Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Couple of Oregon Whites

Hey kids, have you been drinking your white wine? It's not just for summer any more! The more I explore and experience wine the more white wine I drink. I'll admit it, I would have been embarassed to order a sauvignon blanc at an after work happy hour event a mere two years ago. Now I realize that I just know something that all those gin and tonic drinkers over there don't know. I can't verbalize exactly what it is that I know, but I feel superior none the less.

I believe there is so much diversity in white wines you could spend years just appreciating the differences between chardonnay, viognier, albarino, torrontes, semillon, well you know the list. So I'm excited to find new white wines that I like and can recommend.

I've talked about Oregon pinot noir on this site several times. I even declared Willamette Valley Vineyards 2008 Founder's Reserve Pinot Noir to be the outright winner of the #PinotNoir twitter tasting smackdown recently. But I haven't talked about any white wines from Oregon. That changes now:

Willamette Valley Vineyard 2008 Pinot Gris - This pale straw colored wine gives off lemon citrus and pear in the nose. Mingling in the aromas is also a bit of cotton candy sweetness and a touch of white flower petals. The wine tastes of dry citrus and pineapple, with more floral and mineral notes across the middle and a crisp pear finish. Consumed both alone and with food, this is a nice food wine, with a taste profile that offers just enough complexity to keep it interesting. A very respectable wine at $15. Score: 3/5

Willamette Valley Vineyard 2008 Riesling - If you read me you know I'm a sucker for riesling, and this one does not disappoint. Rated as medium sweet on the International Riesling Foundation taste profile scale, this pale yellow wine with a slight green tinge offers up apple, peach, and something that distinctly reminds me of the apricot/pineapple preserves my grandma used to make for me as a kid. There is a touch of wet stone and flint going on as well, which is a riesling trait that I can not get enough of. Drinking the wine I got ripe pineapple up front, a tantalizing bit of minerally citrus across the mid-palette, and an orange juice and limey finish with bright acidity. This wine was hands down delicious, it was sweet but not cloying, acidic but not sharp. This might be one of my best buys of the year, at only $12 from the winery (even less elsewhere) I think this wine is amazing. Score: 4/5

So I used to be embarassed to drink much white wine, and I probably used to be embarassed to suggest a wine that is slightly sweet, but now I know better. These wines will bring joy to those who sit back and partake.

These wines were received as media samples, with the intent to review.


  1. Scott,

    Thanks for writing about your enjoyment of our wines! Always flattering to read such nice things.

    Willamette Valley Vineyards