Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Oregon Wine Country

Yesterday, Mom and Ben came and picked me up, and we set out for Oregon Wine Country.  It doesn't take long to get to if you live in the Portland area - there are tons of vineyards and wineries.  When I was a kid, I don't remember there being *any*, but it's a booming business now, and it's easy to see why.  We went out to Newberg and Dundee to check out a few of the local wineries.

I tend to despise whatever alcoholic beverage I'm tasting, and I've never been a wine person.  In addition, this area is known for its pinot noirs, which is not Mom's type of wine - she was going for the pinot gris some of the wineries make.  Therefore, wherever we went, we just shared one wine tasting flight.

Before we started sampling wine, we had a nice lunch at Red Hills Market.  If you ever go there, you have got to try the roasted filberts* with bacon and rosemary.  It's delicious, and just so very 'Oregon'.


First, we went to Sokol Blosser, where we tasted a couple of white wines, including a chardonnay that I was shocked to find was to my liking, and several pinots (gris and noir).  Mom and Ben were after the 2012 pinot gris, which they'd just had a bottle of recently, and they got the very last two bottles.  Good timing, I'd say.  The tasting room at Sokol Blosser has a great atmosphere, very Pacific Northwest, and the staff were approachable and friendly.  We enjoyed our tasting there.

Vineyards at Sokol Blosser

Next, we went and found Evening Land's tasting room, where we sampled really good locally made wines out of grapes from Oregon, California, and France.  After that, it was off to Panther Creek Cellars.  We just tried their pinot gris, which was fabulous.  Our last stop was Argyle Winery.  We ended our wine tasting with their sparkling wine flight.  I have to say, the Knudsen Brut that can't be bought in stores was excellent.

I wish I could tell you all about what distinguished the various wines, and what I liked about the ones I liked, but I'm no wine expert.  The Sokol Blosser chardonnay was mellow and the Argyle Winery Knudsen Brut was tangy, but that's about all I can tell you.

Now in possession of all the wine we'll drink in a year (or more), we made our way to Oregon City to have dinner at the Stillhouse Scottish Pub.  I had a traditional beef pasty, while Mom and Ben went for fish and chips.  We shared sticky toffee pudding for desert.  The food was great, and the atmosphere was pretty awesome, too.

Beef pasty with coleslaw

All in all, while wine tasting would not be my activity of choice on a normal occasion, we had a really great day.  I may even do it again next year!

*Filberts is the local word for hazelnuts.

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