(this is a second installment of my experience at the Wine Bloggers Conference this past August 2012 in Portland, Oregon. You can read my first post here.)
Thursday night was an early night to bed. On Friday, the Wine Bloggers in Portland woke up to a clear, hot sunny day similar to the day before.
After breakfast, I went downstairs to mingle. On Thursday, sometime during check-in, I had seen Nannette wearing a tiara. I knew instinctively it was her birthday, and heartily wished her a happy day. When I saw her Friday morning, I informed her that that day was my birthday, and asked if I may wear the tiara that day?
As I set the tiara on my head, and began touring the registration and tradeshow area, the day began to look much more interesting.
(Pardon the blurred photo, I was a new iPhone user!)
The Argentine Food & Wine pairing was for the most part done well. Some of the pairings weren’t spot on, but most of the food was delicious, and the hosts and hostesses of the event were wonderful. A couple performing Latin tango during the lunch added visual and aural elements to the already sensory-filled brunch.
Things happened quickly on Friday, and Randall Grahms’ keynote began and ended in a whirl.
The whites and roses Live Wine Blogging was my first experience at rapid tasting (and spitting!), and since I only had my iPhone, I tweeted my impressions:
- A memorable wine was the Alexana Pinot Gris from Dundee Hills. The wine was bright, clean, lemony. The winery is higher end and only available to a few states.
- The Johan Chardonnay (Willamette) was aged for 18 months in French oak, and bottled unfiltered. High acid and delicious, I noted it would pair well with certain cheeses and fruit.
- Benton Lane came to Table 13 and served a Pinot Gris. Benton Lane is known for it’s pinot noir. The pinot gris would stand up well to salads, pear fruit, and salmon.
- Merryhill Winery, a family owned and operated winery, poured a Rose of Sangiovese that had Best of Show in Sonoma County. This rose screamed picnic as I envisioned cured meats and cheese on a red-and-white checked tablecloth on sunny Mt. Tamalpais.
- An Argentine Recuerdo Torrontes had great acid. I was thrilled to learn it was available in California.
In summary, I loved the sauvignon blancs, Pepi (origin?) and Decibel (NZ, Hawks Bay) that were crisp, not too cold, and acid bouncing off the tongue.
The tasting ended with a Gloria Ferrer Va De Vi which would be a stellar picnic wine in case rose´ wasn’t desired.
Within a half hour after the whites and roses live wine blogging, the buses in front of the hotel began to fill with passengers going to mysterious destinations. I vacillated between going and not going, and finally jumped on Bus 8 where there were only two remaining seats left in the entire caravan. I think I made the best decision.
We sat in heavy traffic for a short time, and then got off the freeway onto a little country highway. We traveled for about an hour, maybe a little more, when we were stopped by a police break in the road. What was going on?
Lo and behold, it was a planned stop by the Carlton Police. Welcome to Carlton, Oregon! First stop, Carlos & Julian!
(…. to be continued….)