SIP McMinnville happens MARCH 10-12, 2018 in McMinnville, OR.
That’s right! On January 20th I’ll be in McMinnville, Oregon to help judge Gold, Silver, Bronze and Best-in-Show wine medalists for the 25th Annual SIP! McMinnville Wine & Food Classic.
Scheduled for March 9,10 & 11 2018 at the Evergreen Space Museum in McMinnville, OR., SIP! McMinnville features over 170 artisan wine, brews, spirits, food and crafts under one roof. Funds raised benefit McMinnville’s St. James School for children’s school programs.
“It’s a great festival,” said Rich Washburn, Vice-President of Eola Hills Wine Cellars, a long-time Classic exhibitor. “We get a lot of wine-savvy customers who come not only from across the state, but from across the country. It’s a great way to spend a day or more.”
Thrilled to share my latest feature in the January 2018 issues of Wines and Vines Magazine, profiling The Walls Vineyards in Walla, Walla, Washington.
The Walls Vineyards:
A new wine company in Walla Walla has transformed the former Whitman Cellars winery
by L. M. Archer
The Walls Vineyards, Walla Walla WA. Image courtesy The Walls Vineyards.
Microsoft attorney Mike Martin wasn’t planning to buy a winery when he and a buddy stopped for a quick round at the Wine Valley Golf Club in Walla Walla, Wash., a few years ago.
But when he hit an unexpected hole-in-one, the ensuing 19th-hole celebration left an impression. Over time, Martin’s appreciation for the region and its wines led him to purchase a vacation home in the low-key wine community nestled in southeastern Washington state. Luck and opportunity conspired again when Martin met former Long Shadows winemaker Ali Mayfield at his housewarming party, leading to the formation of a winery project christened The Walls—the name a nod to Walla Walla’s infamous state penitentiary…Read more here.
1. Meadowood Wine Writers Symposium 2017
Winning a Fellowship to the Meadowood Professional Wine Writer’s Symposium2017 (WWS17) set the tone for 2017, and introduced me to a slew of savvy industry professionals, Napa Valley winemakers, and top-notch wines.
So when the Wine Country wildfires hit later this year, it was personal.
Personal fave: Meeting up with WWS17 alum Marie Oskarsson – noted Swedish author, sommelier, and journalist – while in Gothenburg working on a pending international feature I’m doing on Swedish sommeliers.
A media pass to the 31st Annual International Pinot Noir Celebration featuring “The French Adventurers: Burgundians Making Pinot Noir in Oregon” felt more like winning the Burgundian lottery.
Kicking things off at the The Grand Seminar included commentary by – and wines from – these French luminaries:
Véronique Boss-Drouhin of Domaine Drouhin Oregon, Roserock Drouhin Oregon and Maison Joseph Drouhin.
Jacques Lardière of Résonance and Maison Louis Jadot.
Dominique Lafon of Lingua Franca and Domaine des Comtes Lafon.
Jean-Nicolas Méo of Domaine Nicolas-Jay and Domaine Méo-Camuzet.
Alexandrine Roy of Phelps Creek Vineyards and Domaine Marc Roy.
I also scored a berth at University of Pinot “Meteorology 325: The Impact of Vintage in Burgundy” Besides tasting more fabulous wine, we received a master class on Burgundy, terroir, and vintage from host Allen Meadows.
Panelists included Chisa Bize of Domaine Simon Bize et Fils, Mathilde Grivot of Domaine Jean Grivot, and Étienne de Montille of D. de Montille, who shared their personal harvest notes, including a particularly riveting account of the cataclysmic 2016 harvest.
Aside from seminars and tastings, off-campus ‘field trips’ rounded out an over-packed itinerary, including a tour of Chapter 24 Vineyards‘ Witness Tree Vineyard in Eola-Amity Hills AVA with winemaker Felipe Ramirez, a private tasting at Bells Up Winery in Chehalem Mountains AVA with Dave and Sara Specter, a sidebar with John Grochau of Grochau Cellars, and dinner with Jeff Knapp and Kitri McGuire of Visit McMinnville.
Personal fave: Profiling winemakers from emerging pinot noir regions, including New Zealand’s Paul Pujol of Prophet’s Rock and Duncan Forsyth of Mount Edward for Palate Press, and South Africa’s Pieter Ferreira of Graham Beck Wines for BKWine Magazine.
What happens when a group of talented ‘women of wine’ retreat to California’s Lake County in late September? “Ataxaria: Yoga & Meditation for Women,” brainchild of USA Today’s Lauren Mowery, proved the right combination of ‘reset’ and ‘restore’ over a long weekend of yoga, hiking, local wine tasting and farm-to-table fare, plus a lot of laughter.
Ok – so I’m still not sure how I ended up falling down the rabbit hole of the Champagne Master Level designation I earned in November, but I can verify that I did drink more champagne over the course of the rigorous program than most people drink in a lifetime. In the process, I developed a new appreciation for Champagne’s complex history, geology, production techniques, and the art of assemblage.
I also admit that, despite an unbreakable bond with Burgundy, I do consider Champagne the ‘flip side’ of Burgundy – same cépages (pinot noir, chardonnay), but different textures, and terroir. Well worth the effort.
Personal fave: Reviewing Champagne expert and author Caroline Henry’s new book Terroir Champagne – an invaluable study guide for any student of bubbles.
The view from the cramped press room overlooking the Hospices de Beaune wine auction never gets old. Ever. Nor do the official tastings, luncheon, and press conference prior to sounding the auction gavel.
During three days covering the 157th Hospices de Beaune wine auction, I rushed between obligatory press tastings and events to conduct a one-on-one interview with Domaine Hospices de Beaune managing director Ludivine Griveau for the February 2018 issue of basil + salt magazine, sneak a peak inside the Burgundian cellars of Oregon vignerons Véronique Drouhin-Boss of Maison Joseph Drouhin, Jean-Nicolas Meo of Domaine Meo-Camuzet, Comte Louis-Michel Liger-Belair of Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair, and Matthieu Gille of Domaine Gille for the February 2018 issue of Oregon Wine Press, and attended an exclusive, invitation-only preview of Three Days of Glory at Beaune’s Les Ateliers du Cinéma, a film about Burgundy by Oregon wine importer Scott Wright and filmmaker David Baker.
Bonus: You can get the inside scoop Three Days of Glory in the March 2018 issue of Oregon Wine Press prior to the international Newport Beach Film Festival premier in April 2018.
Personal fave: Getting lost in Bourgogne Hautes-Côtes de Nuits under softly setting afternoon sunlight. Though we missed our Roi Gevrey-Chambertin tasting and dinner, the magnificent views brought much solace.
So grateful you’ve been here to share 2017 with me…looking forward to more adventures in 2018!
Have your own 2017 fave event or wine? Please do share in the comment section below!
Cheers, and Best Wishes in 2018!
Copyrighted 2017-2018. binNotes | redThread™. All Rights Reserved.
The Hedonistic Taster | № 33 | Left Coast Cellars – Willamette Valley, OR.
by L.M. Archer, FWS | Bourgogne + Champagne ML
“Wine should not be regarded simply as a beverage, but as an art of living, a pleasure.” – Henri Jayer
Today’s Tasting: Left Coast Cellars – Willamette Valley Oregon
Left Coast Cellars’ Willamette Valley estate sits atop the Van Duzer Corridor, nearly 150 acres of its 350 acres planted to vines upon a steep natural amphitheater overlooking an expansive meadow and spring-fed lake. Diverse microclimates and soil types inform the wines produced here.
Wine: Left Coast Cellars Latitude 45º Pinot Noir – Willamette Valley Estate
Still in deep deadline mode, but wanted to share a bit of ‘research’ I’ve been doing for a piece I’m working on for basil + salt magazine, slated for publication in early 2018…I’ve included the producer names with the images in case you want to try these on your own at home before you read my article…so many bubbles, so little time…May your holidays be cozy, bright – and full of bubbles!
Always a treat to hear from you – please feel free to leave your comments below, or on Twitter/Instagram @binnotes.
Copyrighted 2017 L.M. Archer | binNotes. All Rights Reserved.