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A Great day in Southern Oregon
It was a cold and stormy day…well not really stormy, but certainly cold, when Sandi and I headed out to the Cowhorn Vineyard and Garden wine pickup party. We'd been looking forward to getting out to Cowhorn all week to see what food they were pairing with which wines and restocking the cellar.
But before we got there we took a chance that Cricket Hill Winery was open so we went up Little Applegate Road and found Duane Bowman pouring wine. It is always special treat for us to listen to the owner and wine maker talk about wine making and wine. Cricket Hill is unique in that they only make right bank Bordeaux style wines…mostly. I say that because the blends were excellent, but he also had a Cabernet Franc that had been in the barrel five years, that I couldn't live without (formal tasting note here, it went 94 points). An excellent visit and I learned quite a bit from Duane in that short tasting. Cricket Hill wine is worth the effort to get out to this tasting room.
We were then off to Cowhorn where we found Josh Kimball, the sales manager of Cowhorn wines, with samples of the 2010 Viognier in hand and a fairly full house of club members and treats from Amuse. Barbara and Bill were also pouring and gave talks about this part of the wine making process which was very enlightening.
Barbara's thought that “In the summer nature's activity is outside, while the yeast is dormant. Then as the vines become dormant, the winery creates an environment where the yeast starts working and the activity moves inside. “The lesson that I got was that Cowhorn sets up the environment for the yeast to work and then they let the natural yeast “unlock the secrets” of the grapes that they built up during the summer. Bill talked about the process and their new experiment of completely whole cluster fermentation. This was a lot of fun; we had good wine, good food, and learned more about wine making. These are the wine club events that really make being in a wine club enjoyable, entertaining and educational.
Coming back from Cowhorn's we stopped at Valley View Winery for a tasting. The 2006 Tempranillo was very good as well as the Claret. At this point we had done all the wine tasting we needed for one day and started thinking about dinner.
We headed back to Jacksonville to try something new.
We had not been to Gogi's for dinner so we stopped by and managed to get a table without reservations. I highly recommend making reservations, we were lucky to get seated without them. The food was excellent, we picked a 2005 E. Guigal Châteauneuf-du-Pape that was sure to match any entre' we selected. It was a delightful wine and a meal to savor.
Sandi and I looked at each other and had to toast a great day roaming the Applegate. We got to visit interesting and fun people, find wonderful wine and outstanding food. A day like that serves to remind us how fortunate we are to live in such an environment.
Another day in Southern Oregon spent with Southern Oregon Wines!
Posted By: Tim Morton @ 7:42:49 PM
The wine geeks headed out Friday to Troon Vineyards for a wonderful chat and wine tasting with Christine Collier, Marketing and Events Coordinator and owner/vintner Chris Martin. We were treated to tastings of Troon’s fine wines and found several we particularly liked: The 2009 Druid’s Fluid is very much an approachable, enjoyable table wine; the Meritage we enjoyed immensely and the Reserve Zinfandel was outstanding. We spent quite a bit of time listening to Chris and Christine and their passion for wine and for Troon. Anytime I get a chance to hear from people who do this for a living, it is an event that makes a lasting impression.
But that wasn’t the end of our adventure as we headed out from Troon and arrived at Rosella’s Winerynext. Sandy was serving on Friday and has Rosella’s usual selection of excellent wines. She treated us to some of her last Cabernet Sauvignons and some of the newer releases. The 2005 is ready to drink now and is soft, balanced with subtle complexity. I couldn’t live without the 2008 Merlot so I bought several bottles of that.
We had heard there was a new tasting room in Jacksonville behind the Umpqua tasting room, but hadn’t found it. We were certainly stopping by Herb Quady’s Tasting room to get more of Quady’s Starboard port, of which they were out. Oh the horror!, Ted through persistent hounding did determine that the Quady website in California still has stock though. But we did have a sip of their Silver medal winning Steelhead Vineyard Syrah (from the Oregon Wine Geeks Syrah tasting), as well as Quady North’s Flagship Syrah which can make you week at the knees it is so good. But we did make it to Merrill Cellars new tasting room which is tucked in behind the Umpqua tasting room and sampled some of O. Jay Merrill’s wines in what may be the “smallest tasting room in Jacksonville”. The Cotes Du Rogue name is worth a stop in of itself! Merrill Cellarsis now on the OWG website for your perusal.
Thank you again Christine and Chris for your excellent hospitality!
Wine Type: Wine
Posted By: Tim & Ted @ 2:04:13 PM
Cliff Creek Cellars Happenings!
Discover the good life in Carlton.
Join us for Carlton Quest '11,
a city-wide scavenger hunt, community celebration
and all-around good time with incredible
local food, wine, and art.
Click on Carlton Quest for more info and to buy tickets!
Second Saturday's at the Vineyard
June 26 at Cana's Feast
Our 2nd annual event showcasing varietals from Southern Spain, the South of France and the Iberian Peninsula that are actually made right here in Oregon. Many regional wineries join in the fun, which also features lunch selections from the Cucina, olive oil tasting with Fenuchi Oil and live acoustic music. Like a taste of the sunny Mediterranean in downtown Carlton, don't miss it. More info: www.SoMediterranean.com
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 8:17:38 AM
We did Roam the
Rogue yesterday , 7 couples in a limousine
and had a great Time. We started
at Agate Ridge ended at Roxy Ann. In
addition to those 2 wineries made stops and had the wine at Crater Lake
Cellars, Cliff Creek, Folin Cellars, Del Rio, and Daisy Creek-Madrone Mountain
tasting room. The Oregon Wine Geeks
wines of the day were:
Folin Cellars 2005 Reserve Tempranillo
Over all a nice day of wine, friends and fun.
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 7:44:54 AM
A small tasting run turned into an adventure!
We spent the day starting at Eden Vale who had a great flight of their Pinot Noir offerings.
There was a 2004 , a 2005 reserve and a 2006 reserve to compare. a very interesting experience.
We then ran off to Jacksonville to find that there is a new Umpqua tasting room in Jacksonville across from the Quady North Tasting room that currently features two wineries:
Bradley Vineyards and River's Edge Winery.
We had a tasting of Pinot Gris, Riesling and a selection of four Pinot Noirs from each winemaker for each of 2007 and 2008.
We then went to Jacksonville Mercantile who just happen to have a bottle of Portuguese wine called Carta (no, not Port, just a good inexpensive table wine) open that was so good, I had to buy a bottle.
In the back of the store, if you can tear yourself away from the pastas, vinegars, and spreads is a small wine rack, in that wine rack are wines from winemakers I had not heard of! A new discovery!
I had to buy a selection of these wines and some of the spreads - a particular one that is a truffle but my mouth says is caviar.
Then off to South Stage Cellars for a bit of education from Larry who is a fountain of information about wine and viticulture. A fun tasting with wonderful wines - Sandi liked the Petite Syrah, while I was drawn to the Merlot of all things.
We finished with a dinner at the Jacksonville Inn, I had the Sturgeon which was amazing, and Sandi hasn't let me have any of the baby back ribs as of this writing.
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 6:53:30 PM
This weekend’s sojourn was from the coast back to the Illinois valley. It was hard to find open tasting rooms this weekend, but having found them, we were in for a treat!
The star of the tour and an absolutely must visit is the Foris tasting room, it sits off of highway 46 (the caves highway) out of Cave Junction and from Medford, is quite a drive, but well worth it! It is just off the Holland Loop Road.
Foris has an exceptional set of fine wines. We tasted more than 14 wines – be prepared to drink a lot wine when coming to Foris, I have always found Foris’ whites to be very good, some of my favorite Oregon whites, but this tasting their reds we exceptional (see tasting notes). If you are heading over to Cave Junction a small side trip is well worth the stop.
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 7:40:02 PM
We took a small wine tasting trip around the Rogue valley yesterday, tasting wine with some friends and their out of town guests.
The highlights were, as usual Pebblestone and Folin.
Pebblestone's Viognier remains one of my favorite wines, but today they were sharing their "just in the bottle, no label yet" syrah Rose'. It was a delightful wine, full bodied and well balanced, I look for this to be an outstanding Rose' and has me thinking we might need a Rose' tasting.
Folin's tasting room was busy, but not crowded, Steve does an exemplary job of not only describing the wines but making the entire event fun!
He took us and our guests (8 in all) down into the cellar room and we all learned more about wine making. Fantastic!
The wines are outstanding and the hit of the day was Folin's self described "gateway wine" Passive Aggressive, which is an inexpensive, very approachable wine. Tasting notes soon!
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 8:07:01 AM
Todays tasting trip was a run through the Applegate from Jacksonville to Grants Pass. Tim the Oregon Wine Geeks CIO, (Chief Imbibing Officer), and myself jumped into Prius and hit the road.
Our first stop was at Longsword/Fly High Vineyards Tasting room. We had a nice flight of wines, in fact two wine were free and then the next 3 for $5 dollars, buy a bottle and the tasting is free. Both Tim and I liked the 2009 Barnstormer’s Red Tempranillo, 2008 Touché Rosé and the 2009 Accolade Semi-Sparkling Chardonnay.
Back in the electric blue hybrid and we shot down to Troon Vineyards and had a whole flight there in Troons comfortable tasting room. We both decided the best wine here was the 2008 Troon Vineyard Limited Reserve I. With a large percentage of Cabernet France this is a big bold wine, with great legs and age-ability.
The last stop of the day was Schimdt Family Vineyards with its wonderful grounds and tasting room. We had a flight of four wines today with the 2008 Merlot showing best, with a nice nose, full body a very nice merlot. The Cabernet was also quite good.
Well what a nice afternoon, had we been out and about on Thursday more tasting rooms would have been open and we would have stopped at several others.
Ted Oregon Wine Geeks Chief Imagineer.
Schmidt Family Vineyards
Posted By: Oregon Wine Geek @ 9:27:22 PM
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