April 01, 2014
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Wine News Briefs

Embossed, Branded and Bottled Up

As bottling continues to clatter on across the state, Oregon wineries are pumped to unveil their latest wines to eager customers. For those in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, they are excited to unveil their bottles, too.

Wines from Yamhill-Carlton have already begun appearing on store shelves and restaurant tables in proprietary bottles embossed with the logo and name of the Willamette Valley sub-AVA. 

“This is one of the first AVA-specific bottles in the U.S., and to our knowledge, the first of any major Pinot Noir appellation in the world,” said Ken Wright of Ken Wright Cellars. 

The new custom bottle displays the name “Yamhill-Carlton” in raised letters on the bottle neck, along with the trademarked Yamhill-Carlton logo. The logo includes a stylized grapevine with a swirling conch-shaped root system, homage to the marine sedimentary formations that underlie the AVA and help define the characteristics of the region’s wines.

The first release of the bottle was manufactured by Veralia in Seattle and distributed by Tricor-Braun of Vancouver, Wash. It is a traditional thick-neck Burgundy-style cork-finish bottle, but at 660 grams, it is relatively light for a premium Pinot Noir bottle. The local production and lesser weight make the new bottle more environmentally friendly than many currently in use.

“Lots of wine bottles today are imported either from Europe, China or Mexico. But the Yamhill-Carlton Winegrowers Association was committed to finding a domestically produced solution, and we’re thrilled that Verallia, our domestic manufacturer, rose to the challenge,” said Gillian Brennan of Tricor-Braun.

Bottles from the pilot production are being used by Asilda Winery, Ghost Hill Cellars, Ken Wright Cellars, Lazy River Vineyard, Roots Wine Co., Stag Hollow Wines and WildAire Cellars. When the bottle is in full production, it will be available to all members of Yamhill-Carlton Winegrowers Association.


GOTG 2014

The 44th Annual Greatest of the Grape was held on March 1 at Seven Feathers Casino Resort in Canyonville. The annual event is presented every year by the Umpqua Valley Winegrowers Association.

Twenty-eight Southern Oregon wineries participated in the professionally judged competition. The following awards were granted at the celebration:

PRO JUDGES’ WINE AWARDS

PLATINUM: Triple Oak 2011 Tempranillo

GOLD:
Anindor Vineyards 2012 Gewürztraminer
Chateau Nonchalant 2011 Syrah
Henry Estate Winery 2011 White Riesling
Foris 2011 Maple Ranch Pinot Noir
Misty Oaks Vineyard 2009 Cabernet Franc
Paul O’Brien 2012 Pinot Noir
Spangler 2011 Claret

SILVER:
Brandborg 2012 Gewürztraminer
Bradley Vineyards 2012 Riesling
HillCrest Winery & Distillery 2012 LePig
Agate Ridge 2011 Primitivo
Season Cellars 2011 Malbec
Wild Rose 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon

PRO JUDGES’ FOOD AWARDS: 14 restaurants & caterers participated
Winner: Blackbird Bar & Grill (Roseburg): Curried Pork & Pear Skewers with Bacon/Pecan Aioli
Runner-Up: The Twisted Cork (Grants Pass): Grilled Polenta with Mushroom Ragu.

PEOPLE’S CHOICE:

2014 GREATEST OF THE GRAPE
Becker Vineyard 2012 Pinot Noir

BEST WHITE WINE
Winner: Brandborg 2012 Gewürztraminer
Runner-Up: Melrose 2012 Chardonnay

BEST RED WINE
Winner: Abacela 2009 Tempranillo Reserve
Runner-Up: Spangler 2011 Claret

BEST PAIRING
Winner: Spangler Vineyards 2011 Claret with Blackbird Bar & Grill
Runners-Up: (Tie): Brandborg 2012 Gewürztraminer with The Vine Restaurant; and Melrose 2012 Chardonnay with The Vine Restaurant

DECORATOR’S CHOICE “BEST BOOTH”
Winner: Seven Feathers Casino Resort
Runner-Up: The Twisted Cork from Grants Pass


Elk Cove Gets Goodrich

Elk Cove Vineyards has purchased Goodrich Road Vineyard, a 69-acre property planted with 21 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in Yamhill.

Located in the heart of the Yamhill-Carlton AVA (American Viticultural Area), Goodrich Vineyard was planted in 2007 with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in high-density format. The property boasts the exact same marine sediment (Willakenzie) soil as Elk Cove’s Mount Richmond property, also located in Yamhill. Goodrich Road Vineyard is situated just a few miles from Elk Cove’s original Estate Vineyard in Gaston.

“Elk Cove always looks out for great opportunities to secure grapes from top vineyard sites in great AVAs in the Northern Willamette Valley,” said Elk Cove winemaker Adam Campbell. The chance to procure 21 acres of immaculately farmed Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vines in an area we knew was top-notch was too much to pass up. Top reserve quality and single-vineyard Pinot Noirs have been made from this site by our friends at Raptor Ridge, Soter, King Estate and many others.”


SIP! Awards

The 21st annual McMinnville Wine & Food Classic, known as SIP!, was held March 7–9 at the Evergreen Space Museum. Attendees enjoyed more than 170 vendors, including wineries, distillers, food, art and information vendors, mixed with live music.

A new group of wines were revealed as the winners in the event’s annual wine competition. A blind judging of 195 wines from 51 wineries was evaluated by a panel including Bill Breitzmann, Steven DeShaw, Jack Czarnecki, Cynthia Gierok, Toni Ketrenos, Gary Kilmer, Patrick McElligott, Devey Michaels, Sean Privette, Jacques Rendu and OWP editor Hilary Berg.

BEST OF SHOW:
Barking Frog 2011 Elerding Vineyard Barbera

GOLD:
Hawkins 2011 Columbia Valley Caldera Red\
K & M 2011 Quail Run Vineyard Grenache \
Noble Estate 2012 Semi-Sparkling Muscat
Silver Falls 2012 Marechal Foch
Sweet Cheeks 2012 Riesling
TeSoAria 2012 Barbera 

SILVER:
Ancient Cellars 2009 “Terebinth” Cab Franc
Ankeny Vineyard NV Marechal Foch
Armonéa 2012 Summit Estate Pinot Noir
Barking Frog 2009 Crawford Cab Sauvignon
Barking Frog 2012 Tempranillo
Blakeslee Estate 2012 Rosé of Pinot Noir
Capitello 2011 “Dolcino” Gerwürztraminer
Cottonwood 2012 Estate Müller-Thurgau
Cottonwood 2011 Winter’s Hill Pinot Noir
Eola Hills 2008 Lodi Petite Sirah
Girardet 2011 Old Vine Baco Noir
K&M Wines 2010 Alchemy Cuvée Pinot Noir
Left Coast Cellars 2012 Cali’s Cuvée Pinot Noir\
Lumos 2010 Temperance Hill Pinot Noir
Noble Estate 2012 Oregon Reserve Syrah
Noble Estate 2012 Passion
Pheasant Valley 2010 Primitivo
Purple Cow 2009 Estate Tempranillo
Silver Falls 2012 Oregon Pinot Noir
Terra Vina 2012 Cabernet Franc
Terra Vina 2010 Columbia Valley Sangiovese
TeSoAria Vineyard & Winery 2012 Dolcetto
Trinity Vineyard 2012 Grenache

BRONZE:
Abbey Creek 2011 “Mon–Thurs” Pinot Noir
Abbey Creek 2012 “Date Night” Pinot Noir
Cottonwood 2007 “Raya Jade” Syrah
Eola Hills Wine Cellars 2012 Vin d’ Or
Namasté Vineyards 2008 “Legacy” Syrah
Noble Estate 2012 Cuvée Pinot Noir
Pudding River 2012 Willamette V. Chardonnay
Sweet Earth 2012 Estate Pinot Noir
Willamette V. Vineyards 2011 Est. Chardonnay
Zerba Cellars 2009 Merlot