Monday, October 20, 2008

Wine Tasting

On Saturday, Lee's sister, Myrna with hubby, Doug, came up to go wine tasting with us. Lee was the designated driver, since he's not that into wine.

We have, I think, about 18 wineries within an hour's drive of us, and we'd gotten a brochure with a passport on it. If you visit 5 wineries & get the passport stamped, you are entered into a drawing for an "Umpqua Wine Cellar" (whoohoo!).

Our first stop was at Spangler Vineyards, about 10 minutes away. There were still some grapes hanging on the vines. They offered three different wines to taste, in generous samples, and I liked the sweeter one best.

Then we headed to Abacela Winery. This is one of the bigger ones in the area, and they have gone international now. There was a tasting fee here - 5 wines for $5. I think they were pretty generous with the tasting samples as well. They didn't have any sweet wines really.

Next up was Girardet Winery, and they also had a $5 tasting fee, generous samples, and I think we tried 6 or 7 wines there. They had a GREAT wine. It was $40 for a little half-sized bottle, and it was like wine syrup! And the Gewurztraminer was nice too :)

All the samples were pretty good-sized, so after sampling at Girardet, we took advantage of their little picnic area and ate the nice lunch Myrna had packed. There was carmelized onion fritatta, hummus, artisan bread, and Central Point "Oregonzola" cheese, plus some little chocolates. Super yummy, and exactly what we needed at that point of the day!

Our next stop was Palotai Winery. They like to grow the vines really close to the little road there! There were people still picking in the fields as well. They only charged $2 for tasting, and the servings were small, but there were over 10 wines to sample! Palotai recently won our "Greatest of the Grape" wine competition here, and it was recommended by the guy at Girardet so we could taste Hungarian wine. This photo is pretty much the tasting room, so we were packed in a bit with a couple other groups :)

Our last vineyard was Reustle/Prayer Rock. They have a gorgeous setting, and they are expanding. It looked like they were set up for weddings and other outdoor gatherings there. Really nice. Their tasting room was set up more like a restaurant, and there were little hors d'oeuvres - the honey-cheese & avocado bruschetta were my faves. Of course, the other one had chicken in it... Anyway, again $5 for 5 wines. I like the sweet one best. They don't have a lot of photos of the grounds on their website - mostly the owners & photos of the wine, so I didn't post any of those.

Thank you very much to Myrna and Doug for a very nice outing! We really enjoyed a little time for us to do something more adult-oriented.

Sorry I still don't have a working camera, or there would have been pictures of more stuff... But you get the idea.

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