What did you sample during Oregon Wine Month?
Did you sip your way through May?
I hope so, as May was Oregon Wine Month. If you didn't get to participate that's OK. The month of May was just the kick off — you've got a summer ahead of you where you can fill your wine glass with educational events, fun tastings and fine dinners.
During May I visited a number of wineries including some old favorites and some new-to-me venues. Here's a quick rundown of some of my great Willamette Valley wine discoveries that you might want to investigate yourself.
Founded by David and Ginny Adelsheim in 1971, Adelsheim Vineyard is one of the pioneer winemakers of the Willamette Valley.
You might remember the stunning Adelsheim wine label drawings; Ginny created them, each featuring a different strong woman who was important to the Adelsheim family.
Jack and Lynn Loacker became partners with the Adelsheims in 1994, and in 2017 purchased full interest in the company.
I visited with Ginny at a wine tasting last fall and she said it felt odd not to be involved in harvest. David is still involved as a director and consultant for Adelsheim, and Joth Ricci serves as president and CEO.
Joth has an impressive resume in the beverage world, and most recently served as president at Stumptown Coffee Roasters. He has turned his passion to wine, and as much as I love coffee I am grateful he is focusing on wines now.
Under the creative eye of Sam Schmitt, Adelsheim's vice president of education, Adelsheim has stepped up its educational offerings for visitors to the winery.
They are hosting a series of Saturday Seminars focusing on a specific topic each week, plus lunch and dinner events.
Don't miss the interactive displays in the tasting room. They have created visual displays that show elevation of each vineyard, and other details that explain the terroir of the wines. It's fascinating and will elevate your wine tasting experience.
And the wines — don't forget them! Be sure to sample Adelsheim's Great Whites — Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc including the Staking Claim Chardonnay and Caitlin's Reserve Chardonnay. I'm loving everything Pinot noir rosé so be sure to try the 2017 Willamette Valley Rosé. It is perfect!
Adelsheim Vineyard is located at 16800 NE Calkins Lane in Newberg. It is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Call 503-538-3652 for details.
Gretchen Boock, who Joe Dobbes named as CEO at Dobbes Family Estate upon his retirement last year, has some delightful news to share this spring: We can now buy Wine by Joe Pinot gris and
rosé in cans, which makes it ever so easy to take along on hikes and outings this summer.
Wine by Joe is a division of Dobbes Family Estate, and provides high quality Oregon wines at affordable prices. I love the cans and the wine you find in them. Each can contains two servings, just enough to enjoy during a concert in the park or while watching a cornhole match.
If you have visited Dobbes you probably have met Gretchen. She was the first hire at Dobbes Family Estate, straight out of college.
A native Oregonian, she studied Spanish and agri-business at Oregon State, and spent summers working with her parents' construction business.
The company built a number of wineries and tasting rooms, and Gretchen thought she might like to get involved with the wine industry. She sent out a series of inquiries to nearby wineries and Joe replied. Except for a short stint, she's been with him ever since and has done every job in the winery.
Gretchen says her family has long been involved in agriculture, growing hops, strawberries and broccoli, so food, wine and family are in her roots.
"And wine brings it all together," she said.
Offering canned wines is an example of the innovative spirit Joe Dobbes built into the business. The cans have natural appeal to a younger drinker, and are a big benefit for the environment. They are easy to recycle and make shipping across the nation easy.
Wine by Joe canned wines are debuting across the United States this spring. We can buy them locally at Safeway Stores at 401 A Ave. and 17779 Lower Boones Ferry Road in Lake Oswego, 22000 Salamo Road in West Linn and 8255 S.W. Wilsonville Road in Wilsonville.
Other Wine by Joe wines available include Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in bottles. It's really good Oregon wine.
Visit winebyjoe.com to learn more or stop by 240 SE 5th St. in Dundee.
Put Tony Rynders Child's Play wines at the top of your must-try list. Child's Play is the "playful younger sister of Tendril Wine Cellars" and the labels feature artwork created by Tony's daughters.
Where Tendril can be described as an all-encompassing pursuit representing Rynders' resume in liquid form, Child's Play gives him the opportunity to focus solely on the pleasure and fun of winemaking in the Pacific Northwest.
Under the Child's Play label you will find a 2017 Pinot Chardonnay, which is a blend of 70 percent Chardonnay and 30 percent White Pinot Noir, and is the only still blend in the U.S. It is delightful, as is the 2017 Rosé of Pinot Noir.
The 2015 Pinot Noir is aged 10 months in primarily neutral French oak barrels. Be sure to sample the 2015 Zinfandel, created for Tony's wife Diane, who loves zinfandel. It is special!
These wines are all exciting and refreshing. I'll share more on other wines I sampled during Oregon Wine Month next week.
In the meantime download a free Oregon Wine Touring Guide at oregonwine.org.
The recipe shared today will pair nicely with an Adelsheim Great Wine or any of the rosés.
Like Gretchen says, wine brings it all together. So share some with family and friends.
Bon Appetit! Make eating an adventure!
Grilled Spicy Citrus Chicken Thighs
with Corn and Green Onions
Makes 8 servings
1 cup fresh lime juice
2/3 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce
2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper
16 large chicken thighs with skin and bones (about 6 pounds)
16 green onions
8 ears of corn, husked
Whisk first 7 ingredients in medium bowl. Season marinade with salt and pepper. Place chicken thighs in large resealable plastic bag. Place green onions and corn in extra-large resealable plastic bag. Divide marinade equally between bags; seal bags, turning to coat. Chill chicken, corn, and green onions 4 hours, turning bags occasionally.
Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Remove chicken and vegetables from marinade; discard marinade. Grill chicken until charred and juices run clear when pierced with knife, turning occasionally and rearranging on grill for even cooking, about 25 minutes. Grill green onions and corn until charred on all sides, about 6 minutes for green onions and 13 minutes for corn. Transfer chicken, green onions, and corn to platter and serve.
Recipe courtesy of Epicurious.com.
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.