Every Monday, discover new wines, regions, and ways to understand this fermenting sea.
Munching Vidal Blanc on Keuka Lake, New York
Check here over the next few weeks, I am touring Vancouver Island’s wines, ciders, and beer.
Wife, kid, and I (sounds like a musical) have driven a day to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. And yes, they grow enough grapes here to claim a Vancouver Island appellation or VQA. Sure, vines only started in 1992, today boasting 432 planted acres and 32 wineries (even Oregon’s tiny Willamette Valley claims 19,000 acres and over 500 wineries). But what that youth and extremely small scale means, however, is focus: most wineries are estate only, often organic, and handled by families from vineyard to bottle. Continue reading
Can Oregon wine catch Champagne’s coattails? Our climate is too warm, our soil too rich, and our winemakers too impatient, but our grapes are Pinot and Chardonnay. So, why not try?
Well, most Oregon bubbly from Argyle to Argyle tastes nice, dry, but a bit fruity and simple. That sexy, nutty, chalky, dry, autolytic character that Champagne can have seemed elusive. Continue reading
Be honest with yourself: it has been a long day. You deserve a drink. But the last thing you want is more work. It can be interesting, sure. But complexity, tannins, grip, and food pairings sound horrid.
Let me whisk you to Italy. Specifically, Tuscany: land of rolling hills, Chianti, Renaissance palazzi, and rustic food. But leave the sweat, art, dust, gelato, and tourists of Firenze (aka Florence) behind. Head northeast, into the mountains, and you will find Pomino DOC: a few miles from where I use to excavate an Etruscan temple. Continue reading
Finally, Fall comes to the Northwest. With it, like leaves on a tree, I shed my need for crisp, light, whites and reds. It is not cold yet for Port mind you. But a small glass of something sweet and complex to slowly sip away the cool evenings is in order. Continue reading
For all intents and purposes, it is basically Fall. Actually Halloween as my wife started decorating in August. But with temperatures dropping and rain falling, I want a white wine with some meat on its bones. Tired of the same old Chardonnay? Then you have come to the right post.
Let us fly to the crown of Italy, 30 minutes from Switzerland, where the valley of Valtellina slices open a couple Alps. Continue reading