Thursday, October 24, 2013

An Oregon Pinot Kind of Day

Sunday was just a fantastic day, but then, almost any day tasting Oregon Pinots is, for a pinotphile like me. Donald and Terry invited us to their place for a celebration of sorts and a vertical tasting of Ghost Hill Pinot Noir from 2006, 2007, and 2008 vintages. That we also tasted wines from Maysara, Willamette Valley Vineyards, and Trisaetum just did not suck!

Donald with Maysara Sparkling Pinot Noir Rosé

Our Chef Terry

First Smile in Months! (Angry Teenager Alert)

These Clowns! Drunk and Won't Hold Still for the Photo!
On arriving, Donald poured us each a glass of a new Maysara rosé sparkling wine (100% Pinot Noir) with a few raspberries in each glass. It was hard to get a grip on the wine for the raspberries, but I enjoyed it as an aperitif. The bottle was sealed with a crown cap; commonly used before the dosage and corking, but I've not seen a wine delivered to the customer like this. It makes sense: 750ml bottles of cider and beer come this way. Why not?

We moved quickly on to an appetizer that Ann and I tag-teamed to go with Pinot. I made a mushroom pâté made from local oyster, maitake, and shiitake mushrooms with just a little dollop of black garlic aïoli on top. Ann made a loaf of her fabulous bread, flavored this time with parmesan and black pepper. These are just over-the-top incredible!

Mushroom Pâté with Black Garlic Aïoli
After the appetizers, Terry took over with three courses of fondue, cheese to start, boeuf bourguignon in the middle, and chocolate to finish.

Making the Cheese Fondue

Boeuf Bourguignon Fondue

Sauces for Meats

Peanut Butter Caramel Corn for Chocolate Fondue

Sweets for Chocolate Fondue
I'm just going to say that there were some piggies at the table. I'm not too good with dairy products and so all I did was taste the cheese and chocolate fondues, but suffice it to say that a major hurting was put on the platters of ingredients by the others at the table, Carter first among pigs.

But I  made up for it where wine was concerned. The rogue's gallery:

Ghost Hill "Bayliss-Bower Vineyard" 2006, 2007, and 2008

Trisaetum "Artist Series No. 20" 2012

Willamette Valley Vineyards "Signature Cuveé" 2012
The Ghost Hill wines were very typical of their vintages. 2008 was fairly restrained with bright acidity and red fruit. The hot 2007 vintage gave darker, more plummy fruit, and more body in a softer more plush wine. The 2006, well, typical of 2006, this blew the other wines out of the water and was one of the very best Pinots I have ever tasted. Trisaetum has always been a favorite producer and that's not a surprise given that I love the high-acid, blueberry-core wines that Ribbon Ridge fruit produces. And it sure wasn't fair tasting the WVV 2010 after all this other wine.

Guys, thank you for a delightful Sunday!

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