This was designed to be a live “speed tasting” of wines. It’s kind of hard to do without an internet connection! We’ll taste twelve wines in an hours and write about them as we’re hearing about them, sniffing and tasting them. 31 wineries to pour… ready, set… go!
First up, Amity Vineyards, Willamette Valley, Amity Hills AVA. 2009 Estate Dry Riesling, Amity Vineyard.Very pale, pretty nose. 91 cases produced, some of the oldest vines in Oregon. Certified sustainable. Bone dry, lingering finish. High acidity balanced by higher alcohol. Retails for $20. Very nice wine, varietally true, only available at the winery. Meant to be paired with shellfish or white fish. Good way to start the event.
2nd wine is from Brooks Winery 2009 Willamette Valley Riesling, called Ara, named after a constellation. 50% estate fruit, 300 case production. Slightly higher residual sugar than first wine. Easy to tell it’s a Riesling. Soft nose, good fruit on the palate, retails for $25.
Francis Ford Coppola 2010 Votre Santé Chardonnay, half oak, half stainless steel. Coppola’s grandmother used to toast “a votre santé”. French for to your health. $12? Are you serious. This is a wonderful Chard, balanced, great finish. Wish I had a salmon filet. 13.5% alcohol.
4th wine Alexana Winery 2011 Pinot Gris, 12.1% alcohol. Great minerality, green apple jumps out! $26 retail. I want some Thai food to go with this. Lovely mouthfeel. Great bright acids. I think it’s a bit pricey, but such a nice wine.
Johan Vineyards from Willamette Valley. 2009 Reserve Chardonnay. Vineyards 3 – 4 degrees cooler than rest of valley leads to higher acid, lower alcohol. Aged sur lees 18 months on oak, another 7 months in bottle. Certified organic and biodegradable. Very soft nose, elegant on the palate, but the finish doesn’t linger. I get a touch of anise. $32.
Halfway point. Benton Lane Winery 2011 Pinot Gris. $17 retail. Exclusively produced Pinot Noir before, just added Pinot Gris to their lineup. Whole cluster pressed and cool fermented. Mineral evident but not overwhelming. Like the mouthfeel. Good value. Benton Lane wines available in all 50 states.
Maryhill Winery 2011 Rosé of Sangiovese. Family owned and operated winery. 2011 not yet released. Gorgeous color. Picked up best of show Rosé in Santa Rosa. Retail about $10. Tasted recently at a tweet up. Loved it then, love it now. Bargain wine of the day… $9.99. Fruit driven but not sweet. I admit, I love this wine! Maryhill works with 24 varietals, grow 18 of them.
Note… this has been live, connection came on just before we started. Dr. Loosen is in the house! 2011 Red Slate Riesling. Mosel Valley, Germany. 100% Riesling. Very low R.S. Again a pretty nose. $15, I would buy this in a blink. Would be a very food friendly wine.
Argentinean wine, the 2011 Recuerdo Torrontés. High altitude vines, 3200 ‘, grapes have to struggle. Torrontés is a favorite of mine and this is a good one. Elegant perfumey nose, good flavor, $15.
Portuguese wine, 2011 Semillon and Viosinho. Herdade de Esparã0. Haven’t tasted Viosinho before, but it definitely jumps out of the glass. More on the palate than on the nose. $12.99. A tough one to describe. I like it, I think.
OK, that’s a wrap. Hope you had half as much fun as I did.
Editor’s note. If you do the math you’ll see we tasted ten not twelve wines.