News Briefs for August 2009
Uncorked in Forest Grove
This summer, check out the latest in Oregon’s wine events, Forest Grove Uncorked. Presented by the Forest Grove City Club, the inaugural event will be held Aug. 15 from 4–9 p.m. on the town’s historic Main Street.
Forest Grove Uncorked will include area wines from Washington County and along the Sip 47 wine trail into northern Yamhill County, local microbrews and gourmet food from nearby restaurants and caterers. It will also feature live music, a raffle and awards honoring the top food, wine and beer.
“We are excited to share the area’s growing selection of award-winning quality wine” said Scott Behren, owner of The Wine Behren and one of the organizers. “The dining selection is growing with new downtown eateries offering regional foods such as Thai, British, Middle Eastern, Chinese, authentic Italian coffee and desserts, in addition to our American classics.”
Live music performances include Feppos Trio and Andy Harrison Band.
The cost is $10 per person (must be 21) and includes a logo wine glass. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Forest Grove Family Resource Center. Sponsors include: Forest Grove Light & Power, John L. Scott Market Center, CM & Sons, Rick and Debbie Skaggs, Tip Top Spa & Boutique, Wine Behren, Custom Care Physical Therapy and Sundial Specialty Baking & Events.
The event will be held in conjunction with Hulaman, Oregon’s Hawaiian- style triathlon and half marathon event. A field of 500 is expected to compete in the Aug. 16 competition that will end in downtown Forest Grove following the 1.2 mile swim at Henry Hagg Lake, a challenging 56-mile bike ride through Washington County wine country and a 13.1 mile run through Forest Grove farmland. Aug. 15, there will be a Hula Kids Triathlon on the campus of Pacific University.
Forest Grove Uncorked
Location: Main Street, Downtown
Date: Saturday, Aug. 15
Time: 4–9 p.m.
Lemelson Opens Up
Lemelson Vineyards, located just outside the town of Carlton in the North Willamette Valley, has opened its doors for wine tastings and tours five days a week. Previously open only by appointment, the winery also plans to offer guests tasting flights for $10.
“The wine selection may not be the same from day to day,” said Managing Owner Eric Lemelson, who completed the winery in time for the 1999 harvest. “We may pour our dry Riesling one day and our Pinot Gris the next, together with our Estate Pinot Noirs. Because we own seven different vineyards with different soil types, the wines we select will offer our guests a unique tasting experience each time they visit.”
The tasting room overlooks a breathtaking vista of the Yamhill Valley and the organically farmed estate vineyard next door. Visitors to the winery often comment about the tasting room’s beautiful countertop, made from sodalite, a rare royal blue and white streaked mineral. Entering the tasting room, visitors can peek into the fermentation area, featuring Lemelson’s one-of-a-kind mobile grape-sorting platform known as “The Enterprise.” In cool weather, guests can warm themselves in front of the tasting room’s massive Tulikivi soapstone fireplace.
Lemelson Vineyards is located at 12020 N.E. Stag Hollow Road, Carlton and is open 11 a.m.–4 p.m., Thursday–Monday. For more information, go to www.lemelsonvineyards.com .
Take a Bite
From Hood River to Jacksonville and up and down the Willamette, Rogue and Umpqua valleys, 38 wineries will be nestled under the cool shade of trees at the 2009 Bite of Oregon, presented by Reser’s Fine Foods. The festival’s MIX Wine Pavilion will give wine enthusiasts face time with the winemakers and taste a wide variety of award-winning wines in a relaxed atmosphere in Portland’s Waterfront Park, Aug. 7–9.
On July 12 at Pacific Northwest Wine Club in Tigard, winners of the 2009 Bite of Oregon Wine Competition were announced. Led by Dan Paynter, PNWC president, a panel of judges—winemakers, wine stewards, wine media—tasted 133 wines from 28 wineries in six separate categories. Stoller Vineyards 2006 Estate Grown Dundee Hills Pinot Noir won Best in Show as well as Best Pinot Noir. The following are the rest of the gold medal winners: Best Pinot Gris: Arcane Cellars 2008 Willamette Valley Reserve; Best Pinot Noir: Stoller Vineyards 2006 Dundee Hills Estate Grown; Best Chardonnay: David Hill 2006 Estate Reserve, Willamette Valley; Best Sweet: Witness Tree 2007 Sweet Signé, Estate Bottled; Best Other Red: Spangler Vineyards 2006 Southern Oregon Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve; Best Other White: Nobel Estate Vineyard 2007 Willamette Valley Riesling.
Entry to the MIX Wine Pavilion is included with admission to The Bite. Visitors can purchase wine by the glass, bottle and/or by the case directly from the wineries. Bite commemorative wine glasses are also available to purchase. The event is produced by Special Olympics Oregon with all net proceeds benefiting their programs, which provide sports training and athletic competition for persons with developmental disabilities.
For more details about this event or for a complete list of participating wineries, go to www.biteoforegon.com .
This summer marks the debut of Willamette Shakespeare, a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing classical theatre to the Willamette Valley’s wine country. Performances will take place on outdoor stages at three distinct settings in Yamhill County: Stoller Vineyards in Dayton, Ed Grenfell Park in McMinnville and Ewing Young Park in Newberg.
For their inaugural performance, they have selected Shakespeare’s popular comedy “As You Like It,” an unconventional love story that follows the trials and tribulations of the characters in their quest for love. Set in the 1930s Great Depression era, this production will transport this classic tale to an all-too-familiar chapter in modern American history.
All performances are family friendly, free of charge and open to all ages. Picnic foods will likely be available for purchase and blankets are encouraged.
Fri. & Sat.: 7 p.m. • Sun.: 2 p.m.
Aug. 7–9: Stoller Vineyards, Dayton
Aug. 14–16: Ed Grenfell Park, McMinnville
Aug. 21–23: Ewing Young Park, Newberg
Sundance Wine Cellars, a south Eugene fixture, has moved across Alder Alley into a larger storefront that accommodates even more wine. 2441 Hilyard Street, Eugene; www.orwines.com.
Grand Vines in Salem will now host a guest winery each Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m. A representative from the winery will be on hand to pour their wines and share information about the wines and winery. Check their website for a schedule of visiting wineries. The wine tasting is complimentary. 195 High St. N.E., Salem; www.grandvines.com .
“150 Days” Heats Up
As the summer heats up, so does the 150 Days of Wine in the Willamette Valley. Enjoy sun-drenched days and starlit nights, while sipping your way through the Valley at several wine events.
The Willamette Valley Wineries Association’s 150 Days of Wine in the Willamette Valley is a series of wine events and special activities taking place through September celebrating our state’s 150th birthday in partnership with Oregon 150.
Visit www.willamettewines.com for more details or turn to page 32 for August’s events (marked with a “150.”)
An Affair to Remember
On Aug. 28, the Oregon State Fair will host Celebration Oregon, the awards ceremony and tasting event for the all-Oregon wine competition.
The evening pays tribute to award-winning professional and amateur Oregon wineries and their wines based on the wine competitions held in July. Held annually on the first night of the fair, this popular annual event is marking its 30th year.
In addition to attending the awards ceremony, patrons can taste more than 200 different Oregon wines, plus sample gourmet delights by Oregon chefs. There will also be a silent auction to benefit the Make-a-Wish Foundation of Oregon.
In honor of Oregon’s 150th birthday, the first 500 Celebration Oregon ticket buyers ($45; includes fair admission) will also receive a ticket to “Oregon! Oregon! 2009,” which debuts that evening at 8 p.m.
This rousing revival of the 1959 musical comedy, written by Grammy Award-winning radio personality Stan Freberg to celebrate the 100th birthday of Oregon, has been updated by a team of Oregonians, including Thomas Lauderdale of Pink Martini, “Chariots of Fire” conductor Harry Rabinowitz, PICA Flash Choir’s Sarah Dougher and Pat Janowski, Metro Council President David Bragdon and the writers of Livewire! It features music by Pink Martini and a performance by the Oregon National Guard’s 234th Army Band.
Location: State Fairgrounds; 2330 17th Street N.E., Salem
Date: Saturday, Aug. 28
Time: 5–8 p.m.
Tickets: $45; 800-992-8499 or www.ticketswest.com