Donkey Delivery: Vinarija Dingač Vinogorje Pelješac 2009, Pelješac

Well, today I am not really sure where to start. Maybe with a word of advice: If you intend to buy relatively exotic wines from not so wine-popular countries it is always a good idea to know a few words of the local language. In today’s case the word “polusuho“ would have been pretty handy! Meaning: off-dry! Whatever, this little cute donkey wine comes from the very south of Dalmatia. More precisely from Pelješko vinogorje. As far as I could find out this wine is supposed to be the little and lighter brother of the famous Dingač (a 100% Mali Plavac). So that is enough, let’s keep it short:


On the Oregon Trail Part 2: Westrey Wine Company Oracle Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007, Dundee Hills

Dundee Hills Pinot Noir! I guess this is my first single vineyard Pinot from there. Guys, I am afraid to say (well, not really afraid, more intriguingly surprised!): I really like Oregon Pinot Noir! The more bottles I had the better, more chequered and more intriguing those wines got. Again an absolutely convincing wine! Compared to the Evesham Wood Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2008 a totally different style and vintage. But first things first! Today’s wine is the single vineyard Pinot Noir Oracle Vineyard from the Westrey Wine Company (sounds like a large cooperation, but isn’t, just 22 acres) in McMinnville. The company was established in 1993 by Amy Wesselman and David Autrey. The Oracle Vineyard in Dundee Hills AVA is with more than 30 years of age the oldest vineyard of the winery. This wine from 2007 is a blend of 24% 30-year-old own-rooted (!) Pommard clones, 70% of younger Dijon clones 777 and 6% Dijon clones 115. The vineyard faces due south and sits at an average of about 650 feet and is L.I.V.E. (Low Input Viticulture and Enology Inc.) certified. The fermentation took place in 1500 litre open-top tanks and was aged in mixed, neutral intended, oak.


Back to the Eastern Danube: La Sapata Feteasca Regala 2011, Colinele Dobrogei IG

Today’s wine was made from a classical Danube Delta Hills varietal named Feteasca Regala. Presumably a natural hybrid of Kövérszölö and Fetească Alba (White Maiden Grape). The Sapata project is thought to be a Romanian-Italian-Collaboration under the supervision of Di Filippo Azienda Agraria from Umbria. The Romanian estate in Colinele Dobrogei practises organic and biodynamic agriculture. Like the back label taught me: even with “horses for working the soil”. Nice one! Let’s check it out.


Pinot Again...? Miolo Pinot Noir Fortaleza do Seival 2007, Fronteira

Today’s Pinot was produced by Miolo Vinicola. One of the big wine producers of Brazil. This specific wine comes from Fronteira region alongside the border to Uruguay. More precisely: from Fronteira in Rio Grande do Sul. The Sevial winery is about 120 ha large and concentrates on the cultivation of French and Portuguese varietals. Today’s wine was produced from manual harvested grapes (Wow!) and was aged in used French and American barrels.


On the Oregon Trail Part 1: Evesham Wood Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2008, Willamette Valley

I guess I had the desire to explore North-Western Pinots for quite a while. Unfortunately I wasn’t really able to motivate myself for this challenging task. Well, I really got big problems, right? Not able to motivate myself to drink some damn good wine! Okay, the proliferation in Europe isn’t that good. Excuse enough ;-). Whatever, a couple of weeks ago I discovered a pretty passionate, sometimes really funny, real, maybe a bit amateurish, but surly competent and definitely not over-posed video-blog called “Wine is Serious Business” which intrigued (or infected) me enough to tackle this extremely daring and longing challenge ;-)

I would like to start my Oregon Pinot exploration with an entry-level wine from Evesham Wood Vineyard in Salem. The 2008 Pinot Noir Willamette Valley! Evesham Wood was founded by Russ and Mary Raney in 1986. So, I guess it is one of the older wineries in Willamette Valley. As far as I know the professional wine business started in the late 1960s. Until today, the winery cultivates (resp. purchases from) only 5 hectares of Pinot Noir (various Dijon clones and a few older Pommard clones), Chardonnay (108 clones), Pinot Gris (Colmar clones), Gewurztraminer, the rare Rieselaner (!) and Grüner Veltliner. They all grow on volcanic basalt soils in the Eola Amity Hills. Today’s Pinot is a selection of various vineyards from the outstanding vintage 2008. So, let’s hope I can recollect my thoughts on this wine correctly, because dorky Oh Dae-su has lost his tasting notes!


Καλησπέρα Ελλάδα: Kir-Yianni Estate Ramnista 2006, Naoussa

It might get a little bit embarrassing on this self-referentially described “adventurous” wine blog. Yeah, right ...! Again I felt the urge to get inspired by a wine which was presented on Hendrik Thoma’s “Wein am Limit” a little while ago. Sometimes I like to get persuaded to give varietals or specific wine styles once and maybe for all another try. Another try for wines which did not impress me all too much in the past. You may feel free to interpret this description in a more straight forward sense: as wines which tremendously pissed me off. Thanks to “Wein am Limit” I gave Xinomavro, the classic varietal from Naoussa, another chance to conquer my palate. So far I had a few Xinomavro based wines and I always been “reserved” about these expiriences. Probably due to their bitchin acid, violent tannin structure and questionable concentration. However, the Kir-Yianni Ramnista 2006 (100% Xinomavro, from selected blocks in Yianakohori vineyard, aged for 14 months in French and American oak and partly fermented in open-top tanks) presented itself to me as a very decent, very balanced (although still a bit young), almost uniquely tasting and enjoyable representative for a Xinomavro based wine!