Written by U of O Seniors Jenna Ritter and Emily Vande Wege
If you’re planning to join the 10th annual Barrel Tour on June 16th (and as of today, there are still a handful of tickets available) , you are in for a real treat. Not only are the wines outstanding, but the stories behind them.
Noble Estate: “The One-Man Show”.
For Mark Jurasevich, wine making is his number one passion. And I can see why. His property is jaw dropping with his vineyard and tasting room surrounded by lush forests and overlooks Fern Ridge Lake. The property used to grow Noble Fir trees and after he decided to change to vines, the name stuck.
As a self-taught winemaker, he spends his days in the vines, the lab and the cellar. He even puts the labels on. Everything is hand done and done on site at this winery. He touches the product about 12 times, before the wine is released. One of Noble Estate’s top sellers is “Passion”. This sweet and sassy wine is a blend of reds and white and really is “passion in a bottle”. Mark Also stays busy attending about 50 events annually. So make sure to stop by and see him at the next one.
Brigadoon Wine Company: Come Taste in Our Living Room
Chris Shown has always been a farmer at heart. He grew up in Napa Valley helping his father establish Rutherford vineyards. Since he’s been in the wine business his whole life, he can do most of the jobs in his sleep. Matt Shown, his oldest son is the winemaker. Just recently he convinced his dad to plant a half acre of Riesling. His winning argument: “If it doesn’t work out, we can drink that much ourselves!”
Chris and his wife Sheree (a phenomenal chef) used to do all the tastings in their living room, up until last season. They recently had a tasting room built, but want to produce the same feel that tasters “are a guest in their home”. With only 500 cases produced a year this is a winery stop you won’t want to miss. Besides wine, Chris’s number one passion is sports. And what do you know… his favorite varietal is Pinot Noir.
J. Scott Cellars: “I moved here for the Pinot.”
California born and raised, Jonathan Oberlander moved to Oregon in 2004. He started making wine for Silvan Ridge and now has his own label. J. Scott Cellars released their first wine in 2005.
This one man show along with his other projects keeps this father of two very busy. He likes to “blow peoples mind” with varietals you normally don’t see in Oregon. Besides his passion for wine making he loves to sail, fish, snowboard and travel.
From Germany With Love
Rolling hills and lush grapes hold a special place in Dieter Boehm’s heart. After growing up in a wine region outside of Dresden, German, Boehm “fell in love with that landscape” and sought out something similar in Oregon when he made the move in 1978. With a degree in business and a passion for wine, Boehm decided to fuse the two to create High Pass Winery. And while he sells most of his grapes to other wineries High Pass Winery is still able to produce around 1,000 cases of wine annually. What is most unique about Boehm is that he shares his German culture with Oregon by producing German varieties that no one else has. In fact he is the only person in the United States to grow the white Huxelrebe grape used in dessert wine. When he is not producing wine Boehm enjoys traveling and finding new inspiration to incorporate into his vineyards!
Eugene Wine Cellars Wine Bar b2 – Locally Grown, Nationally Known
With unique glass lighting, swanky seating, and premium wine tasting, a visit to the B2 Wine Cellars instantly transports you from Eugene to Manhattan’s trendy SoHo district. What you may not know is that their head of sales and distribution, Bev Biehl, is a retired elementary school teacher. The transition from pupils to Pinots was drastic but when it comes down to it, Bev “loves being around people” so hosting wine tastings is her favorite part of the job. It also doesn’t hurt that her coworker is her brother, Bruce, who owns and operates a vineyard management company. Eugene Wine Cellars winery has been in business since 1999 and produces around 6000 cases a year. With 30 years experience and experience with planting over 100 wineries, Bruce clearly knows what people want from their wine. While most of his grapes come from sellers in the Willamette Valley, some grapes, like a special varietal used in the new Recess label, come from as far as Washington! Not in the Eugene area? No Worries! Eugene Wine Cellars distributes to markets and markets from Arizona and Wisconsin to Washington D.C. and Georgia so no excuse not to stock up!
Pfeiffer Vineyards – Open House
Pfeiffer Winery used to be the family sheep ranch until the French tried to buy the property in the late 70′s to grow Pinot Noir. Husband and wife duo, Robin and Danuta Pfeiffer tend to 70 acres of Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Merlot and Muscat. With the 10% they don’t sell to King Estate, they tenderly ferment, bottle, cap and label every every drop by hand. Not distributed to stores or restaurants, their elegant wines can only be purchased in their Tuscan cave tasting room, or through their wine club. Experience Robin’s private “Pinot Clinics” in a secluded grotto or their wine making dinners in their Villa home. Pfeiffer is open year round, 7 days a week and offers a stunning Water Garden in the summer or a cozy, fire-lit tasting room in the winter.