Wine Roots - a poem by Kim Stafford

July 26, 2018 by

Written for Russ Rosner and Susan Sokol Blosser
- by Oregon Poet Laureate Kim Stafford

Wine Roots
Rain, too, has a vintage—aged
for eons in the sea, then lifted
from salt waves for long migration
to this hill, these furrows, this earth.
And wine has roots in the family
of the makers, their long learning
peppered with instructive errors
and the pluck to try again.
Wine has roots in weather, the right
rain at the right time, temperature
rising, cresting, and the sun-heart
beating down, wheeling toward solstice.
And wine delves deep into the bread
of earth to sip and savor centuries, all
the fallen years, the legacy and perfection
of loss and love made crisp and dry.
Sip, remember, wonder, and apprehend
the falling, delving, rising—deep wisdom
born of struggle, affection, and persistence.
Then taste this flavored song.

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Bloom! Or Flowering!

June 14, 2018 by

Have you ever seen bloom in the vineyard? Bloom (or flowering as the Kiwis like to call it) is a critical time in the vineyard and winery. In the above picture you can see that each berry is “flowering”. Grapes are hermaphroditic, or they have both male and female reproductive parts so they don’t need to be pollinated like cherries or almonds. This process makes the vineyard smell amazing. Kinda of like an elderberry blossom. Kinda sweet and kinda of tart smelling. This time of year also means we can set our clock to when harvest will begin; 100 days post bloom. So we know that around September 11th the pinot noir will start coming in!!!


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Recipe: Cedar Plank Mushrooms

May 17, 2018 by

When Chef Henry goes foraging we are always excited to see what treasures he finds. On a recent excursion he brought back beautiful morels which he roasted on a cedar plank and topped with a savory garnish. Pour a glass of pinot noir for a perfect pairing. Cheers!    

Soak cedar plank for one to two hours in water.
Pre-heat oven to 425°

1lb wild mushrooms, washed (substitute your favorite type when wild is unavailable)
1 1/2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper to taste

  1. Mix above ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Place soaked cedar planks on a cookie sheet pan.
  3. Roast mushrooms on cedar planks, stirring occasionally, until tender and slightly crispy. Approximately 20-35 minutes.
While mushrooms are cooking prep your garnish.

Garnish Ingredients:
1 small shallot, tiny diced
1 sprig thyme, leaves only
2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon fresh parsley, rough chop
Lemon to squeeze

  1. In a small sauté pan, melt butter, sweat shallots and thyme. About 3 minutes.
  2. When mushrooms are finished , toss with shallot mix, add parsley and fresh squeezed lemon to taste. Adjust salt and pepper as needed.

 Suggested wine pairing: 2015 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir

As we expand our culinary program we are excited to offer experiences like last month's Reserve Pairing and our ongoing Farm & Forage experience. To learn more about Farm & Forage and to book your seat, click here
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Recipe: Cornmeal Crackers

March 15, 2018 by

In last month’s email newsletter Chef Henry shared four of his current wine choices along with a recipe for cornmeal crackers, a diverse base for all of your favorite toppings.
These decadent crackers also served as the base for smoked duck breast and Ayer’s Creek preserves as part of Chef's Flight in our Tasting Room. We are such a fan of these golden rounds that we wanted to share the recipe with you.

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal (white or yellow)
¼ tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt
3 tbl sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
2oz butter, melted and cooled


1. Set oven to 375°
2. Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl.
3. In a separate bowl whisk the buttermilk and butter.
4. Add the wet to dry and gently mix with a spoon or spatula until wet dough forms.
5. Wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to overnight.
6. Roll to 1/8 of an inch on a floured surface and cut with favorite cookie cutter or squares.
7. Bake on a nonstick baking sheet for approximately 15 minutes or until golden brown, remember that the crackers will continue to cook for a few minutes afterward. Allow to cool completely before storing them in an airtight container.
Suggested wine pairings: 2014 Sparkling Rosé of Pinot Noir, 2016 Dundee Hills Chardonnay, 2014 Old Vineyard Block Pinot Noir, and 2013 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir.

As we expand our culinary program we are excited to offer experiences like last month's Chef's Flight and our ongoing Farm & Forage experience. To learn more about Farm & Forage and to book your seat, click here
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Recipe: Lamb Meatballs with Harissa Sauce

January 8, 2018 by

These flavorful meatballs are the epitome of comfort food, paired perfectly with our 2014 Big Tree Block Estate Pinot Noir, which has bold flavors of black cherry, licorice and blackberry balanced by smooth tannins. 

Cooking with Chef Henry: Lamb Meatballs with Harissa Sauce

Ingredients - Lamb Meatballs
1 pound ground lamb
½ yellow onion, small dice
1 carrot, small dice
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup bread crumbs
2 tablespoons parsley, minced
1 tablespoon vinegar, sherry or red wine
1 egg
3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & pepper to taste
Harissa Sauce
1 cup Guajillos chile, toasted and seeded
½ cup carrots, medium dice, cooked
½ cup beets, medium dice, cooked
½ tablespoon cumin seed, toasted
½ tablespoon coriander seed, toasted
¼ tablespoon caraway seed, toasted
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon salt
Puree all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Adjust seasonings as necessary.
  1. Preheat oven to 300°. In a small pot saute the onion, carrot and garlic over medium-low heat about 6 minutes until tender. Cool completely.
  2. In a medium sized mixing bowl, mix the lamb and remaining ingredients with your hands until the mixture starts to become a little sticky.
  3. Take a small amount of the meatball mixture and saute on medium heat until cooked. About 2-3 minutes. This is just to taste for seasoning. Adjust salt/pepper/vinegar as necessary.
  4. Portion into 16 equal sized balls. Over medium heat in a large saute pan, brown the balls evenly in two batches. Be gentle, the balls will be fragile, but will firm up after cooking.
  5. Place the balls and all of the sauce in an oven proof pan (approximately 8”x10”) and cover with foil.
  6. Cook for about 40 minutes or until cooked through.
  7. Serve with black rice or in a pita as a sandwich. Makes four servings.
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