Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

Wine Blog

Wine knowledge

Dundee: The Center of Northern Willamette Valley!

  Last week I wrote about McMinnville, the largest town in the northern Willamette Valley and the furthest from Portland. As we drive north from McMinnville back to Portland along Route 99, the next town with many amenities is Dundee, the town closest to Dundee Hills sub AVA (American Viticultural Area). Dundee is a great…

Read More »

December 1, 2022

Oregon’s Wine Reputation Continues to Grow!

The History Since I am relatively new to the Willamette Valley, I spend my down time researching the history of the Oregon wine industry so I can better educate our tour guests about this unique wine region. I just finished reading “Pinot Girl” by Anne Maria Ponzi, published in 2020. Upon reading, I was surprised…

Read More »

October 26, 2022

The Story of Supertasters, the PTC Gene, and Bold Reds

Did you ever wonder why some people prefer bitter tastes and some shy away? I’m talking about grapefruit, arugula, dark chocolate, black coffee, tea and of course tannic (young and thick skinned) red wines. Well, there is a scientific reason for this preference: it depends on a gene which detects Phenylthiocarbamide (PTC), a bitter, harmless…

Read More »

July 15, 2022

Weather and the Willamette Valley in 2022

  ** New Offer: Win $20 off your next wine tour! Suggest a Willamette Valley winemaker or winery you want to learn more about and if I choose them for a future blog post I will credit you $20 on a wine tour!**   On the heels of 2020 smoke issues and 2021 record heat…

Read More »

June 16, 2022

What’s the Deal with Sparkling Wine Vs Champagne?

  Who doesn’t love a cold glass of bubbly? Well I exaggerate. Some folks, like my son who doesn’t like anything carbonated including soda and beer(!), do not seek out sparkling wine. If you are one of these people, this blog post is not for you. Moving on to the sparkling fans, here is an…

Read More »

May 26, 2022

Give New Wines a Chance!

    There are thousands of wine grapes and  wines in production around the world. Each one is different and in a skilled winemaker’s hands the same grape from the same plot of land can be different from the vintage before and after. The lesson? Try every wine you can find to taste and judge…

Read More »

May 16, 2022

Unusual Red Wines of the Willamette Valley (Part 2)

Last week, based on a reader suggestion, I started researching oddball grapes grown in the Willamette Valley. I found too many to include in one post so I concentrated on white grapes. This week I am finishing up with red grapes. Read and be amazed at the variety of red grapes that local vintners can…

Read More »

April 20, 2022

Unusual White Wines of the Willamette Valley (Part 1)

Last week I wrote about the king of Willamette Valley grapes: Pinot Noir. This week, we’re discussing some lesser known grapes a few pioneering vineyards have embraced: Müller Thurgau and Grüner Veltliner, Auxerrois. *Geek warning!* You may never run across these grapes in your wine journey if you’re not looking for them but for us…

Read More »

April 13, 2022

Sherry, Port, Madeira, Marsala: Wine or Spirit?

Have you ever been confused about port wine? What exactly is it and how does it differ from “regular” wine? When do you serve it and how long does it last once opened? Let’s start in Portugal, namesake for Port and city of Oporto. Port wine is a separate category of wine called fortified wine…

Read More »

March 30, 2022

Wine Skins 101

By popular demand (aka my daughter, the millennial) this blog post will be about grapes and wine types. Talking to her, I realized not everyone knows what makes a wine a white, red, rosé, etc. I wrote this blog post to help people understand how the color of a wine is determined. More specifically, I…

Read More »

March 24, 2022