On one of our last nights in Bend, we had dinner at Jackalope Grill. Our group had received an inside tip from a Bend local, suggesting that we call the restaurant in advance to order its famed elk tenderloin. We heeded this advice, and with our menu selection confirmed, we got to the restaurant early and decided to sit at the bar. Our goal was to order a bottle of wine we could enjoy a glass of while we waited for our table, and one that we could finish with the elk.
We recently took a group ski trip to Mount Bachelor, which is outside of Bend, Oregon. Sadly, we just didn’t have time to add on a side trip to the Willamette Valley, but we did manage a pit stop at Safeway to grab a couple bottles. Although it seems embarrassing to admit we settled for the grocery store in such a wine-rich region, we appreciate Safeway for its localized selections. Since Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir are two noteworthy varietals in this region, we opted for these. We grabbed a bottle of the King Estate Pinot Gris, one of my personal favorites, and Willamette Valley Whole Cluster Pinot, both 2014.
Yes, today is National Drink Wine Day. But as the cartoon so eloquently indicates, isn’t every day? So rather than talk about the “holiday,” let’s pour a glass and toast. I think tonight is going to be a Rhone sort of night. I love Rhone-style varietals. Give me a luscious GSM (Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah), and I am in my happy place. They often feature a combination of berry fruit and spice, which I think makes them great for drinking alone or with food. Each of these varietals individually has loads to offer, too.
Yeah, we know. White wines just taste better in the summer. It’s not even spring yet, so what gives? We have a basic rule around here. Whites before sunset, reds after dark. That means we’re always looking for a good white, especially an unoaked one. So, this brings us to Spain, specifically the Rίas Baixas region.
Continue reading “White is the New Red”