the vineyards. So we’ve been good neighbors.” Nearly everybody points to Wright as the genesis of Carlton’s rebirth, and not just because of his star power. Several years ago, he and his wife, Karen, purchased several buildings in downtown Carlton. They’ve sold a couple, and they own others with business partners. This has given the Wrights the ability to control growth and recruit the kinds of businesses that will attract quality tourism. They don’t want every storefront to be a winery, so they have brought in such businesses as Honest Chocolates, Republic of Jam and Karen Brock Studio. “It’s important,” Wright said. “For people to want to come to Carlton and stay and hang out,

it needs diversity. It’s important to have businesses compatible with the wine industry. We are new partners in the community with wagon train families and many others who have given back and built our community over many years.” “It’s a great little town,” Mayor Oriet said. “It’s our slogan, and it fits us well. Now, we have basically no empty storefronts. It truly has blossomed. It’s really evolved quite a bit in the past 20 years, and tourism is mostly focused on wine.” Carlton is a destination — you don’t just happen upon the town. Ample parking makes it easy to go from winery to winery. And the slower, happier pace of life is enticing to travelers and locals alike. Thanks to the wine industry, Carlton has come back from the brink and now thrives as the Wine Capital of Oregon. ı AN D Y PE R D U E is editor-in-chief of

Wine Press Northwest. JACKIE JOHNSTON , a freelance pho-

tojournalist, is a regular contributor and the page designer for Wine Press Northwest. Her website is at WineCountryPhotos.com

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Touring Carlton BY ERIC DEGERMAN PHOTOS BY JACKIE JOHNSTON

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s there a better example of wine country in the Pacific Northwest than Oregon’s tiny town of Carlton? Seven years ago, Alsace-born chef Gilbert Henry and his wife sold their downtown Portland restaurant to create fine dining on Main Street within two blocks of a grain silo emblazoned by the town’s logo. Just around the corner, laughing children splash about in the community pool as their parents watch from under the shade of trees in Upper Park. “People have asked me about coming to Port Townsend (Wash.) and Seaside (Ore.), but we’ve got a house here that’s half a mile from the restaurant,” Henry said. “I walk to work and know everybody and say ‘Hi’ to everybody. And there is some new blood in town now, which is helping.” Famed Pinot Noir producer Scott Paul Wines shares its block with that silo. And kittycorner on Main Street is The Tasting Room, a retail bottle shop that doubles as Jay McDonald’s storefront for EIEIO & Co. The most expensive bottles are displayed in a walk-in safe because 100 years before, this was Carlton Savings Bank. There’s plenty invested in this town, and everyone seems to be in it for the long haul. Locomotives stopped in Carlton for several decades on runs between Portland and the Oregon Coast — thanks to the initial efforts of Wilson Carl. The train depot was shuttered for decades until famed winemaker Ken Wright purchased the building. Two years later, in 2003, he’d transformed it into a public tasting center for his new Tyrus Evan label, his worldrenowned Pinot Noirs and some neighboring wineries.

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carlton Down the block are City Hall and the police station, not that there seems to be a need for peacekeepers in Carlton. All that is within eyesight of Main Street, which doubles for three blocks as Highway 47, the two-lane road that slowly makes its way through Carlton without need for a traffic signal. Venture off Main Street one block to the north, south, east or west and there’s more in store. The trip calls for a thoughtcleansing drive out in the country, which urban dwellers may well view as therapeutic. And upon arrival, there’s the luxury of leaving the key fob for your vehicle next to your pillow for the weekend. That’s because Main Street and Carlton, population 2,015, can provide nearly all the necessities — delicious food, wines crafted by some of the Northwest’s biggest talents, lodging, live music and even a local watering hole. “Things have worked out so incredibly well for me,” said Julie Davis, who last year took over and invigorated The Horse Radish, a restaurant, cheese shop and wine bar. “I get to work with my family and in a town like this where local businesses are so supportive of each other. And it’s been fun to get to know the people that work the tasting rooms, make the connections and make friends. I can tell you the smiles and laughter are genuine.” One doesn’t need to enjoy wine to appreciate Carlton, though. There is a chocolatier, a handful of spots providing freshbrewed coffee, a maker of artisan jam and shops devoted to local artists. All are interspersed among the tasting rooms of Main Street and along the side streets. To get a quick feel for the pulse of Carlton, go the corner

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Jay McDonald keeps the most expensive bottles at The Tasting Room in an old bank vault.

of Kutch and Main. That’s where winemakers, growers and wine tourists swing into The Filling Station Deli and Common Grounds Espresso for their breakfast and/or coffee. Remember to bring a thirst for adventure. The closest thing to a franchise in Carlton might be the John L. Scott real estate office.

Wineries Four of Oregon’s top winemakers – Joe Dobbes, Laurent Montalieu, Lynn Penner-Ash and Ken Wright – have a presence here, which explains why a growing number of wineries from Southern Oregon joined the scene with tasting rooms in Carlton. More than a dozen wineries and tasting rooms are clustered within a block north or south of Main Street and along a fourblock stretch of Highway 47, which is slowed to 20 mph. Those who really want to stretch their legs can do so by walking five blocks north of

Main Street to visit Cana’s Feast Winery and The Carlton Winemakers Studio. Alexana Winery Texan cardiologist Madaiah Revana owns two wineries – one for Bordeaux varieties in Napa Valley and this house for Pinot Noir in the Willamette Valley. Lynn Penner-Ash crafts these stylish wines, and while a retail space and winery will open in the Dundee Hills, management said it has no plans to close this tasting salon, which pours daily. 116 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, alexanawinery.com. Barking Frog Winery Ron Helbig interned with the skilled Laurent Montalieu. In 2005, Helbig went off on his own and quickly adopted glass corks. The name is, in part, a reference to his legal battle with a California game warden after gigging for frogs. The awardwinning wines include Pinot Noir from the Willamette Valley

and warm-climate reds from Eastern Washington. The Syrah dessert wine is remarkable, and the tasting room sits below the balcony of the long-forgotten movie theater. 128 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, barkingfrogwinery.com Cana’s Feast Winery There’s an early sense of Tuscany, starting with the bocce ball court and continuing with Patrick Taylor’s wines. His sources for Italian and Bordeaux varieties include famed Ciel du Cheval Vineyard on Red Mountain in Washington, but he also makes Pinot Noir from acclaimed Meredith Mitchell Vineyard in nearby McMinnville. Among the products is a fascinating expression of Chinato, a dessert-style vermouth made with Nebbiolo off Coyote Canyon Vineyard in Washington’s Horse Heaven Hills. 750 W. Lincoln St., Carlton, OR, 97111, canasfeastwinery.com

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carlton Carlton Cellars Dave Grooters and Nick Peirano served in the Army together. Grooters made his fortune in the software industry, while Peirano helped bring Oregon fame at Nick’s Italian Café in McMinnville. They remained friends, and Grooters went from vineyard manager for Ken Wright to planting his own vines. In 2007, he launched Carlton Cellars. This also serves as the tasting room for four other wineries — Angel Vine, J Albin, Ghost Hill and Youngberg Hill. An expansive lawn and patio make Carlton Cellars a prime spot for a picnic, too. 130 W. Monroe St., Carlton, OR, 97111, carltoncellars.com Cliff Creek Cellars The Garvin family has farmed the Rogue Valley for more than a century, and although wine grapes are a relatively new crop for them, they wisely hired Joe Dobbes to be their winemaker from the start. They use only estate fruit, specializing in Bordeaux and Rhône varieties. 258 N. Kutch St., Carlton, OR, 97111, cliffcreek.com.

Folin Cellars Here’s another satellite tasting room for a Southern Oregon winery. The wines are grown and made near Medford, and the focus is on Petite Sirah, Syrah, Tempranillo and Viognier. They also have adopted glass cork as their closure. 118 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, folincellars.com Mouvance Winery Owner/winemaker Lonnie Krawl is based in Boise, Idaho, but he began making wine in 2008 from his estate Julon Vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills with guidance from his friends at Coeur de Terre Vineyards. 258 North Kutch Street, Suite A, Carlton, OR, 97111, mouvancewinery.com. Scott Paul Wines In a former life, folks on the East Coast knew him as the radio disc jockey Shadow Stevens. That life introduced Scott Wright to the world of wine. When he and his wife Martha partnered with Kettle Chips founder Cameron Healy in 2003, they invested heavily in Carlton. They bought two historic buildings. One used to be a creamery and the other was

Winemaker Joe Dobbes

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Cana’s Feast Winery

home to Madsen Grain Co. In addition to making Oregon Pinot Noir, they also import wines from Burgundy. 128 S. Pine St., Carlton, OR, 97111, scottpaul.com. Seven of Hearts Byron Dooley gave up a software career in California for the life of one who makes acclaimed Pinot Noir from his own Luminous Hills Vineyard in the Willamette Valley. Since 2008, he’s shared the tasting room with a branch of his wife’s Honest Chocolates business. 217 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, sevenofheartswine.com. TerraVina Wines The folks at Cuvée Restaurant lease space next door to the Dingers to use for tasting, which is called “The LULU Room.” Their estate Dalla Terra Vineyard is in the Chehalem Mountains. 214 B W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, terravinawines.com. Troon Vineyard In Carlton, this Grants Pass winery showcases its Zinfandel and many of the other 20 varieties grown on its estate. A courtyard beyond the tasting room plays host to a summer

concert series ranging from bluegrass to jazz to the young reggae band Sol Seed. 250 N. Kutch St., Carlton, OR, 97111, troonvineyard.com WildAire Cellars A bottling from renowned Shea Vineyard highlights Matt Driscoll’s lineup of small-lot Pinot Noir. His wines are made at Illahe Vineyards, Wine Press Northwest’s 2011 Oregon Winery to Watch. 128 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, wildairecellars.com J. Wrigley Vineyards/ Noble Pig Two families with new plantings in McMinnville joined forces and built a diminutive “tasting cottage” for their young, Pinot Noir-focused wineries. 407 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, wrigleywines.com, noblepigwine.com. Ken Wright Cellars Perhaps no winemaker is more passionate in the pursuit of Pinot Noir than our 2005 Pacific Northwest Winery of the Year. And Ken Wright doesn’t seem to be slowing down, creating 10 vineyard-designate wines from the 2010 vintage – the

Cheese plate at The Horse Radish

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carlton 25th of his career. The winery is open to the public only during the weekends of Thanksgiving and Memorial Day, but KWC wines are poured at the Tyrus Evan Tasting Room, which is open seven days a week. 236 N Kutch St.,Carlton, OR 97111, kenwrightcellars.com. Tyrus Evan What started as an experiment in 2003 has evolved into an acclaimed project named for Cody Tyrus Wright and Carson Evan Wright – sons of Ken Wright. The focus here is Bordeaux and Rhône varieties from storied vineyards in Oregon and Washington. Meanwhile, Cody Wright has forged out on his own with the Purple Hands label. 120 N Pine St, Carlton, OR 97111, tyrusevanwine.com The Carlton Winemakers Studio Stylish and LEED-certified, CWS ranks among the most fascinating wine operations in the Northwest, serving as a coop, incubator and model for others since 2002. It was launched by Eric Hamacher – husband of Luisa Ponzi – and now managed by Ellen Brittan.

She and her husband, Robert Brittan, recently moved to the Willamette Valley following his storied career at Stag’s Leap Winery in Napa Valley. He and Hamacher make their own wines and share space with the likes of Andrew Rich, a renter here from the start. Customers are charged by the ton of fruit they bring in to process, and there are predetermined tonnage limits. Alumni include Penner-Ash, Scott Paul and Soter. While there are more than a dozen labels, no more than eight are poured in the tasting gallery. Several, including Dukes and Trout Lily, are made by rising star Kelly Kidneigh. Outside seating comes with tableside service. It’s an experience not to be missed. 801 N. Scott St., Carlton, OR, 97111, winemakersstudio.com.

Restaurants Cuvée Little did Gilbert Henry know back in the summer of 2004 that he didn’t pick Carlton. Rather, Carlton picked him. “We did some market research, and Ken Wright was the first person my wife talked to,” Henry

recalled. “It turns out he sent some spies out to my restaurant (Winterborne) in Portland. One of them came in and said, ‘We want to make sure about you. And yep, your food is good.’ ” Now, when Wright brings guests to Carlton, he takes them to Cuvée. The theme is quite French, incorporating seafood, nearby ingredients and local wines. He’s only open for dinner and just Wednesday through Saturday. It’s a schedule that allows him to ride his bike, sometimes competitively, along country roads and vineyards. 214 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, cuveedining.com. The Horse Radish Julie Davis and her family transformed it into a hub of food, wine and fun soon after taking it over April 1, 2010. “It was a good April Fools joke, and then the next day was my birthday,” Davis said with a chuckle. “I just turned 30, so it was my 30th birthday present to myself!” Davis moved from Bend, but as a Linfield College grad, she knew the area and quickly began recruiting her family. Her husband, Sean, assistant winemaker at David Hill in

Forest Grove, is one of the few family members not involved in The Horse Radish. Her brother, Ryan, has taken over the Northwest-centric wine list, runs the wine shop and features a dozen wines by the glass, which are changed out each Friday. Their mother, Jennifer, lords over the West Coast cheese case and makes a mean Marionberry pie. And sister Andie’s sandwich with Carlton Farms smoked ham, Swiss cheese and fig jam ranks among the top lunches to be had in Northwest wine country. There’s patio seating in the back, and on the weekend nights, live bands from Portland and Salem bring a professional sound. “They tell me they love playing out here because it’s more laid back and because people are actually listening to their music,” Davis said. “In Portland, these bands might end up as just background noise because the audience talks right over the music.” Spend a weekend in Carlton and find yourself hitting the HR more than once. 211 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, thehorseradish.com.

Ron Helbig, Barking Frog Winery

Sol Seed plays at The Horse Radish

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Breakfast at The Filling Station Deli

Cielo Blu Italian Grill The historic brick walls give this restaurant a feel as if it has been open for decades, but the Cravens launched it in 2007. Hearty fare, large portions, big tables and a family atmosphere make this a pleasant alternative to the big Italian chains you’d find near the city shopping mall. Local wines are displayed. Pasta dishes feature approachable sauces, and lovers of eggplant or veal will have choices. Adding to the enjoyment is half of the tables offer a view into the kitchen, giving a sense of the hustle and bustle of servers and cooks. 119 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, cieloblurestaurant.com The Filling Station Deli Those who don’t stay at a B&B can still find a delicious way to start your day with breakfast, thanks to Ken Meeks and Bobbi Hartwell’s retrofit of a gas station five years ago. They proudly serve Portland-based Stumptown coffee. They offer wifi and seating inside or on the deck to enjoy your fare spread across tabletops over wine barrels. In the morning, consider their Breakfast Burrito or Bagel & Lox. Their assortment of 36

Wines for sale at The Tasting Room

made-to-order sandwiches – especially the Highway 47 and the Belly Dancer — will tempt you to return for a sit-down lunch inside or take-out for picnics. Local wine also is available for purchase. Open six days a week 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Closed on Wednesday. 305 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, fillingstationdeli.com. The Pied Piper Pub It’s Carlton’s version of Lumpy’s Tavern in nearby Dundee, the spot where locals go to shoot pool, watch football on Sundays and get away from the touristas. Winemakers call ahead for the tasty, made-toorder burgers during crush. It’s cash only, which explains the ATM near the front door. 325 Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111, 503-852-5560.

Coffee Common Grounds Espresso This cute drive-through, about the size of a Tuff Shed, serves up a remarkable Mexican mocha that’s nice on the spice and light on the sweet. They pride themselves on using beans roasted daily by Longbottom Coffee and Tea in

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Hillsboro, Ore., which supports certified free trade. Those who walk up and order have the opportunity to sit outside under an umbrella. It shares a parking lot with The Filling Station Deli. 305 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111. Carlton Coffee Co. Located inside the building that houses Cielo Blu, this is not a particularly convenient or easily spotted coffee outpost. And even though Italian restaurant’s dinner guests can see the stand for this small operation, those craving a doppio with dessert will go disappointed. Carlton Coffee Co., shuts down the stand at 3 p.m. 119 W. Main St., Carlton, OR, 97111.

Wine shops The Tasting Room The Tasting Room in Carlton offers hard-to-find labels and collectible Pinot Noir, including owner Jay McDonald’s EIEIO brand. There are special instore pourings by visiting wineries, and he owns the domain pinot-noir.com.

Activities Walk in the Park Perhaps the best time to get the full Carlton experience is during the weekend of Walk in the Park. The town’s Wennerberg Park comes alive as wineries, restaurants, artists and musicians – highlighted by the eclectic March Fourth Marching Band — gather for a festival that raises money for community groups and civic programs. For more information, go to carltonswalkinthepark.com. Honest Chocolates Honest Chocolates features delectable goodies, and Dana Dooley sells them for less than one might expect for handmade chocolate, which are made on the premises. This is one of three retail locations, but she shares this storefront with her husband Byron, owner/winemaker for Seven of Hearts/Luminous Hills Winery. 217 W. Main St., Carlton, OR 97111, honestchocolates.com. Republic of Jam It would seem that wine lovers and teetotalers could reach a bi-partisan agreement

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Corkscrew collection at The Carlton Inn

on one topic – a love of jams and preserves. Republic of Jam and its lip-smacking work with more than a dozen different fruits from local growers will satisfy both camps. 211 W. Main St., Carlton, OR 97111, republicofjam.com Karen Brock Studios There are two commercial art galleries on Main Street -Karen Brock Studios and Melton Gallery & Studio. Brock uses apparel as her canvas by purchasing used or discarded fabrics then ships those items and her patterns to Southeast Asia, where she works closely with the same family of textile workers. Find her new items through her Facebook page. Violet Rose One of Carlton’s youngest businesses is Violet Rose, a gift shop owned by twin sisters who carry candles, jewelry and other local art. Find them on Facebook.

Lodging Maybe the lone missing ingredient in downtown Carlton is hotel accommodations, and there’s no sign of any coming

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Bottles of beer from Carlton’s Fire Mountain Brewery can be found at local restaurants.

down the road because of the aging water system. That poses a bit of an obstacle for Yanks reluctant to stay at a boutique inn or bed & breakfast. Those who appreciate the pampered attention wine-country innkeepers provide will want to stay downtown to drink in what Carlton has to offer without worrying about driving. Carlton Lofts Stay in the Carlton Lofts and you may have some weekend nighttime entertainment because the rooms are on the second floor overlooking the sidewalks of Main Street. These are three well-appointed studios owned/operated as vacation rentals through Ken Wright Cellars’ website, however the keys are handed over to guests at Tyrus Evan. The Carlton Inn B&B Perhaps the ideal lodging for Carlton’s Walk in the Park is The Carlton Inn B&B, built in 1915 by lumber mill owners. Go to thecarltoninn.com. R.R. Thompson House Three blocks north of Ken Wright Cellars is R.R. Thompson House, a five-suite B&B built in the 1930s. Some

rooms feature a jet tub. Glutenfree breakfasts are available by request. Go to rrthompsonhouse.com. Carlton Cottages The Carlton Cottages, within a stone’s throw of The Carlton Inn, offer a great alternative for caravanning couples. It features a pair of 2,000 square foot bungalows remodeled in 2005 to sleep between two and six people. Learn more at carltoncottages.com. Abbey Road Farm Abbey Road Farm requires a five-minute drive west of Carlton and combines a beautiful pastoral setting, a view of famed Guadalupe Vineyard and comfortable lodging in their signature silo suites. Breakfast brings Judi Stuart’s delectable goat cheese. Go to abbeyroadfarm.com. Brookside Inn Farther south on Abbey Road, Brookside Inn offers a choice of nine suites and features occasional winemaker dinners. For more information go to brooksideinn-oregon.com.

More info Yamhill-Carlton American Viticultural Area This portal serves both towns in the appellation, offering remarkable materials to educate and guide your touring. It has topography maps, wine touring maps, a list of wineries, restaurants, lodging and events. Go to yahmillcarlton.org The city of Carlton’s government site is at ci.carlton.or.us and there’s also carltonbusinessassociation.com. The Yamhill Valley Visitors Association refers to the region as “Oregon’s Stomping Ground” and operates a helpful site at yamhillvalley.org. Willamette Valley Wineries, which gathers up the region’s six sub-appellations, including the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, runs willamettewines.com. The Oregon Wine Board site can help you find worthy stops before and after Carlton at oregonwine.org. ı ERIC DEGERMAN is Wine Press

Northwest’s managing editor. JACKIE JOHNSTON , a freelance pho-

tojournalist, is a regular contributor and the page designer for Wine Press Northwest. Her website is WineCountryPhotos.com

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WINE COUNTRY: WILLAMETTE VALLEY

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The Herbies Wine Press Northwest’s 13th annual Great Northwest Wine Lists Competition BY ERIC DEGERMAN

A RT W O R K B Y K E N S U S Y N S K I

OCEAN CREST RESORT SHARES A TRADITION WITH The Herbfarm as restaurants spotlighting wines made in the great Pacific Northwest better than the rest. Unfortunately, they now have another thing in common — a devasting fire. On June 20, the Moclips, Wash., destination lost its award-winning restaurant and its extensive collection of Native American artifacts. The cause remains unclear, but co-owner Rob Curtright said indications are that it was sparked by an electrical problem within the ceiling in the middle of the restaurant. Fortunately, they only lost about 20 percent of their wine inventory because the bulk of the library was housed off-premise. “We want to continue the wine program,” said Curtright, whose parents founded the resort in 1953. “It was quite successful and brought us a lot of business.” One benefit of the blaze is a more clear view of the Pacific. “We lost a few trees in the fire, so our view will be improved,” Curtright said. “But we will have a brand new building. The original building was part of our house that we’d added to several times over the years, so we’re looking at this an opportunity, and we’re excited about it. It did take us a couple of months to get over the trauma. It was quite emotional for us because of the Northwest American art that can’t be replaced.” Meanwhile, the family placed executive chef Andy Bickar on salary because it didn’t want to lose him. “All the demolition is done, the site is clear and we are

BEST NORTHWEST WINE LIST i

S U N M O U N TA I N L O D G E , W I N T H R O P, WA S H .

PROGRAM:

Don Elsing’s 34-page

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working with the architect on the new building,” Curtright said with optimism. “We hope to start construction in October and be open in April or May. That’s the plan. Everyone has been very supportive.” Their long-standing series of Northwest winemaker dinners probably won’t resume until the fall of 2012. So this year, we’ve given our “The Herbie” to Sun Mountain Lodge, the four-season Methow Valley resort in Winthrop, Wash. Wine director Don Elsing boasts a 5,000-bottle inventory that’s rich with wines from Washington and Oregon as well as a smattering from British Columbia and Idaho. Elsing and executive chef J. Russell Bradshaw continue to stage regular Northwest winemaker dinners, and they’ve received recognition from Wine Press Northwest for Best Washington or Outstanding Northwest wine list for more than a decade. In 2008, we named the competition “The Herbies” -- a tribute to The Herbfarm and its co-owner Ron Zimmerman, a combination in Woodinville, Wash., that won our top award for eight straight years. Their run began four years after a soul-crushing blaze of the original Herbfarm. And so this marks the first time in 12 years that a restaurant other than The Herbfarm or Ocean Crest Resort is given the top award. Each year, we use the Wine Press Northwest/Herbfarm wine list competition to determine candidates for future restaurant profiles. Restaurants among our Match Maker alumni are denoted with an “i .”

book is led by Washington, while Oregon is well-represented for Pinot Noir. British Columbia icon Mission Hill has some library wines, and there’s an Idaho ice wine from Ste. Chapelle. P O L I C I E S : Mountain logo goes next to entries from the growing North Central Washington region.

P R E S S I N G S : There are 98 Washington, 27 Oregon wineries represented, an increase from last year. Three sparkling wine houses in Washington appear here.

604 Patterson Lake Road, Winthrop, WA, 98862, 800-572-0493, sunmountainlodge.com.

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OUTSTANDING NORTHWEST WINE LISTS

nearly two dozen dessert wines from the Northwest. P O L I C I E S : It’s easy to spot a red wine by the glass for less than $10. P R E S S I N G S : Most items on menu can be made gluten-free.

B O N N E V I L L E H O T S P R I N G S R E S O RT, B O N N E V I L L E , WA S H .

20 Basin St., Suite A, Astoria, OR, 97103, 503-325-6777, bridgewaterbistro.com.

P R O G R A M : There’s a blend of local wineries and more pricey Northwest producers. P O L I C I E S : Each Friday, there’s a 1-hour pouring of Columbia Gorge wines joined by Oregon goat cheese, fruits, nuts and breads. P R E S S I N G S : Pacific Crest Dining Room has menu that appeals to spa patrons with healthy alternatives.

1252 E. Cascade Dr., North Bonneville, Wash, 98639, 509-427-9711, bonnevilleresort.com. B L U E A C R E S E A F O O D , S E AT T L E P R O G R A M : Founders of Steelhead Diner in Pike Place, Kevin and Terresa Davis, buy only fish caught in U.S. waters via responsible methods. And the wine list is mostly Washington and Oregon. P O L I C I E S : Many of the wines by the glass are less than $10, rather amazing in downtown Seattle these days. P R E S S I N G S : Nice little finds include Brandborg Gewürz, Browne Family Cab, Corvus Syrah• Petite Sirah, Kyra Chenin Blanc and Treveri bubbles (by the glass).

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C O P P E R L E A F R E S TA U R A N T, S E ATA C

P R O G R A M : The list is brief, but it’s dedicated to the Northwest. Oregon checks in with producers such as Adelsheim, Domaine Drouhin, Lange, Ponzi. Wineries employing sustainable practices show on list with green leaf. P O L I C I E S : Glass pour offerings show more thought than most. P R E S S I N G S : Refreshing to see Sky River — a meadery near the Skykomoish River — represented.

Cedarbrook Lodge, 18525 36th Ave. S., Seattle, WA, 98188, 206-901-9268, cedarbrooklodge.com.

4 2 N D S T R E E T C A F E , S E AV I E W P R O G R A M : Pound-for-pound, Blaine Walker’s quick list ranks among the best as it’s virtually 100 percent from Oregon and Washington. P O L I C I E S : The menu highlights seafood, so the list targets fruit-forward, high-acid wines such as Amity Dry Riesling and Barnard Griffin’s rosé of Sangiovese. P R E S S I N G S : There’s Tempranillo from wineries near the Canadian border (Mount Baker) and the California border (Abacela).

4201 Pacific Way, Seaview, WA, 98644, 360-642-2323, 42ndstreetcafe.com. R N 7 4 , S E AT T L E P R O G R A M : While there’s certainly a world perspective, this new opening in Seattle by international rockstar chef Michael Mina is ramping up its Northwest component. Huge fans of Andrew Will, Cadence, Domaine Drouhin, Gramercy and Scott Paul.

1700 Seventh Ave., Seattle, WA, 98101, 206-659-0737, blueacreseafood.com. B R I D G E WAT E R B I S T R O , ASTORIA P R O G R A M : Tony Kischner has been in the area nearly 30 years, most of them at the Shoalwater on Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula. His focus now is on Oregon, but not just Pinot Noir from the Willamette Valley. He features Southern Oregon and the Columbia Gorge. And there are

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Sun Mountain Lodge in Winthrop, Wash.

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Copperleaf Restaurant

Flashing lights on wallmounted menu boards indicate instant changes to the wine list, so diners can see when the last bottle of Chinook Cab Franc is gone. P R E S S I N G S : Mina, with a growing empire of 19 restaurants across the country, was born in Egpyt but raised in Ellensburg, Wash. POLICIES:

1433 Fourth Ave., Seattle, WA, 98101, 206-456-7474, rn47.com. S I X S E V E N , S E AT T L E

Focus on seafood explains presence of wide-ranging Northwest whites, especially as glass pours, and 20+ Oregon Pinot Noirs. P O L I C I E S : Rising younger wineries Buty, Saviah, alongside fabled producers such as Adelsheim, Leonetti, Quilceda Creek, Ken Wright. P R E S S I N G S : Dining room for historic Edgewater Hotel offers stunning view of Elliott Bay and Olympic Mountains. PROGRAM:

2411 Alaskan Way, Pier 67, Seattle, WA, 98121, 206-269-4575, edgewaterhotel.com.

W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M

C A M P B E L L’ S B I S T R O , C H E L A N

P R O G R A M : No establishment shows more pride in its award than Campbell’s Resort. At the top of the wine list it reads “Wine Press Northwest Magazine’s Best Washington Wine List” since 2004. And eight is not enough. POLICIES: Most restaurants bury their half-bottle selections. Not this one. And his prices remain lower than most, including near retail for those from Long Shadow in Walla Walla. P R E S S I N G S : Smiley faces symbolize personal favorites, and Van Over loves Syrah. He used 4 of his 16 on this variety.

104 W. Woodin, Chelan, WA, 98816, 800553-8225, dineatcampbells.com.

OUTSTANDING WASHINGTON WINE LISTS BARKING FROG, WOODINVILLE PROGRAM:

The devotion to

Bonneville Hot Springs Resort

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Washington state is obvious, starting with the impressive array of beautifully, large-format bottles near the front of the restaurant. P O L I C I E S : It must be difficult to pick from the 70+ wineries with nearby tasting rooms, but only about half make this list. P R E S S I N G S : Affable chef Bobby Moore hit the 10-year milestone at the Barking Frog this year. Barking Frog, 14580 NE 145th St., Woodinville, WA, 98072, 425-424-2999, willowslodge.com/wine_dine/ C A F E F L O R A , S E AT T L E P R O G R A M : A hand-picked list that features Seven Hills’ outstanding work with two less Bordeaux-varieties -- Carménère and Malbec. P O L I C I E S : Wines noted as vegan or sustainably farmed are highlighted, including Basel Cellars, Kyra and Oregon’s Montinore Estate. P R E S S I N G S : This year marks the 20th anniversary of this vegan restaurant.

2901 E. Madison St., Seattle, WA, 98112, 206-325-9100, cafeflora.com C H U R C H I L L’ S S T E A K H O U S E , SPOKANE P R O G R A M : There are a few more whites offered than one might expect at a steakhouse. P O L I C I E S : Support remains for Spokane wineries Barrister, Mountain Dome, Robert Karl and Whitestone. P R E S S I N G S : Fans of Cayuse will find a short veritcal of En Cerise Vineyard Syrah.

165 S. Post, Spokane, WA, 99201, 509474-9888, churchillssteakhouse.com. FAT O L I V E S , T R I - C I T I E S P R O G R A M : Their slogan: “Local wines, local vineyards, the pride of Washington.” Most wines made within an hour’s drive of Tri-Cities. P O L I C I E S : Corkage $2.50 per person. No corkage on Wednesdays. P R E S S I N G S : Rob Griffin (Barnard Griffin), Charlie Hoppes (Fidelitas) recently staged winemaker dinners. Home of the 28-inch pizza.

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Picazo’s Trina Cortez 255 Williams Blvd., Richland, WA, 99352, 509-946-6404, 300 N. Ely, Kennewick, WA, 99336, 509-735-5533, fatolivesrestaurant.com.. M A S S E L O W ’ S R E S TA U R A N T, A I RWAY HEIGHTS

Spokane wineries lead at Northern Quest Resort & Casino’s dining room, an assortment that includes Latah Creek’s delicious Huckleberry d’Latah, yet there’s also Bookwater’s SubPlot series and Boomtown Syrah. P O L I C I E S : Wednesdays during summer bring half-price on select bottles. P R E S S I N G S : This is billed as the Inland Empire’s only AAA Four Diamond dining room. PROGRAM:

Masselow’s Restaurant, Northern Quest Resort & Casino, 100 N. Hayford Road, Airway Heights, WA, 99001, 509-2427000, northernquest.com/dining/masselows. i

PICAZO 7SEVENTEEN WINE BAR & R E S TA U R A N T, K E N N E W I C K

P R O G R A M : Trina Cortez built the list matriculated from Prosser to Kennewick’s Southridge area this spring. There are 20 wines available by the glass, and each of the state’s

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P R O G R A M : Tasting flights generally place one NW wine with 2-3 from elsewhere. The selection of Washington Sauv Blancs (Efeste, Substance, Woodward Canyon) make for an interesting choice. P O L I C I E S : If they don’t carry that wine, corkage on first bottle is waived. P R E S S I N G S : Leave yourself the time to enjoy thumbing through the eclectic 68-page beverage list.

430 106th Ave. NE, Bellevue, WA, 98004, 425-502-6292, thepurplecafe.com. PURPLE, KIRKLAND P R O G R A M : Katelyn Peil oversees this assortment, among them was this flight of NW Vine Project (Chardonnay), Four Graces (Pinot Gris), Amavi (Semillon) and Tempus (Riesling). P O L I C I E S : Try before you buy when it comes to the glass pours. P R E S S I N G S : Among the fresh new faces here are O’Shea Scarborough Main Event and Reynvaan Family’s Unnamed Syrah.

323 Park Place Center, Kirkland, WA, 98033, 425-828-3772, thepurplecafe.com. P U R P L E , S E AT T L E P R O G R A M : Directing this list is Chris Horn, same as in Bellevue. The choices were trimmed by about 20 percent to 70 pages, but it’s still the biggest, and his flight of four Washington reds — two Cabs and two Merlot — is quite a learning tool. P O L I C I E S : Many of these wines can go out the door for 40 percent off list price.

P R E S S I N G S : A mere trio of Washington Rieslings seems too brief.

1225 Fourth Ave., Seattle, 98101, 206829-2280, thepurplecafe.com i

PURPLE, WOODINVILLE

P R O G R A M : Support for their neighborhood is evident as more than 40 wines from Woodinville appear. P O L I C I E S : Buy a case of your fave? Ask them about retail pricing. P R E S S I N G S : Gone is the glossary of terms in back.

14459 Woodinville-Redmond Road NE, Woodinville, WA, 98072, 425-483-7129, thepurplecafe.com. T H E M E LT I N G P O T, S P O K A N E

Walla Walla wineries, particularly Cougar Crest, receive a lot of attention. Local placings include Arbor Crest, Barrister, Coeur d’Alene, Grande Ronde, Robert Karl. Tri-City boutique Anelare a pleasant surprise. P O L I C I E S : Wine Down Wednesdays means 50 percent discount on bottles when ordering a four-course fondue dinner. P R E S S I N G S : Among those to participate in corkage-free program with Spokane-area wineries. PROGRAM:

Crescent Building, Second Floor, 707 W. Main Ave., Spokane, WA, 99201, 509-926-8000, spokanemp.com. T U L A L I P B AY R E S TA U R A N T, T U L A L I P P R O G R A M : Tommy Thompson offers 200+ wines from Washington as well as Oregon Pinot Noir at Tulalip Resort Casino’s fine-dining spot. P O L I C I E S : Each multi-course dinner by Perry Mascitti can be ordered with wine pairings. List of winemaker dinners includes Spring Valley, Betz, Quilceda, DeLille, Lachini, Andrew Will, Barage, Grand Reve. P R E S S I N G S : Nice touch to carry many of Northwest Totem Cellars’ acclaimed wines.

10200 Quil Ceda Blvd., Tulalip, WA, 98271, 360-716-1500, tulalipresort.com

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T U S C A N Y R U S T I C I TA L I A N B I S T R O , PROSSER P R O G R A M : Focus is Prosser-area wineries, including Coyote Canyon Sangiovese and Desert Wind Barbera. P O L I C I E S : Wines on list priced at near retail. P R E S S I N G S : Chef/owner Jessie Ayala, born/raised in Prosser, went through South Seattle CC acclaimed culinary program.

602 Sixth St., Prosser, WA, 99350, 509786-7600, eattuscany.com. i

VA L L E Y C A F E , E L L E N S B U R G

Gregory Beach made commitment to pair cuisine with Washington wines in 1981. P O L I C I E S : List is 90 percent Washington. Featured winery of the month includes public tasting during First Friday Art Walk. P R E S S I N G S : Wine shop in adjacent deli. String of awards from Washington Wine Commission goes back to 2003, and from Wine Press Northwest to 2000. PROGRAM:

105 W. Third Ave., Ellensburg, WA, 98926, 509-925-3050, valleycafeellensburg.com. V I S C O N T I ’ S R E S T O R A N T E I TA L I A N O , L E AV E N W O RT H

More than half of the 500+ list is Washington, which includes 100 entries from the Columbia Cascade region. P O L I C I E S : Affordable pricing of local wines. P R E S S I N G S : Co-owner/chef Daniel Carr continues to oversee the wine program. PROGRAM:

636 Front St., Leavenworth, WA, 98826, 509-548-1213. viscontis.com. V I S C O N T I ’ S R E S T O R A N T E I TA L I A N O , W E N AT C H E E P R O G R A M : Candy Mecham’s original restaurant sticks closer to Wenatchee-area wineries. Back is loaded with big Washington reds. P O L I C I E S : Nice snapshots of older vintages from some Walla Walla legends. P R E S S I N G S : Restaurant celebrated its 25th anniversary Jan. 1.

W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M

Celilo Restaurant and Bar 1737 N. Wenatchee Ave., Wenatchee, WA, 98801, 509-662-5013, viscontis.com. iϧ W I L D

G I N G E R , S E AT T L E

Syrah and Cab-based reds from Washington easily found among 30,000-bottle collection that began in 1989 and includes magnum of Woodward Canyon 1994 Old Vines Cab ($205). P O L I C I E S : Not afraid to explore, for example, listing this issue’s rather obscure Match Maker wine — Memaloose Idiot’s Grace Cabernet Franc, cellared in Lyle, Wash. P R E S S I N G S : Perlage system used on sparkling wines, Enomatic system on stills. Opened second restaurant in Bellevue. PROGRAM:

1401 Third Ave. Seattle, WA, 98101, 206-623-4450, wildginger.net.

BEST OREGON WINE LIST i

T H E J O E L PA L M E R H O U S E , D AY T O N

P R O G R A M : The focus is pairing mushrooms and truffles with Oregon Pinot Noir, which fills twothirds of the wine list. P O L I C I E S : Christopher Czarnecki took over in the kitchen for his father/owner, Jack, and now they produce truffle oil.

P R E S S I N G S : Peter Rosback of Sineann calls this “Oregon’s PREMIER fine dining destination.”

Joel Palmer House, 600 Ferry St., Dayton, OR, 97114, 503-864-2995, joelpalmerhouse.com.

OUTSTANDING OREGON WINE LISTS i C A S C A D E D I N I N G R O O M AT TIMBERLINE LODGE, MOUNT HOOD P R O G R A M : Program manager David Villali once received our “Best Oregon” award five straight years. This will feel like heaven for supporters of Patty Green, Peter Rosback and Ken Wright. P O L I C I E S : Ask server to arrange for wine tasting, tour of cellar. Don’t expect to find bargains because of transportation/storage difficulties. P R E S S I N G S : Reservations are required for dinner.

The Cascade Dining Room, Timberline Lodge, OR, 97028, 503-622-0700, timberlinelodge.com. i

C E L I L O R E S TA U R A N T A N D B A R , HOOD RIVER

P R O G R A M : Columbia Gorge remains a centerpiece, listing more than a dozen wineries. P O L I C I E S : Corkage is $20/ $40 for magnum.

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P R E S S I N G S : Among reserves is a 2000 Cab from Syncline, one of first vintages the Mantones made in the Gorge.

poured into Riedel. P R E S S I N G S : Christopher Flanagan, who succeeded Jason Stoller Smith as chef, grew up in nearby Carlton.

Celilo Restaurant and Bar, 16 Oak St., Hood River, OR, 97031, 541-386-5710, celilorestaurant.com.

Dundee Bistro, 100-A SW Seventh St., Dundee, OR, 97115, 503-554-1650, dundeebistro.com.

COLUMBIA GORGE HOTEL, HOOD RIVER

GM Paul Robinson continues to restore this property, first built in 1904, and renewed its reputation for supporting Northwest wineries. Permanent site of the Northwest Wine Summit competition. P O L I C I E S : Corkage waived on Tuesdays if your bottle is from the Columbia Gorge AVA. P R E S S I N G S : In 1981, Rich Cushman planted his small block of Riesling almost directly across the freeway.

J O RY, N E W B E R G

PROGRAM:

Columbia Gorge Hotel, 4000 Westcliff Dr., Hood River, OR, 97031, 800-3451921, columbiagorgehotel.com i

DUNDEE BISTRO, DUNDEE

PROGRAM:

Wines throughout

Jory at The Allison Inn & Spa

Oregon featured in this wine country restaurant/wine shop owned by the Ponzi family. P O L I C I E S : Weekly wine seminars required for staff. Each wine is

Embrace, appreciate those closest to you WOODINVILLE, Wash. — ’ve long believed that misfortune can be transformative. So it was when we lost our restaurant to fire. Climbing back was tough. We worked out of a tent; then a winery. Finally, forced to sell our land or face bankruptcy, we sold the farm, spun a new dream, and pushed on. As we built up our wine program, we expanded into famous international selections. These classics brought notoriety. They also added an unanticipated — and welcome! — halo of respect to our deep, sometimes eccentric, collection of Oregon and Washington wines. We won a wall of wine awards. The national press gave them to us for the cults and classics. Wine Press Northwest honored our regional scope.

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The Allison Inn & Spa pit Burgundy vs. Willamette over the course of a 37-page wine list, with nearly 200 Oregong Pinot Noir to choose from. P O L I C I E S : Thursdays are “Celebrity Wine Tender Evenings” when winemakers or winery owners pour an hour for guests. P R E S S I N G S : One features on list pays tribute to “Women Winemakers We Love.” PROGRAM:

2525 Allison Lane, Newberg, OR, 97132, 503-554-2525, theallison.com. FIVE SPICE SEAFOOD & WINE BAR, LAKE OSWEGO P R O G R A M : Lakeside spot pays tribute to Oregon Pinot Noir with

Building a cellar of known rarities takes time, doggedness, and, of course, money. But discovering the new and budding flower, that takes curiosity and dedication. And that, is it not, is where the real story runs. It is not in chasing powerful wines made in an international style, wines of everywhere that say nothing to us in particular. Rather, it is coming home, having travelled the world, to find what we were seeking was always here, right there at our own feet, visible with new eyes. So it is that I rededicate our cellar to this region: to the men and women who plant the vines, wait the years, struggle with weather, and squeeze the goodness of grapes autumn by autumn. This is their story as well as yours. Push down those roots. Pull up the essence of this place. Put your world not just in the mouth, but in our collective hearts and souls.

— RON ZIMMERMAN P R O P R I E T O R , T H E H E R B FA R M

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Riverside Restaurant’s Cebu Lounge

315 First St., Suite 201, Lake Oswego, OR, 97034, 503-697-8889, fivespicerestaurant.com. iϧ R I V E R S I D E

R E S TA U R A N T, HOOD RIVER

P R O G R A M : Jan McCartan supports Columbia Gorge wineries on both sides of the Columbia, listing 33 wines made locally or using local grapes. P O L I C I E S : Most bottles available for less than $50, including Beaux Frères 2009 Les Cousins Pinot Noir ($42). P R E S S I N G S : House wines, crafted by Hood River native Rich Cushman, are grown within 5 miles of hotel.

Hood River Inn, 1108 E. Marina Way, Hood River, OR, 97031, 541-386-2200, hoodriverinn.com.

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BEST B.C. WINE LIST iϧ L O C A L

LOUNGE • GRILLE, SUMMERLAND

PROFILE: Undoubtedly the most focused wine list in the Northwest. All wines are within 100 kilometers of the restaurant, with distance from

Local Lounge • Grille listed. P O L I C I E S : Only wines with Vintner’s Quality Alliance earn spot. More than 20 available by the glass. “Bin ends” category a resourceful way to handle closeouts. PRESSINGS: One of the most fashionable restaurants in British Columbia — perhaps Pacific Northwest wine country — now has

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the herbies P R E S S I N G S : One travel writer likened this $50M complex to something owned by a James Bond villain.

Fetch, Black Rock Oceanfront Resort, Marine Dr., Ucluelet, B.C. V0R 3A0, 250-726-4800, blackrockresort.com M I R A D O R O R E S TA U R A N T, O L I V E R P R O F I L E : The on-premise restaurant of Tinhorn Creek Vineyards comes with a stunning vista of the Golden Mile and Black Sage Bench. Only Tinhorn Creek. wines are available as glass pours, and there are a dozen on offer. P O L I C I E S : If it’s not from B.C., it’s not on this list. Pentâge, our B.C. Winery of the Year, and Silkscarf earn repeat placements, as does the new Clos du Soleil in Keremeos. P R E S S I N G S : Sommelier Justin McAuliffe’s inventory includes Sandra Oldfield’s full library, dating to 1994. Closed January, February.

32830 Tinhorn Creek Road, Oliver, B.C. V0H 1TO, 250-498-3742, tinhorn.com O ’ D O U L’ S R E S TA U R A N T & B A R , VA N C O U V E R

O’Doul’s Restaurant & Bar

a website to match. 12817 Lakeshore Dr., Summerland Waterfront Resort & Spa, Summerland, BC, V0H 1Z1, 250-494-8855, thelocalgroup.ca.

OUTSTANDING B.C. WINE LISTS B I S T R O 1 0 1 AT T H E PA C I F I C I N S T I T U T E O F C U L I N A RY A RT S , VA N C O U V E R

Granville Island academy instructs students with regional ingredients, so provincial wines dominate. This summer, the instructor showed their knowledge of the PROFILE:

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Okanagan by featuring 2 sparkling wines by 8th Generation. P O L I C I E S : Approximately half of the wines available by bottle and glass. P R E S S I N G S : Menu changes daily. Bistro 101 at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts, 1505 W. Second Ave., Vancouver, B.C., V6H 3Y4, 604-734-4488, bistro101.com F E T C H R E S TA U R A N T, U C L U E L E T

Luxury resort on Vancouver Island’s remote west coast gears cuisine/list to provincial ingredients. P O L I C I E S : Wine cellar, which seats 80, is carved into coastal rocks and temperature controlled by seawater.

P R O G R A M : Listel Hotel jazz club continues to spotlight Blue Mountain, Burrowing Owl, Joie, Kettle Valley, LaFrenz, Wild Goose, with growing presence by 8th Generation. P O L I C I E S : A glass of Columbia Crest Grand Estates Cab for $9. P R E S S I N G S : Each summer, the Listel serves as official hotel for the 10-day Vancouver International Jazz Festival.

1300 Robson St., Vancouver, BC V6E 1C5, 604-661-1406, odoulsrestaurant.com.

PROFILE:

BEST IDAHO WINE LIST i

THE ORCHARD HOUSE, CALDWELL

PROGRAM:

If it’s not made in the

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Brick 20 Bistro

Snake River Valley AVA, it won’t be sold here. P O L I C I E S : Bottles sold virtually at retail prices. P R E S S I N G S : Long list of Idaho winemakers show up as friends on their Facebook page. 14949 Sunnyslope Road, Highway 55, Caldwell, Idaho, 83607, 208-459-8200, theorchardhouse.us.

OUTSTANDING IDAHO WINE LISTS i

B R I C K 2 9 B I S T R O , N A M PA

P R O G R A M : Idaho takes center stage with more than 20 in-state wineries represented, including hard-to-find reds from Fraser Vineyard. P O L I C I E S : Wine and dine on

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Monday means 2 can get an entreé and a house pour for $29. P R E S S I N G S : Dustan Bristol has made semifinals for NW James Beard Award 3 straight years. 320 11th Ave. S., Nampa, ID, 83651, 208-468-0029, brick29.com. i

R E D F E AT H E R L O U N G E , B O I S E

P R O G R A M : Past award winner returns with renewed focus on Northwest wines and local farmers. P O L I C I E S : “Probably the No. 1 restaurant in Idaho educating customers on all the great wines in Idaho, Oregon and Washington,” a nominating winery owner wrote to us. P R E S S I N G S : Ultra-hip wine cellar available for casual dinner or party rental.

246 N. Eighth St., Boise, ID, 83702, 208-429-6340, justeatlocal.com.

THE SANDBAR RIVER HOUSE, MARSING P R O F I L E : Fans of Ste. Chapelle can find 10 of their favorite wines, none priced at more than $19. P O L I C I E S : Remains perhaps Northwest’s least expensive wine list. More than 30 wines available, only one is more than $30 — Davis Creek Tempranillo ($30.95.) P R E S S I N G S : Restaurant overlooks Snake River with distinctive Lizard Butte rock formation just beyond.

18 Sandbar Ave., Marsing, Idaho, 83639, 208-896-4124, sandbarriverhouse.com.

ERIC DEGERMAN is managing editor of Wine Press

Northwest. Email him at edegerman@winepressnw.com. KE N S U S Y N S KI is a Seattle artist who specializes in wine countr y art and whose artwork has accompanied this competition’s results since 2001. His website is susynski.com.

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WINE COUNTRY: WALLA WALLA VALLEY

We produce elegant Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot from our Seven Hills and Pepper Bridge estate vineyards. These luxurious wines showcase the distinctive terroir of the Walla Walla Valley.

Pepper Bridge Winery 1704 J.B. George Road, Walla Walla, WA 99362 509-525-6502 Open daily 10 am - 4 pm • www.pepperbridge.com Now also open in Woodinville, behind the Hollywood Schoolhouse!

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WINE COUNTRY: WALLA WALLA VALLEY

840 "C" St. Walla Walla, WA We are dedicated to making the finest wines in the Walla Walla valley for that special occasion with friends, family or both. Open Sat. 10-4 Special Events & by appt

509-527-8400 www.fivestarcellars.com

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WINE COUNTRY: LAKE CHELAN

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WINE COUNTRY: LEAVENWORTH AREA

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UNUSUALLY GOOD

WHITES BY ANDY PERDUE g PHOTOS BY JACKIE JOHNSTON

W

e are not a region that drinks just Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Gris. We are a region that explores new and unusual grape varieties. Really, discovery is the joy of wine appreciation. And in the Pacific Northwest, we have so many smallproduction varieties to try. Muscat in its various forms has been grown here for more than a half-century, and many newer German grapes developed in the past 100 years have been planted in some quantity in British Columbia. For this judging, we gathered 48 wines from all four regions of the Pacific Northwest that use 20 different grapes — none of which could be considered mainstream varieties. In fact, our expert judges were unfamiliar with many of them, which made this tasting particularly enjoyable for them. Our judges were Winnie Alberg, David Seaver, Paul Sinclair and Bob Woehler, all members of our tasting panel who regularly judge competitions throughout the Pacific Northwest. On to the results:

are a treasure, but we come to expect greatness from Heidi Noble and Michael Dinn, who make some of the most beautiful wines anywhere. This wine, made with the rare Yellow Muscat grape, opens with amazing aromas of delicate orange blossoms and rosewater, followed by dramatic flavors of oranges and lemons. The acidity is simply stunning, and everything about this wine is balanced and beautiful. (453 cases, 11.4% alc.)

OUTSTANDING

Barnard Griffin $17 2010 Orange Muscat, Columbia Valley Muscat is actually a family of grapes, of which there are more than a half-dozen different varieties. Orange Muscat, which reveals orange aromas and flavors, is one of the rarest. Barnard Griffin in Richland, Wash., has made an Orange Muscat for a few years with

JoieFarm $23 CDN 2010 Muscat, Okanagan Valley Dry Muscats are rare to find; simply put, they just aren’t made. And dry Muscats this delicious

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Best buy! Kramer Vineyards $15 NV Celebrate Semi-Sparkling MüllerThurgau, Yamhill-Carlton District More than 25 years ago, the Kramers began planting Müller-Thurgau on their estate near the northern Yamhill County town of Gaston. It’s an unusual variety, especially in this light, bright and delicious semi-sparkling style. The nose shows off aromas of apricots, mangoes, pineapples, lemons and apples, and the palate is frothy and fun, with flavors of papayas, oranges, peaches and apples. This wine is a lot of fun, and we wish more wineries invested effort in this style. (195 cases, 10.5% alc.) Mount Boucherie Family Estate $16 CDN 2010 Ehrenfelser, Okanagan Valley This variety was created in 1929 as a cross between Silvaner and Riesling and is named after Burg Ehrenfels, a medieval castle on the Rhine River. Though the grape is rarely grown anywhere in the world, it is successful in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, where it is used to make everything from dry to ice wines. This is a superb example, with aromas of apples, oranges, honeysuckle and honeydew melons. On the palate, it’s a light-bodied wine loaded with fruit flavors such as sweet peaches and apples with underlying mineral notes. (300 cases, 13.4% alc.)

great success. This opens with tell-tale aromas of orange blossoms, as well as cloves, rosewater and baklava. On the palate, it offers flavors of orange zest and strawberries. It’s an off-dry wine that is delicious and well balanced. (288 cases, 13.2% alc.) Best buy! Arrowleaf Cellars $15 CDN 2009 Snow Tropics Vidal, Okanagan Valley This hybrid grape was developed in France in the 1930s and is seen a bit in Canada. Arrowleaf, which is north of Kelowna near Okanagan Centre, won a Platinum from us for this exact wine last winter, so it is showing remarkable consistency at a high level. This opens with aromas of flowers, oranges and shaved almonds, followed by easy-drinking flavors of lemons, oranges, apples and grapefruits. It’s a luscious wine from first sip through the memorable finish. (670 cases, 12% alc.) Agate Ridge Vineyard $21 2009 Estate Roussanne, Rogue Valley Roussanne is a versatile wine in its native Rhône Valley. It stands alone in the south and is blended with Marsanne in the north. This example from Southern Oregon opens with aromas that reminded us of fresh-out-of-theoven apple pie, complete with cinnamon. On the palate, it provides bright, edgy flavors of limes, grassiness and minerality. Pair this beauty with creamy seafood bisque. (84 cases, 12.6% alc.) Abacela Vineyards & Winery $18 2010 Estate Albariño, Umpqua Valley This racy white wine is at home on the Iberian Peninsula, perhaps most famously in Spain. Abacela owner Earl Jones is helping to bring it to prominence in the Pacific Northwest, and his latest vintage is another beauty. It is clean, crisp and inviting on the nose, with refreshing aromas of honeydew melons, lemons, pineapples and cucumbers. On the palate, the acidity is simply dazzling with amazing brightness and flavors of limes and quince. This is a beautiful food wine, and we can easily imagine it with oysters or a crab dip. (1,259 cases, 13.1% alc.) Summerhill Pyramid Winery $20 CDN 2009 Ehrenfelser, Okanagan Valley Near

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Kelowna, B.C., on the banks of Okanagan Lake, New York native Steve Cipes has created a unique wine destination. His wines, produced from organic grapes, are just as expressive as his ideas. This bright and luscious wine opens with aromas of mangoes, peaches and limes, followed by hedonistic flavors of limes, quince and minerality. It’s easy to imagine pairing this with grilled halibut topped with peach salsa. (3,000 cases, 12.5% alc.)

EXCELLENT Carpenter Creek $24 2009 Late Harvest Siegerrebe, Puget Sound This wine, created in 1929 in Germany, is a cross of Madeleine Angevine and Gewürztraminer, and its name means “victory wine.” Purportedly, the grape was brought into North America by the owners of Bainbridge Island Winery west of Seattle, so its history in the Puget Sound region is lengthy. This version is superb, revealing aromas of limes and apples, followed by sweet, ripe flavors of orchard and stone fruit, all backed with bright acidity. (140 cases, 12.1% alc.) Hogue Cellars $25 2010 Terroir Series Andrews & Rowell Vineyard Muscat Canelli, Horse Heaven Hills Co Dinn, director of winemaking at this large Yakima Valley winery, uses the Terroir Series to play with varieties that might otherwise get lost in the shuffle of producing a halfmillion cases of wine. Thank goodness he did because we would not want to miss out on this. It opens with gentle aromas of rose petals, honeydew melons, pears and orange water, followed by sweet, elegant flavors of oranges and ripe peaches. (418 cases, 10.2% alc.) LaStella Winery $20 CDN 2010 Moscato d’Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley Just over the border in B.C.’s Okanagan Valley is this up-and-coming producer. That it chose to focus its efforts on the rare and often-overlooked Muscat grape speaks to its courage and focus. This is a gorgeous effort, with pretty aromas of apple blossoms, peaches and pineapples, followed by flavors that are bright, sweet and delicious. (366 cases, 9.2% alc.) Best buy! Maryhill Winery $14 2010 Moscato di Canelli, Columbia Valley Of all the Muscats in Washington, Muscat Canelli is the one we see the most, and this large family-owned winery in the Columbia Gorge has given it a fanciful Italian-style name. It’s a charmer, with aromas of peaches, rosewater, lychee, oranges and peaches, followed by flavors of peaches, honey and tropical fruit. (746 cases, 13.2% alc.) Oliver Twist Estate Winery $19 CDN 2010 Oliver’s Choice Kerner, Okanagan Valley Created in 1929 in Germany, Kerner is a cross of Trollinger and Riesling. It often shows off aromas and flavors reminiscent of Muscat, but this example seems to play off its Riesling roots. It opens with aromas of limes, mineral and apples. It’s an easy drinking

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white with flavors of bright citrus, apples and even Rainier cherries. It has just a touch of sweetness to round out the mouthwatering acidity. (725 cases, 12.5% alc.) Coyote Canyon Winery $22 2010 Albariño, Horse Heaven Hills This winery with estate vineyards in the Horse Heaven Hills and a tasting room in Prosser, Wash., is quickly earning our admiration for this variety (and plenty of others). The 2009 version was our top wine last year in a judging of Iberian varieties, and it later won a Platinum from us. This isn’t far behind, with complex aromas of limes, lemons and something that reminds us of a country road after a spring rainstorm. On the palate, it’s beautifully balanced with lime and mineral flavors, great acidity that is rounded out with a bit of sweetness, a rich mouth feel and great length. (483 cases, 13.9% alc.) Best buy! Arrowleaf Cellars $15 CDN 2010 Bacchus, Okanagan Valley Named for the Roman god of wine, this variety was created in 1933 in Germany by crossing Müller-Thurgau with a cross of Silvaner and Riesling. While Bacchus tends to be grown in cooler, wetter climates, it’s found a home around the 50th parallel in the arid Okanagan Valley. This example opens with aromas of limes, apples and minerals, followed by bright flavors of lemons, apples and limes. It shows off great acidity, leading us to pair it with seared scallops. (780 cases, 12.2% alc.) Best buy! Montinore Estate $12 2010 Organic Estate Müller-Thurgau, Willamette Valley This variety was created in 1882 by Dr. Hermann Müller in the Swiss canton of Thurgau, who crossed Riesling with Madeleine Royale. It is Germany’s secondmost-planted grape (after Riesling) and a fair bit is grown in Oregon and Washington west of the Cascade Mountains. This version opens with aromas of apples, limes and minerals, followed by round, plump flavors of ripe peaches and sweet apples. It’s a fun, tasty wine. (999 cases, 10.2% alc.) Best buy! Abiqua Wind Vineyard $12 2010 Chloe’s Breeze Estate MüllerThurgau, Willamette Valley While all the focus in the Willamette Valley tends to be on the western side of the valley, vineyards east of Interstate 5 are quietly producing superb wines of their own. Here’s a great example from vines planted some three decades ago. The aromas on this wine reminded us of roses, minerals and crushed oyster shells, and the palate was a good blend of flavor, acidity and mouth feel. It is well rounded, thanks to a bit of residual sugar, which helps the flavors of pears, pineapples and peaches shine. (269 cases, 11.5% alc.) Recline Ridge Vineyards & Winery $18 CDN 2009 Siegerrebe, British Columbia Those who grow grapes this far north are nothing short of heroic, and the folks at Recline Ridge are crafting superb wines from cool-climate

grapes. This Siegerrebe offers aromas of rosewater, apples, orange blossoms and gardenias. On the palate, it’s an off-dry wine that provides flavors of ripe cantaloupes, freshly picked apples and Rainier cherries. It’s a bright and delicious wine. (250 cases, 12.5% alc.) Recline Ridge Vineyards & Winery $18 CDN 2009 Kerner, British Columbia This aromatic white variety is grown in small numbers in British Columbia, and this winery in the northern end of the Okanagan Valley is crafting a superb example. It opens with aromas of pears, white peaches, honey and exotic spices, followed by flavors of apples and ripe pears. It’s a dry and delicious white. (200 cases, 13.8% alc.) Best buy! Kramer Vineyards $10 2009 Estate Müller-Thurgau, YamhillCarlton District This family operation in northern Yamhill County is a favorite. Trudy and Keith Kramer started the winery in the 1980s, and daughter Kimberley has joined them in the cellar as a winemaker. This Müller-Thurgau opens with aromas of melons, apples and white pepper, followed by bright, pleasant flavors of pears, apples, limes and melons. (285 cases, 11.7% alc.) St. Hubertus Estate Winery $17 CDN 2010 Chasselas, Okanagan Valley Outside of its native Switzerland, Chasselas is most often found in France’s Loire Valley and (of all places) Turkey, where it is grown as a table grape. This winery near Kelowna, B.C., has crafted a delicious and approachable version with aromas of bright, fresh tree fruit and crisp flavors of Asian pears, lemons, starfruit and apples. (400 cases, 10.1% alc.) Chehalem Wines $21 2010 Grüner Veltliner, Ribbon Ridge Known primarily in its native Austria, Grüner is starting to find a home in western Oregon. The grapes for this example were grown in the Northwest’s smallest appellation, which is in the northern Willamette Valley. It opens with aromas of limes, lemons and minerals, followed by bright, edgy flavors of limes and apples. It shows great acidity and would pair beautifully with shellfish in a light sauce. (207 cases, 12.9% alc.) Barnard Griffin Winery $20 2009 Roussanne, Columbia Valley Owner/winemaker Rob Griffin admittedly drives his staff a little nuts with the vast array of wines he crafts, but it’s hard to fault him for wanting to experiment with so many great grape varieties. This white wine most often associated with France’s Rhône Valley is starting to pop up all over the Northwest, especially in Washington’s Columbia Valley. This version opens with aromas of pears, honey, apples and something that reminded us of Sunday morning waffles. On the palate, it’s a dry wine with flavors of lemons, apricots and Asian pears. (112 cases, 13.3% alc.) Agate Ridge Vineyard $20 2009 Marsanne, Rogue Valley Often thought of as Roussanne’s cousin because it’s

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unusual whites usually blended with it in its native France, Marsanne can stand alone, too. This example from Southern Oregon opens with aromas of orange blossoms, hay and green apples. On the palate, it offers flavors of limes, pears and apples. We can see drinking this with spicy Mexican food or even buttered popcorn. (118 cases, 12.5% alc.) Hester Creek Estate Winery $19 CDN 2010 Trebbiano, Okanagan Valley Also known as Ugni Blanc, Trebbiano is the second-most-planted wine grape in the world, grown mostly in France (where it makes Cognac) and Italy (where it goes into balsamic vinegar). It is rare indeed in the Pacific Northwest, so this is a real treasure. It shows off aromas of lemon curd and Nilla wafer, followed by flavors of lemons, oranges and sweet spices. It’s a well-balanced and easydrinking wine. (850 cases, 13.8% alc.) Recline Ridge Vineyards & Winery $17 CDN 2008 Optima, British Columbia The name for this German cross comes from the Latin phrase “the best.” It was created in 1930 from Rieslaner (itself a cross of Riesling and Silvaner) and Müller-Thurgau. This version from the northern Okanagan Valley is perfumy with aromas of limes and herbs, followed by clean, bright flavors of herbs, figs, persimmons and lemons. Just a touch of residual sugar helps round out the edges. (200 cases, 12% alc.) Recline Ridge Vineyards & Winery $18 CDN 2008 Ortega, British Columbia This German variety was created soon after World War II (in 1948), when Müller-Thurgan and Siegerrebe were crossed. It provides aromas of minerals, lemons and pears, followed by flavors of melons, orange zest, sweet herbs and spices. (500 cases, 12.3% alc.) Domaine Trouvere $28 2009 Indigene, Dundee Hills This is the most interesting variety of the bunch. It is a mutation of Pinot Gris that was discovered and propagated near the town of Lafayette, Ore., making it indigenous to the Dundee Hills. The variety does not yet have a name, but owner/winemaker Don Lange has nicknamed it “Pinot Pierre.” It opens with fascinating aromas of apples and pears, followed by rich, round, delicious flavors of grapefruits and apples. (20 cases, 13% alc.) 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards $19 2008 Estate Roussanne, Snake River Valley Viticulturists in the emerging Snake River Valley are experimenting with new varieties to see what will grow in their high-altitude volcanic soils. This Roussanne offers aromas of lemons, oranges and grapefruits, followed by rich flavors of bold, delicious lemons. It’s a lovely wine. (386 cases, 13.2% alc.)

RECOMMENDED Zerba Cellars $20 2010 Estate Roussanne, Walla Walla Valley This white Rhône variety from a top Oregon winery in the Walla Walla Valley

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opens with aromas of butterscotch, almonds and apples, followed by flavors of walnuts and fresh orchard fruit. (96 cases, 14.2% alc.) Agate Ridge Vineyard $17 2008 Marsanne/Roussanne, Rogue Valley This is made in a classic northern Rhône style. It offers aromas and flavors of melons, peaches and a touch of oak. It’s a delicious version from Southern Oregon. (130 cases, 14.1% alc.) Stag’s Hollow Winery $18 CDN 2010 Tragically Vidal, Okanagan Valley This French hybrid is used in Canada’s Ontario region, and a bit also is grown in British Columbia. This offers aromas of walnuts and apples, followed by sweet flavors of ripe pears, butterscotch and spices. (370 cases, 13% alc.) Alexandria Nicole Cellars $28 2010 Destiny Ridge Vineyard Estate Roussanne, Horse Heaven Hills Owner/winemaker Jarrod Boyle has crafted a delicious southern Rhône-style wine from estate grapes in the Horse Heaven Hills. It provides aromas and flavors of orange cream and is round and rich. (218 cases, 13.4% alc.) Recline Ridge Vineyards & Winery $16 CDN 2007 Shuswap Serenade, British Columbia In the northern Okanagan Valley, Recline Ridge makes this wine by blending Madeleine Angevine and Madeleine Sylvaner. It is an off-dry wine that reveals aromas of apples and peaches and expressive flavors of apple cider, lychee and dried mangoes. (200 cases, 12.8% alc.) Hard Row to Hoe $18 2010 Marsanne, Yakima Valley Winemaker Judy Phelps brings these grapes from the Yakima Valley to her winery on the shores of Lake Chelan. This delicious wine provides

W I N E R AT I N G S All rated wines are tasted blind then placed in the following categories: Outstanding These wines have superior characteristics and should be highly sought after. Excellent Top-notch wines with particularly high qualities. Recommended Delicious, well-made wines with true varietal characteristics. Best Buy! A wine that is $15 or under. Prices are suggested retail and should be used as guidelines. Prices are in U.S. dollars unless otherwise noted.

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aromas and flavors of apples, lemons and tropical fruit. (270 cases, 14.5% alc.) Chateau Lorane $16 2008 Huxelrebe, Oregon This rare variety was created in 1927 in Germany by crossing Chasselas and Courtiller Musque and is grown a bit in the southern Willamette Valley. It is a nutty wine with aromas and flavors of oranges and minerals. (107 cases, 13.9% alc.) Best buy! Mount Baker Vineyards $12 2007 Estate Siegerrebe, Puget Sound The vineyard for this wine is so close to the Canadian border, you nearly need to know the metric system to drink it. This shows off aromas and flavors of pineapples, apples, oranges and strawberries. (208 cases, 11.1% alc.) Troon Vineyard $20 2010 Vermentino, Applegate Valley This white grape is widely planted in Sardinia, as well as the Piedmont region of Italy and southern France. This version comes from Southern Oregon and offers aromas and flavors of lemons, apples and pears. Its a plush, delicious and approachable wine. (90 cases, 12% alc.) Amity Vineyards $20 2009 Sunnyside Vineyard Auxerrois, Willamette Valley Primarily grown in Alsace, this grape is thought to have the same ancestry as Chardonnay. In the Northwest, we see a fair bit in British Columbia, so it’s exciting to taste a version from Oregon, too. It shows off aromas and flavors of melons, lemons, pineapples and mangoes. (61 cases, 13.9% alc.) Arrowleaf Cellars $14 CDN 2009 Bacchus, Okanagan Valley We see this German variety in British Columbia and nowhere else in the Northwest. This is a delicious version with aromas and flavors of Crenshaw melons, mangoes, lemons and cantaloupes. (780 cases, 12.5% alc.) De Ponte Cellars $24 2010 D.F.B. Melon de Bourgogne, Willamette Valley Melon de Bourgogne is native to Burgundy and is most famous in the Loire Valley, where it can become Muscadet. It is most likely a cross of Pinot Noir and Gouais Blanc. This opens with aromas of pears, melons and limes, followed by flavors of apples and Asian pears. (766 cases, 12.5% alc.) Best buy! Bridgeview Vineyards $12 2010 Semi-Sparkling Muscat, Southern Oregon One of Oregon’s largest wineries is crafting a wine in the style of Asti Spumante, which we applaud. This is a fun and tasty wine with aromas of orange zest and flavors of fresh peaches. ı AN D Y PE R D U E is editor-in-chief of Wine Press

Northwest. CDN: Canadian dollars.

JACKIE JOHNSTON , a freelance photojournalist, is a

regular contributor and the page designer for Wine Press Northwest. Her website is WineCountryPhotos.com

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Spokane VINO! A WINESHOP, where you don't need to know a lot about wine. Join our discount buying club or our "Wine of the Month Club." Wine tasting every Friday & Saturday. Join the fun at 222 S. Washington St., Spokane, WA 800-8265674, 509-838-1229 www.vinowine.com

Oregon Greater Portland Area BRENTWOOD WINE COMPANY — Internet fine wine weekly auctions. Titanium Schott Zwiesel crystal wholesale & retail. The Northwest's largest buyer of fine wine. For free appraisal, email wine list: appraisals@brentwoodwine.com (503) 638 WINE • www.brentwoodwine.com

Oregon Coast THE CELLAR ON 10TH, Astoria. Corner of 10th & Marine Dr. Finest selection of regional wines. Wine bar; weekly tastings; storage; gifts. (503) 325-6600 • www.thecellaron10th.com E-mail us: thecellaron10th@aol.com TIFFANY’S DRUG, Bandon Shopping Center, Bandon, OR. (541) 347-4438. The Oregon Coast’s Destination Wine Shop with over 1000 Fine Wines! www.tiffanywineshop.com

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WINE COUNTRY: YAKIMA

2008 Riesling Ice Wine Double Gold Medal Winner “Naturally frozen on the vine. The decadent sweetness and Tasting Room vibrant structure Thu-Mon 10am - 6pm I-82 Exit at Zillah lasts on a long (509) 829-6810 aftertaste.” www.claarcellars.com

WINE COUNTRY: COLUMBIA RIVER

Enjoy our authentic Italian Cuisine, friendly atmosphere and extensive wine selection. Visconti’s Ristorante Visconti’s Italian Italiano Restaurant 636 Front St. 1737 N. Wenatchee Ave., Leavenworth, WA Wenatchee, WA

509-548-1213

509-662-5013

www.viscontis.com

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WINE COUNTRY: TRI-CITIES & RED MOUNTAIN

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WINE COUNTRY: TRI-CITIES & RED MOUNTAIN

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Chili Marinated Calamari with Lentils and Romesco is paired with Viento’s 2010 Sangiovese Rosé.

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M AT C H M A K E R S WINE

A river runs through it Hood River Inn’s Riverside Restaurant BY ERIC DEGERMAN

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PHOTOGRAPHS BY JACKIE JOHNSTON

wo decades ago, Rhode Island chef Mark DeResta joined a pack of college buddies on a summer vacation destined for Hood River, Ore. — an outdoor paradise he’d only been told about. More than 25 years ago, Jan McCartan also left the East Coast and came upon the Columbia Gorge with little knowledge of Pacific Northwest wines. Judging by their success and satisfaction at the Riverside Restaurant, it seems as if neither will soon leave the Hood River Inn. “I had a friend in college who was out here windsurfing in the summer and he said it was a great place,” DeResta said. “So five of us packed our bags, rented a U-Haul and drove across the country for a month. “We got to Hood River on a Sunday night. I went up to the top of that ridge on my mountain bike on a Monday, and Tuesday at four o’clock I was in a kitchen and started working that night,” he continued. “ That was 1993 and I have never left. Why would you leave?” The Hood River Inn — a Best Western Plus property — features 158 guest rooms. The adjacent Riverside Restaurant seats 100 diners with 75 in the Cebu Lounge. McCartan serves as wine

director and catering manager. “One of the things people don’t realize about a Best Western is they are all independently owned and operated,” McCartan said, “and we’re committed to upgrading the property and making it more trendy.” They’ve accomplished those goals as recent renovations to the Cebu Lounge and the Riverside Restaurant seem to transport the guest downriver to the big city. “Our goal is to offer that type of feel and cuisine that you might find in downtown Portland, only with a more casual Gorge style and feel,” McCartan said. “Whether you come in your shorts or come off the water or come off the mountain, we want you to feel comfortable and have a great meal.” DeResta has been providing those since he landed in Hood River, starting at the Sixth Street Bistro — one of the first in the Pacific Northwest to showcase regional cuisine and Northwest wines. “That was one of the only places in town in ‘93, and I think now there are 63,” DeResta said. Sixth Street bartender Brian McNamara subsequently recruited DeResta to create the food program

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Viento Wines $12 2010 Chukar Ridge Vineyard Sangiovese Rosé, Columbia Valley —227 cases produced, 12.6% alcohol ich Cushman proudly adopted “Born in the Gorge” as his tagline and named his winery Viento in reference to the Spanish word for “wind.” His roots literally run deeper than most in Hood River, Ore., having planted Riesling in 1981 at his vineyard called Columbia Gorge Vineyard. Thirty years later, he’s got one son, Peter, making wine with him. Another son, Joe, is closing in on his horticulture degree, with a focus on viticulture, from Oregon State — his alma mater. “Maybe we’ll have a dynasty,” Rich said. His first job as head winemaker came in 1986 at Chateau Benoit, and he began working on his own label soon after. He’s long made the wine for Phelps Creek Vineyards and its Mt. Defiance Wine Co., brand, as well as Dry Hollow, Mt. Hood and the new Ziegler Vineyards. He builds sparkling wine, embraces Grüner Veltliner and adopted screwcaps early on. “I hate cork,” he said. “Even my sparkling wine will be under a crown cap.” He sources grapes from Allegre Vineyard in Hood River and Underwood (Wash.) Mountain Vineyard. And in 2005, he began relying on Chukar Ridge Vineyard for the Sangiovese he uses to make his dry rosé that casts off notes of strawberry and Indian spices. Dennis and Becky Beeks’ named their vineyard in Dallesport, Wash. — just east of the Columbia Gorge AVA — for the game birds that frequent their property. “I drink rosés all winter long, and this is my favorite of all the rosés I’ve made,” he said. “It has the highest acidity and the lowest alcohol, and it’s at 0.7% sugar, but it comes off as totally dry because of that acidity.” By Thanksgiving, Cushman hopes Viento will be in its new tasting room adjacent to his vineyard on Country Club Road — across Interstate 84 from the Columbia Gorge Hotel. In the meantime, Viento Wines are poured and sold out of an annex behind the historic Gorge White House along Hood River’s Fruit Loop.

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Viento Wines, 2265 Highway 35, Hood River, OR, 541-490-6655, vientowines.com.

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M AT C H M A K E R S RECIPE Chili Marinated Calamari with Lentils and Romesco Serves 4 as an appetizer

1 pound calamari tubes and tentacles, cleaned and dried (Note: Large shrimp may be substituted for calamari) 2 tablespoons minced garlic red chili flakes 4 tablespoons Pimentón smoked paprika, portions divided salt and pepper, to taste olive oil 1 1⁄2 cups tiny green dried lentils 2 ribs of celery, finely diced 1 large carrot, finely diced 1 small onion, finely diced 1 large red bell pepper, roasted, peeled and seeded 3 plum canned tomatoes 2 cloves garlic, peeled 1 ⁄2 cup whole roasted almonds 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1. In a small mixing bowl, mix calamari with minced garlic, 2 tablespoons Pimentón, a generous pinch of red chili flakes, salt and pepper and olive oil. Allow to marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour and up to 24 hours. 2. Place lentils in a small stock pot with 6 cups of cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat and reduce to a simmer. Cook until lentils are tender yet still firm, approximately 15-20 minutes. Add a generous pinch of salt to water during final five minutes of cooking. When lentils are cooking, sauté celery, carrots and onion in olive oil until tender, but not brown. Drain lentils, add to vegetables and mix well. Set aside. 3. To make the romesco sauce, place bell pepper, tomatoes, garlic, almonds, vinegar and 2 tablespoons of pimenton in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. With blender running, drizzle in approximately 1⁄3 cup of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside. 4. Preheat a barbecue or cast-iron grill pan to high heat. Remove calamari from marinade. Cook over high heat for 1-2 minutes on each side until calamari is cooked to medium. Be careful not to overcook. Serve with lentils and romesco sauce.

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at Brian’s Pourhouse. Then in 2001, DeResta and a business partner launched Abruzzo Italian Grill. Their 36-seat restaurant closed after an eight-year run. “It was open five nights a week for dinner only, so you could get there between 12 and 1 p.m. to start preparing for dinner,” DeResta said. “For a single guy in this town, you couldn’t have it any better. Play all day and work all night.” Chuck Hinman, general manager of the Hood River Inn for more than 20 years, soon hired him as executive chef at the Riverside, and DeResta seems to appreciate the job security and a large staff that provides food service for the 400-seat conference center. “I have a family now — married with a 3-year-old daughter and an 11-year-old step-son — so I am busy from the time I wake up to the time I go to bed,” he said with a smile. However, the Riverside embraced Columbia Gorge wines years before DeResta, thanks to McCartan. “For a lot of folks, they think of the Columbia River Gorge and how it divides Oregon and Washington, but when you visit the Gorge, you realize it is a region. It’s not, ‘I’m in Oregon’ or ‘I’m in Washington.’ And it’s exciting to have a lot of great wineries to work with on both sides of the river.” Summer is the high season, and that broadens out into the outdoor deck seating. The shoulder seasons are short because of the proximity to skiing on Mount Hood. There’s

Jan McCartan

little time for DeResta or McCartan to take a breather because of the continued growth of the conference center. McCartan also moved from the East Coast and started working at Timberline Lodge in the mid 1980s. “I just happened to arrive when their wine program took off, and that’s when the light bulb turned on for me,” she said. “They were doing a lot of intensive training, and I had the privilege of doing tastings with pioneers such as Bob McRitchie (Sokol Blosser, Willamette Valley Vineyards) and David Lett (The Eyrie), who would come to Timberline and give mini-seminars.” Her path took her to Salishan, then to the Columbia Gorge, where she helped open Skamania Lodge. After five years at the resort in Stevenson, Wash., she arrived at the Hood River Inn. “I started the wine program from the ground-up, and I’ve had the privilege of management being very supportive and allowing us to grow and work with local wineries,” McCartan said. Several years ago, McCartan showed enough confidence in her wine program to begin entering Wine Press Northwest’s annual Great Northwest Wine List competition. And it’s been fascinating to see where McCartan has taken it. “I’ll change the menu and she’ll change the wine list,” DeResta said. This summer, about half of the 80 wines on the list are either locally made or made with local grapes, and 20 Columbia Gorge wineries are represented. “We have great things to work with,” she said. “The tagline for the Columbia Gorge Wine Growers Association is ‘A World of Wine in 40 miles.’ That really is true, starting with Celilo Vineyard that has Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, Gewürztraminer and Riesling on Underwood Mountain, which you can see right outside our front door. As you creep to the east, we are growing Rhône

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M AT C H M A K E R S varieties to Italian varieties.” Her attention to detail goes beyond that of most wine directors, including making sure of the proper accent mark of famed Pinot Noir producer Beaux Frères. No still wine offered is priced higher than the Leonetti Cellar 2008 Merlot, and about half of the reds come to the table for $40 or less. Arguably the best deals for diners come from the “Riverside Selection,” a remarkable house wine program with Hood River winemaker Rich Cushman. “When Mark joined our team 2 1/2 years ago, he said he wanted to have an inexpensive wine by the glass or liter as they do in Europe — something the guest can enjoy for a reasonable amount of money and something we can call our own,” McCartan said. “I immediately thought about Rich and Viento because his winery is just five miles away, he’s a Hood River native and we’ve featured his bottled wines for years.” Cushman provides two wines for Riverside — a Pinot Gris and a house red made with Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. McCartan and DeResta collaborate on the blending. A glass of each is $7. Order a half-liter and it’s $15. The charge for full liter is $27. “The wines are never bottled,” McCartan said. “They stay in the winery in storage and as we need them, Rich fills a 15-liter canister for us that is refillable and brings it to us. We push the wine through nitrogen, so there are never any bottles, no boxes and no corks. We estimated that we saved about 1,400 bottles from recyclng or the landfill just last year. We’re very excited about that.” Fruit for those wines also is local. The Pinot Gris is from Hubert Vineyard on Underwood Mountain while the reds are sourced within the Columbia Gorge American Viticultural Area (AVA). The proximity to skiing on Mount

RECIPE Pan Roasted Veal Chops with Sherry Vinegar Pan Sauce Serves 2

4-6 small Yukon gold potatoes, halved olive oil salt and pepper 4 large garlic cloves, sliced red chili flakes (optional) 1 1⁄2 cups fresh spinach leaves 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 natural bone-in veal loin chops, 12-14 ounces 1 ⁄4 cup high-quality sherry vinegar 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 2 cups of hot water Chef Mark DeResta

Hood helped the Hood River Inn weather the recent economic downturn. More important long-term growth might be in the form of wine tourism. “People are coming to the area because they’ve read about the wines, and we find folks aren’t just visiting the Columbia Gorge, but also the Yakima Valley, Red Mountain, Walla Walla and the Willamette Valley, making it a wine vacation,” she said. “They are great guests to have because they like to dine out and drink good wines.” While DeResta has transitioned from line cook to executive chef to restaurant owner into now a corporate chef, the one constant in his life other than the kitchen is being in the bike saddle. “The bike has always been my passion,” he said with a smile. “I rode to work today. I’ll ride home. I’ll ride in the rain. It doesn’t matter. I try to do a couple of ‘centuries’ — 100-mile rides — every summer, but my three- and fourhour bike rides seem to be gone. I don’t have that much time.” His collection ranges from the Italian-built Bianchi road bike and to the all-terrain Santa Cruz Nomad, but DeResta admits responsibilities of adult life keep

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1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Toss the potatoes in 2 tablespoons olive oil with a pinch of salt and dash of pepper. Lay side-up on baking sheet and roast until brown and tender, approximately 20-25 minutes. 2. Saute garlic in olive oil until just browned, then add a pinch of chili flakes, a pinch of salt and dash of pepper. Add spinach and cook until entirely wilted. Drain excess liquid. 3. Place a large heavy-bottom skillet over medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter and heat until butter begins to brown. Aggressively season both sides of chops with salt and pepper. Place chops in skillet and sear until one side is nicely browned. Turn chops and place skillet in 400° F oven for 12-14 minutes for medium doneness. 4. Remove chops and allow to rest for minimum of 10 minutes. Drain excess fat from pan. Place pan on high heat and add vinegar and mushroom stock. Reduce by half and swirl in 3 tablespoons of butter. Serve chops with pan sauce, potatoes and spinach.

him closer to the ground. “There’s a big free-ride population here and I was doing that for a while,” he said. “Every ride was with a full-face helmet and pads and stunts, but I have since gone back to my cross-country days with a smaller helmet and no pads. The restaurant and the family make you change your ways a bit.” When it came to the Match Maker

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M AT C H M A K E R S

The view from Riverside’s deck

assignment, McCartan and DeResta were tempted to spotlight Riverside Selection Pinot Gris, “but we didn’t like the thought of how having a canister shot in the magazine would look,” she said with a chuckle. They chose to serve Viento 2010 Sangiovese Rosé from Chukar Ridge Vineyard in Dallesport, Wash., with DeResta’s signature squid appetizer. “I realized the calamari dish is what I’ve done for 14 years in this town, and there are locals that come down to see me and know they will get that,” DeResta said. “It’s got this great chary flavor of the calamari on the grill, the smokiness of the paprika in the romesco and the meaty lentils. We tried a lot of wines with it, but

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that rosé really had a nice brightness to it and matched the romesco well.” When it came to the other pairing, DeResta went off the board and back into his mother’s kitchen by preparing veal with the Memaloose 2007 Idiot’s Grace Cabernet Franc from the Columbia Gorge. “We love the name and it’s grown locally in the Gorge,” McCartan said. “It’s not very fruity, and a bit subdued, while it does feature the characteristics you would expect for a Cab Franc — a little bit of an herbal nature, but pleasantly so. And the dark mocha characteristic seems to also work well with the veal chop.” The key feature, DeResta said, is the pan sauce with vinegar. “I try to keep around a little bit of what I grew up with, and that’s the way my mom always made it — pork chops with vinegar. I’ll never forget that, and I use it in a lot of other dishes, but it really stands out with the veal. I remember being a kid standing at the stove with the piece of bread sopping up the sauce. “The pairing with the Memaloose Cab Franc seemed easy, and it’s a big dish,” he continued. “There’s a big chop with a big bone in it, so it looks pretty grand. The veal is robust, and so is the wine. With the spinach, you get the earthiness that ties to the wine, and the vinegar in the dish doesn’t bother the wine at all. It’s a really nice match.” Riverside at the Best Western Plus Hood River Inn, 1108 East Marina Way, Hood River, OR, 97031, 541-386-4410, riversidehoodriver.com.ı ERIC DEGERMAN is Wine Press Northwest’s managing editor. Have a suggestion for a future Match Maker? E-mail him at edegerman@winepressnw.com. JACKIE JOHNSTON , a freelance photojournalist, is a regular contributor and the page designer for Wine Press Northwest. Her website is WineCountryPhotos.com

WINE Memaloose Wines $25 2007 Idiot’s Grace Cabernet Franc, Columbia Gorge —165 cases produced, 13% alcohol rian McCormick wondered about the direction of his life when he graduated from Dartmouth after studying philosophy and religion. In this case, mother knew best. Barbara — a chef in Carmel, Calif., — took her son to France for a week. The trip proved to be a life-altering experience for Brian, inspired by the French culture of food and wine. “He was a vegan before that,” said Rob McCormick, his father and co-owner of Memaloose Wines in Lyle, Wash. “Then he fell in love with all the organ meats — sweetbreads, kidneys, tripe. So when fell off the wagon, he fell WAY off.” Brian went on to earn a graduate degree in viticulture and enology from University of California at Davis. He trained in Alsace before working in Sonoma. “He’s very European-oriented with his approach and really wanted to get out of the heat of California, so our wines are low-alcohol and with no new oak. We are highly antiParker,” Rob McCormick said with a chuckle. By 2002, the McCormick family moved to the Columbia Gorge and began planting vineyards across the Columbia River from each in Mosier, Ore., and Lyle, Wash. Rob farms the Washington blocks, Brian those in Oregon where his wife is a family physician. The McCormicks’ five vineyards are five miles apart as the crow flies. In between is Memaloose Island. Lewis & Clark documented their time on the island, and the McCormicks used their journal entry as the label of Memaloose Wines. Their first commercial vintage of 2006 produced 250 cases. By 2010, Memaloose had jumped to 1,600 cases. Some of those white wines are available at their new tasting room just east of the Klickitat River Bridge in Lyle. The 2007 Idiot’s Grace Cabernet Franc hails from the McCormicks’ certified organic farm in Mosier and spent 16 months in French barrels aged 2-5 years. Hear the late Bob Woehler’s entertaining interview with Brian McCormick, Bobcast No. 43, at winepressnw.com/bobcast.

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Memaloose Wines, 34 State St., Lyle, WA, 360-635-2887, winesofthegorge.com.

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M AT C H M A K E R S Pan Roasted Veal Chops with Sherry Vinegar Pan Sauce is paired with Memaloose Wines 2007 Idiot’s Grace Cabernet Franc.

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WINE COUNTRY: COLUMBIA GORGE

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WINE COUNTRY: PUGET SOUND & WESTERN WASHINGTON

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WINE COUNTRY: IDAHO & SPOKANE

WINE COUNTRY: SOUTHERN OREGON

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74 Vintage Musings

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vintage musings BY BOB WOEHLER

Cuvée a legendary blend Editor’s note: Bob Woehler, the dean of Northwest wine writers, passed away Aug. 24 after writing about wine for 35 years. This is the last article he wrote.

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o call Myles Anderson a legend of Washington wines is putting it mildly. Anderson, who co-owns Walla Walla Vintners and created the Institute for Enology and Viticulture at Walla Walla Community College, has helped more than 1,600 students to embrace Washington’s burgeoning wine industry. Anderson was honored as a Legend of Washington Wine on Aug. 12 at an annual awards ceremony in the new Walter Clore Wine Center in Prosser. Anderson is in a unique position to be named a Washington wine legend. He helped create one of the earliest Walla Walla wineries and was a self-taught winemaker. But what makes him unique is he used his educational background that included a doctorate in psychology to convince himself he could put together a curriculum at Walla Walla Community College to create one of the most acclaimed enology and viticultural programs in the country. Today, he’s semi-retired from both academia and winemaking. He’s in august company, joining Bill Preston, a Columbia Basin winery owner and grape grower; John and Ann Williams and Jim and Pat Holmes, pioneer Red Mountain grape growers; Stan Clarke, winemaker, wine writer and wine educator; John Anderson, a businessman who helped form the Washington Wine Commission; Bill Powers, first to be certified as producing organic wines; and David Lake, Master of Wine and longtime winemaker for Columbia Winery of Woodinville. I hold Anderson in great esteem because of his vertical tasting of Walla Walla Vintners wines. A vertical tasting includes several vintages of the same wine. Anderson has done it in the past with Merlot and Sangiovese. Earlier this year, he offer up 11 vintages of his highly regarded Cuvée, an expressive red blend. Anderson and winery co-owner Gordy Venneni have put together vertical tastings because they are interested in the evolution of their winemaking and blending techniques. “Is it a kitchen sink approach to blending or a measured calculation to obtain a style and goal?” Anderson asked. It wasn’t easy, as Walla Walla Vintners wanted a blend that was consistent even though the blends involved different grapes and a variety of vineyards from year to year. “We are always fine tuning this blend,” Anderson said. Those of us who attended the vertical felt the fine tuning was working quite well. “We focused on vineyards sources and terroir,” Anderson said. 74

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It started with the 1996 Cuvée, which was 55 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 40 percent Merlot and 5 percent Cabernet Franc from four non-Walla Walla Valley vineyards. By the time the 2008 Cuvée was bottled, the blends came from eight vineyards that included Walla Walla Valley sources and seven different grapes. Here are my notes from the vertical: 1996 Cuvée: Still showing excellent acidity and was one of the lighter-styled red blends in the tasting. Components included vanilla and cedar with raspberry and basil flavors. Walla Walla Vintners didn’t make a cuvée in 1997 and 1998 but brought it back after customers kept requesting it. 1999 Cuvée: Bright with dark huckleberries and milk chocolate. Most of the grapes were from the Walla Walla Valley. 2000 Cuvée: Called one of the most requested of the cuvées, this one came out big, offering chocolate and cigar box aromas and dried fruit and ripe blackberries flavors. At the time, it was called a blockbuster. Alas, it’s faded a bit now. 2001 Cuvée: This is a Bordeaux-style blend, with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and a dash of Petit Verdot. Creamy caramel and chocolate along with loganberries make this a tasty treat. 2002 Cuvée: All Walla Walla fruit is blended together, including grapes from Seven Hills and Spring Valley. It has developed an exotic spice box nose, which carries through into the flavors. 2003 Gordon Grove Cuvée, Yakima Valley: A break from the tradition of past cuvées, as this is from a Prosser vineyard that is one of Walla Walla Vintners’ favorites. Made of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, it has enough chocolate characteristics to flavor vanilla ice cream. 2004 Cuvée: There are seven vineyards and five grape varieties in this blend, which includes 25 percent Cabernet Sauvignon from Cold Creek, Goose Ridge and Dwelley Jones. Vanilla bean nose, berry jam and a length finish distinguish this wine. 2005 Cuvée: Like the 2004, this contains Syrah and adds a touch of complexity with Malbec and Petit Verdot, as well as grapes from the Wahluke Slope. It’s a heavyweight with exquisite flavors of fruit and spices. 2006 Cuvée: Termed smooth and seductive when first released, this blend of seven grapes includes Carménère, an obscure Bordeaux variety mostly grown in Chile today. It offers deep color and a dark chocolate midpalate. 2007 Cuvée: This includes seven varieties from eight vineyards and includes a spicy mincemeat characteristic that would be a perfect match with Thanksgiving turkey. 2008 Cuvée: Like many of the earlier Cuvées, this one sells in the $28 range. It offers black currant aromas and flavors and finishes with rich, chocolate-covered cherries. W I N E P R E S S N W. C O M


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Wine Press Northwest Fall 2011 issue  

In the Fall 2011, we write about Carlton, the tiny Yamhill County town that has developed into the Wine Capital of Oregon. We also reveal th...

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