Blog Posts matching TASTING:
Oh What A Night!
Friday, May 14th 2010 by Michael Kelly Brown, Director of Consumer Sales
Last Thursday I had the pleasure of attending one of the nicest wine dinners I have ever been a part of. The team at Tina’s Restaurant in Dundee, Oregon did an exceptional job of creating a wine centric menu that not only highlighted Sokol Blosser wines but also showed the kitchen's exceptional skill.
We started with house made crackers topped with a pacific salmon spread paired with our 2009 Rosé of Pinot Noir. While we mingled in the front of the restaurant and got to know each other this little hors d'oeuvres and wine pairing helped ease us into the event.
When we sat, we were greeted with a plate of freshly picked radishes and house made speck (a type of smoked prosciutto). Shortly after they began pouring our Estate Pinot Gris from 2008, and halibut arrived served over braised fennel and topped with pesto. The Pinot Gris was just coming into its prime and tasted spectacular with the fish.
On to my favorite pairing of the night! Our 1999 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir matched perfectly with a roasted quail. This was a match made in heaven. A perfectly aged wine with a gorgeously prepared dish. The short ribs that came next let us know our journey was far from over. A light smokiness and hint of citrus made the tender meat a stage on which our wines performed. The 2007 Goosepen Block and the 2005 Dundee Hills Pinots were a fun juxtaposition of vintages to compare side by side.
Topping off the night was an olive oil cake and vintage 2002 White Riesling Dessert Wine - it was a perfect end to a perfect night. Thank you to our friends at Tina's for the wonderful evening!
London International Wine Fair 2010
Thursday, May 20th 2010 by
Alison Sokol Blosser, 2nd Generation Winegrower and Co-President of Sokol Blosser Winery, is taking things international this week at the London International Wine Fair! Check out her journey in pictures below.
Alison takes a break from pouring wine at the Oregon pavillion for a moment during the fair.
The Oregon pavillion highlights wineries from different growing regions in the state.
The Washington pavillion is right next door, helping to educate European wine consumers about the Pacific Northwest.
Alison teaches a Masterclass on the unique qualities of Oregon wines and the Oregon Certified Sustainable Wine program.
Oregon wines at Whole Foods in Kensington - Oregon (and Sokol Blosser) is well represented!
Check back soon for more pictures!
Rodent Patrol Visits the Tasting Room
Tuesday, May 25th 2010 by
Yes, yesterday afternoon we received a rare visit from our feral vineyard cats! Stopping by the Tasting Room for a quick break after a busy afternoon of catching voles in the vineyard, these snuggly predators were a welcome sight. Thanks for your hard work, Filbert and Baby Girl!
Come One, Come All - 20th Annual Memorial Weekend Summer Kickoff!
Friday, May 28th 2010 by
You’re invited! We're kicking off summer May 29-31 from 10am to 4pm each day. Come taste newly released estate wines, enjoy a delicious picnic lunch from Phresh Organic Catering (at additional cost), and groove to fun and funky music. Come rain or shine, because we'll be under the Big Tent! And don't forget the 20% case discounts!
$15 tasting fee includes tastes of our current releases. Cellar Club members get in free and can bring three guests. See you there!
Michael Brown discusses Sokol Blosser wines with visiting Cellar Club members.
The team from Phresh Organic Catering is gearing up for lunch!
Let's hope the weather this weekend will be as sunny and beautiful as it was in 2009 (above). Good thing we have the Big Tent, so we can have just as much fun while staying dry!
Evolution Pairs Well with (Nearly) Everything!
Monday, June 7th 2010 by
I was recently challenged at Whole Foods to try Evolution wine and they claimed that it goes with everything including a peanut butter and banana sandwich. Well, it's true. Here is the proof!
- Jason Horne, Arlington, TX
This is Dedication!
Friday, June 11th 2010 by
Nino and Patricia Marchetti can truly say they are dedicated fans of Sokol Blosser! After purchasing (and enjoying) two wine lots, including some rare vintage Sokol Blosser wines and large format bottles, at last year's Cellar Club Harvest Party, the Marchettis kept the bottles and created this tower in memory of their Sokol Blosser experience:
Cheers, Marchetti family!
Oregon Pinot Camp Weekend
Monday, July 5th 2010 by
This holiday weekend has been amazing – and just enough time to recover from all the fun, food, great wine and general shenanigans that went on last weekend at Oregon Pinot Camp!
We love OPC – the invitation-only, exclusive, trade and hospitality only weekend when attendees can run loose in Oregon wine country having a great time and learning what makes this beautiful wine region stand out. All of us at Sokol Blosser were incredibly excited to host the opening welcome event here at the Winery. The walk-through vineyard was transformed as we hosted 200 campers and visitors for a fabulous evening of Oregon wine tasting and delicious food. And that was only the beginning of the weekend… see below for more fun photos of the weekend!
To all of our new friends from OPC – thank you for everything, and cheers!
Sokol Blosser is transformed to host all of our OPC campers.
Alex and Alison Sokol Blosser welcome guests to Sokol Blosser.
Friend Casey Brogon gives a big thumbs up to the Salmon Bake Dinner!
Alex Sokol Blosser enjoys some rare vintage wines at the Dundee Hills Vault tasting.
Winemaker’s Huddle at the Dundee Hills Vault tasting: Veronique Drouhin of Domaine Drouhin Oregon, Don Lange of Lange, of Anna Matingzer of Archery Summit, Jason Lett of Eyrie Vineyards, and Russ Rosner of Sokol Blosser Winery.
#PinotNoir Twitter Tasting
Tuesday, July 6th 2010 by
Sokol Blosser Winery is excited to be a part of #PinotNoir - a Twitter celebration of the world's most expressive yet persnickety wine grape with a competition between favorite Pinot-producing regions!
DATE: July 15, 2010
TIME: 5-7 PM PACIFIC - 8-10 PM EASTERN
This event is FREE and all you need to participate is wine and Twitter (to create a Twitter profile of your own, visit www.twitter.com). Simply let us know your thoughts in a 140 character Tweet and add #PinotNoir.
But, wait! There's a twist... what region makes the best Pinot you've ever tasted? To vote via your tweets simply add another 2-character hashtag after #PinotNoir and we'll count the votes so that region gets bragging rights for the night!
#WV - Willamette Valley, Oregon
#NV - Napa Valley, CA
#RR - Russian River Valley, CA
#CN - Carneros, CA
#SB - Santa Barbara, CA
#SN - Sonoma Coast, CA
#MN - Mendocino, CA
#SC - Santa Cruz, CA
#SLH - Santa Lucia Highlands
#BU - Burgundy, FR
#NZ - New Zealand
#xx - Add your own!
For example, if you are drinking a Pinot from Willamette Valley, simply tag the end of your tweets with: #PinotNoir #WV
If you’re drinking a Pinot Noir from Sokol Blosser, be sure to let us know by adding @sokolblosser to your Tweet! See you online!
3rd Annual Grape 'n Grill BBQ - This Saturday!
Tuesday, July 13 2010 by
Ready for some old fashioned good times this summer? Bring your 10-gallon hat and join the Sokol Blosser family for summer fun, complimentary handmade gourmet popsicles from Portland’s Sol Pops, BBQ fare from Phresh Organic Catering, and of course, wine tasting! We're also happy to welcome the GTM String Band who will be providing us with some excellent live tunes the whole day.
The good times will roll from 11am-4pm on Saturday, July 17. We’ll look forward to seeing you there!
BBBQ (the extra B is for blog!)
Thursday, July 22nd 2010 by
Something that people probably wouldn’t guess about me on first glance is that I am a sucker for anything really cheesy (cheese itself is another blog post altogether). I have a (not-so) secret love for silly movies, karaoke, 80’s theme parties, velvet paintings of Elvis….you get the idea! I think this is why I get along so well with our cellar club manager, Jeff, who shares in my not-so-secret love for the cheesy stuff (he won me over in the first week I met him by dropping a really well-timed DeBarge reference). It’s also why the Grape & Grill BBQ is one of my favorite events of the year. He doesn’t just throw your average “sit around with a drink and a burger in your backyard” kind of barbeque. Instead, it’s a Western extravaganza replete with live bluegrass band and bales of hay. You heard me, bales of hay! Jeff really goes all out.
I showed up to work Saturday morning to find him running around our courtyard putting the finishing touches on everything, donning a bandana and a western shirt. For solidarity with Jeff in all our western cheesiness, I had “borrowed” (read: taken without asking) a plaid shirt from my roommate and threw on my cowboy boots for good measure. I was excited that I got to pour at the Pinot Noir tent by the crush pad, because I had a perfect view of the whole courtyard, including the GTM String Band, a bluegrass trio (of which one of the players is a Club member) rocking out some great classic folk numbers and a few bluegrassified modern tunes.
The weather couldn’t have been better: high 70s and sunny, I started to wish we could have the tastings outside every nice weekend! With the wine and music flowing and the sun shining, everyone was in great spirits, staking out every available picnic table, chair, or bale for a seat. By the late afternoon, the whole courtyard was filled with people enjoying the wine, the tunes, and the delicious Carlton Farms barbecued pork from Phresh Organic Catering. Better yet, everyone was indulging in their cheesy side by wearing the complimentary bandanas we were handing out in various creative styles.
To put the event over the top, Noah and his crew from SOL Pops in Portland were right there in the courtyard with us serving up amazing organic hand-crafted popsicles. Thankfully, they were kind enough to sweetly tolerate my many repeat visits to their charming blue popsicle cart so I could decide on which was the best flavor (my pick for the afternoon: Strawberry Basil). If it weren’t so much fun to chat with guests about our wines (the definite favorite of the day was our soon-to-be-sold-out 2009 Estate Rosé of Pinot Noir) I would have seriously considered a career change as a popsicle taste tester…
The GTM String Band
Ales Sokol Blosser and Noah from Sol Pops
Kendra pours Meditrina for visitors
Alison Sokol Blosser and friends
Organic Wine Review - 2008 Dundee Hills Pinot Gris
Friday, July 23rd 2010 by
Alex Sokol Blosser Visits Japan
Thursday, September 9th 2010 by Alex Sokol Blosser, Co-President, Winemaker & Second Generation Winegrower
We love visiting Japan! I fly across the Pacific to visit our friends and partners in Osaka and Tokyo once or twice every year. Here are some pictures of my current visit:
Mr. Miyagawa and me at the Orca annual tasting in Tokyo.
I hosted a wine dinner at restaurant Dazzle in the Ginza part of Tokyo. The dinner included an amazing five course meal with a highlight of duck with a sweet red mizo glaze. 75 people attended and we all had a great time! The awesome staff a Dazzle made it all happen.
Chicago Gourmet 2010
Monday, September 27th 2010 by
Thanks to everyone who came to see us in Chicago this weekend at the Chicago Gourmet event at Millennium Park, sponsored by Bon Appétit magazine! Check out the event in pictures below:
The Chicago Gourmet event entrance!
Alison Sokol Blosser pouring her wines at Chicago Gourmet.
The tent where Sokol Blosser wines were being poured. Beautiful!
Organic Wine Review - 2009 Estate Rosé of Pinot Noir
Thursday, September 30th 2010 by
Thanks to our friends at Organic Wine Review for this awesome segment on our 2009 Estate Rosé of Pinot Noir!
2008 Pinot Noir Release Party
Friday, November 19th 2010 by
Join us in our Barrel Cellar this Saturday and Sunday, 10am-4pm each day, for our biggest Pinot Noir tasting of the year! It will be your first opportunity to taste and purchase our entire 2008 line up of Pinot Noirs, including our 2008 Dundee Hills, 2008 Estate Cuveé, 2008 Big Tree, 2008 Peach Tree and 2008 Goosepen Pinot Noir - all of which scored 90-93 points in Wine Spectator and Wine Advocate.
Cellar Club Members and up to three guests taste for free. Regular entry cost is $20.
We'll look forward to seeing you here!
For more information, please contact: Sokol Blosser Tasting Room firstname.lastname@example.org 503-864-2282
Thanksgiving Weekend Celebration!
Monday, November 29th 2010 by
Fun was had, photos were taken, and a lot of wine was enjoyed at our annual Thanksgiving Weekend Celebration! Thanks to everyone who visited us and brought their friends and family to Oregon wine country this last weekend. In case you weren't able to join us, below are a few pictures from the event (held in our Winery space)! Don't miss out on the holiday savings - check out our Holiday wine gift sets, specially priced for gift giving. Cheers!
Our holiday lit Winery (just a week ago we were making wine in here)!
Christina pours a full lineup of estate wines for guests.
There's a lot of tasty treats under this tree!
Visit Our Tasting Room This Holiday!
Wednesday, December 22nd 2010 by
Need something fun to do with the fam that're in town for the holidays? Visit our Tasting Room! We're open 10am-4pm daily (closed on Christmas Day and New Years Day). We'll look forward to seeing you here!
It's Going Down at Stumptown
Tuesday, January 18th 2011 by
To say that the Sokol Blosser staff “likes” coffee is a pretty big understatement.
It might be a disappointment to hear that we don’t all sip on Pinot Noir at our desks during the work day (I too, lament this fact), but in reality we need as much coffee as (or more than) the average human can consume to continue to keep the winery running smoothly and ensure that our wine can be found in stores and restaurants the world over and that bright, smiling faces greet you in the tasting room year-round.
It’s not uncommon for our small group to drain three restaurant-sized carafes of coffee on any given day and when the coffee supply runs low I can sometimes receive up to several emails addressing this—ranging from a gentle reminder to reorder, or to thinly-veiled panic depending on how many bags remain in our kitchen. Little did I realize how important my job as Tasting Room Supervisor is—I’m in charge of keeping this place highly caffeinated—a serious responsibility to bear.
So when it came time to think of a destination for our annual company field trip it made perfect sense to spend the day hanging out at Stumptown, the now-legendary roaster with a collection of coffee shops in Portland and beyond. Yes, I did just say “annual company field trip” and “Stumptown” in the same sentence. Yes, I do love where I work and yes you can be jealous.
We arrived at Stumptown’s original café on SE Division & 45th and were quickly whisked away to a back room after undoubtedly giving the barista a silent heart attack as seventeen winery employees funneled into the small space. The back room of the café is home to two very important pieces of the Stumptown operation: their bean storage facility and their cupping room. Our hosts, Skip and Jim started with a brief overview of Stumptown’s history and how they go about sourcing their beans. For such a small company, it was awe-inspiring to hear how their pursuit for perfect beans has had such an impact on improving the quality of coffee throughout the industry and on the health of the worldwide market, benefiting everyone from growers in tucked-away jungles to the average stateside coffee sipper. Suddenly, paying 10-12 bucks a pound for the stuff seemed like a paltry sum for how much effort it took to deliver those beans to our hands.
The cupping room was another experience altogether. Cupping is the procedure they use to evaluate the quality and profile of the beans they receive, and it’s a crazy-technical process of tasting and smelling with lots of steps. It made wine evaluation seem pretty straightforward and easy by comparison, but the similarities between coffee and wine were definitely striking—from discussing different varietal characteristics of coffees and their growing seasons and regional terrior, to their unique flavor and aroma profiles and how the coffee temperature affects the impression of what’s in your cup. Though I think we were all a little secretly intimidated (at least I was), the Stumptown guys were excited that we could all speak the same geeky language about what we smelled and tasted.
Then we all got a bit out of our geeky depth when they started explaining what kind of equipment was needed to brew a proper cup. I felt the sense of collective shame as we pictured our industrial coffee pot and $15 pulse grinder in the winery kitchen as they impressed upon the importance of a quality grinder, appropriately heated water, and minimal techno-garbage involved in your brewing process to achieve a sublime coffee experience. Our dreams of running an underground Stumptown café in our winery were dashed. But just as drinking quality Pinot Noir makes it difficult to swig convenience store wine, we all realized our coffee appreciation had changed and with our palates now attuned to the good stuff there’s no going back. Our silent thoughts on the bus ride back had to be the same: can we work an Italian espresso machine and fancy burr grinder into next year’s budget?! With our brains powered by Stumptown, I think we can make it happen.
Pinot Gris & Seafood Weekend
Thursday, January 27th 2011 by
Aw, shucks! Beat the bad weather and join the team at Sokol Blosser on either Saturday or Sunday, January 29 or 30 from 10am-4pm each day for a fun-filled, delicious weekend celebrating Oregon Pinot Gris and local oysters!
Watch our shucking team at our custom raw bar as they prepare fresh oysters for you to pair with a full flight of Sokol Blosser Pinot Gris, including several hard to find vintages. Don't enjoy your oysters straight from the shell? Not to worry - we'll be grilling them as well for a full variety of flavor.
We'll look forward to seeing you here at the Winery! Cheers!
At left: Jenny Mosbacher, Tasting Room Supervisor, pours Pinot Gris for a staff tasting.
Tasting Room Facelift
Friday, February 18th 2011 by
Over the course of the next month, our Tasting Room is getting a facelift! Did you know that our Tasting Room is the oldest Tasting Room built specifically for that purpose in Oregon? It's true, and the room is lovely. But it's definitely time for some much needed renovations to better accommodate our wonderful Club members and guests!
We are also OPEN during our remodel! Come visit us in our Garden Room (just to the left of the Tasting Room) for the same great wines and service. We're open our usual hours, 10am-4pm daily. We've also covered and heated our Garden Room deck, so you and your friends can enjoy the Oregon wine country experience from outside and stay nice and cozy - even if it's raining (which it tends to do here this time of year)!
Check back soon for pictures and videos of the Tasting Room remodel in progress. We'll see you at the winery soon!
Sokol Blosser Remodels Tasting Room
Friday, April 1st 2011 by
Sokol Blosser Winery Remodels Oldest Tasting Room in Oregon
Pioneering Winery Works to Recreate a Vintage Space with Sustainable and Interactive Touches
April 1, 2011 (DUNDEE, OR) – Sokol Blosser Winery, a family owned winery since 1971 and proprietors of the first tasting room built for that purpose in Oregon, has remodeled their tasting room. The Sokol Blosser family expects the newly designed space to provide a more welcoming and educational experience.
The original tasting room building was designed by renowned Oregon architect John Storrs and opened in 1978, the same year the Sokol Blosser family released their first wines. The room features a large window to the northeast to view Mt. Hood, a wall of windows leading out to an open deck overlooking the estate vineyard, and skylights to provide a bright, cheery space in which to sample wine and learn about the estate’s Organic farming and winemaking practices.
“This remodel is the third ‘facelift’ our tasting room has seen,” said Alison Sokol Blosser, second generation winegrower and Co-President of Sokol Blosser Winery with her brother, Alex. “It’s held up well through the years and we look forward to sharing the new space with our summer visitors.”
The newly remodeled tasting room space features a recycled glass and concrete bartop designed by FUEZ, natural cork light fixtures, Energy Star rated appliances, and a new office built by Mighty Acorn Construction.
The room also features a 60” flat screen plasma television with Apple TV controlled by an interactive on-the-bar iPad. The television will display images of the winery’s long history, show tasting notes on current releases, present upcoming events, and will also play videos of winemaking techniques, vineyard practices and other videos specific to the interests of visitors.
“Customers are looking for an interactive experience when they come to wine country. When getting their shoes dirty in the vineyard isn’t possible or feasible, they can use the iPad and other visual displays to learn more about our terroir, geography, and history,” noted Alison Sokol Blosser.
Sokol Blosser’s tasting room will reopen for visitors on Saturday, April 2, 2011 and is open 10:00am to 4:00pm daily. Regular tours, vineyard hikes, and ATV tours are scheduled beginning in June 2011. For more information about Sokol Blosser Winery, including a list of upcoming events, visit www.sokolblosser.com.About Sokol Blosser Winery
The Sokol Blosser family planted their first grapevines in 1971 in the Dundee Hills and now farms over 85 certified Organic acres. As one of the pioneering wineries of the region, Sokol Blosser has played a key role in developing and shaping the now prominent Oregon wine industry. The winery works to create wines of world-class quality, produced in a sustainable manner, which reflect the distinctive flavors of the grapes, soil, and climate, as well as the winery's values and sense of place. The winery produces Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Evolution (a proprietary white wine blend of nine varieties) and Meditrina (proprietary red blend), along with small quantities of Single Block Pinot Noirs. Learn more at www.sokolblosser.com.
First Weekend in our New Tasting Room
Monday, April 4th 2011 by
We had a great weekend in our newly remodeled Tasting Room space! Visitors liked the calming new colors, the cork light fixtures, the extra space, the updated displays, and the cool new recycled glass bartop.
Have you seen our Tasting Room? We're open 10am-4pm daily - stop on by and say hello! We've also just released our 2010 Estate Rosé of Pinot Noir - just another good reason to dodge some raindrops and drop in.
Wine Spectator Grand Tour
Monday, May 16th 2011 by
Sokol Blosser was honored this year to be invited to attend the 2011 Wine Spectator Grand Tour with our 2008 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir (90 Pts from Wine Spectator)! We've just wrapped up events in Las Vegas and Chicago, and there is one more this Thursday, May 19 in Boston at Marriott Copely Place, 7-10pm. To learn more, please visit http://www.winespectator.com/micro/show/id/grandtour-intro.
Check out these fun pics featuring Jeff Knapp, Hospitality Manager, at the Las Vegas Grand Tour event this last weekend! Cheers!
21st Annual Memorial Weekend Celebration!
Friday, May 27th 2011 by
It's nearly here! Join us in our courtyard Saturday-Monday for a weekend of barrel tasting, fabulous wines, lively music and great grilled food by local favorite, the Rib Slayer! The Sokol Blosser family and staff will be here to welcome you and guide you through our delicious portfolio of current releases and hard to find gems - and don't forget barrel samples of our 2010 Pinot Noir, only available Memorial Day weekend!
Entry is $15 and includes barrel samples and wine tasting; entry is complimentary for Club members and up to 3 guest. We're open 10am-4pm each day (rain or shine - we'll be under the Big Tent!), and large groups are welcome - so bring your friends and be prepared to have a great time!
Jonah’s Just Begun Fundraiser
Wednesday, August 17th 2011 by
Foundation to cure Sanfilippo
On Sunday August 7th, I had the privilege to pour along with a lot of great local wineries for a charity to Cure Sanfilippo. The space in the Oak Groves at Stoller Vineyards was filled with tents and music. I poured Evolution for the afternoon, and the weather was perfect for it. My favorite question to ask is “ Have you tried Evolution before?” I enjoy having an opportunity to turn anyone onto Evolution, (or any Sokol Blosser wine really). It felt good to spend time with our neighbors and do something good for a good cause. Everybody seemed to have a nice time and we raised some money too!
Glad to Be Back!
Thursday, September 22nd 2011 by
Whew - I'm glad to be back! I've just returned to Sokol Blosser after 3 months focusing on my new son and growing family. The summer was a very special time for the McGuires - lots of learning (so many diapers!), lots of catnaps following disjointed nights, and lots of love and snuggles. We feel very blessed.
Now that I'm back at the Winery, there is a lot to look forward to here, too! Harvest is around the corner - Alex Sokol Blosser and Winemaker Russ Rosner are taking daily trips into the vineyard to check brix levels, the winery is sparkling clean in anticipation of fermentation, and new French oak barrels are magically appearing almost daily.
There's a lot to be done and the hum of excitement is hard to miss. Now is a great time to visit us - take a stroll through out walk-through vineyard and check out the ripe fruit, or enjoy a picnic on the deck overlooking wine country and enjoy one of these last lovely warm afternoons. The Tasting Room is open 10am-4pm daily. I'll look forward to greeting you now that I'm back!
Introducing Evolution Red
Friday, November 4th 2011 by
Thirteen years after 'advancing the entire wine universe a notch or two' with Evolution White, Sokol Blosser introduces its worthy companion... Evolution Red.
Anyone with any knowledge of science will tell you that evolution doesn't happen overnight. In fact, in the scheme of things, 13 years is half a blink of an eye.
Along with Evolution White, just about all food pairings are covered, which means they're the perfect duo to bring to a dinner. Or a dinner party. Or just a party. Yes, the release of Evolution Red is about time. But, as the old saying goes, extraordinary wines come to those who wait.
We invite you to try a glass or two yourself and reach your own conclusions. We think you'll love it and we'd love to hear your take. To purchase a 3 Bottle Sneak Peek Set that includes shipping, please click here. To let us know your thoughts, opinions, or to send us your haikus dedicated to Evolution Red, please click here.
Alex Travels to Sweden!
Friday, April 20th 2012 by Twix , Wine Poodle
Sweden is a great country! Where else can you go to the wine store (all government run) and find one of their biggest sellers a bottle with this label!!! I must say, I would prefer Kiss labels over dorky animal labels at this price point any day!!!
Alex in Sweden
Monday, April 23rd 2012 by Twix , Wine Poodle
Wine is a growing trend in Sweden and the drink of old is something called Aquavit. Flavored vodka is what it is. Here are three bottles that also describe cultural differences here in Scandanavia: one of the left is Swedish - it is cumin and lemon flavored and very smooth, middle is Danish- higher alcohol and spicy, and the right is from Norway- aged in oak and tastes like Whiskey. Not sure what that says about the cultural differences but there you have it!
Skol!!! (what you say here instead of Cheers or Salud!)
A Very Brief but Excellent Santa Barbara Wine Experience
Friday, May 25th 2012 by
left: downtown Santa Barbara on a cloudier day.
Au Bon Climat (below) and Margerum Wine Company (right) were two tasting rooms we visited.
It is not quite the same ambiance tasting in a ‘concrete jungle’ as it is amongst rows upon endless rows of vines, but if the wine is good, that’s all that matters. And the wine was good.
This wine region has a few pockets of heat, however, like the Willamette Valley; there is a mostly cooler climate due to ocean breezes off the Pacific. I loved the cooler climate Syrah I encountered and was very pleasantly impressed with quite a few of the Pinot Noirs I tasted.
True some of the Pinots tended to be a bit heavier and a bit bolder but they still showcased underlying earthiness and peppery spice, a trait I seek out.
It’s always good to get out of your own backyard and discover new wines and wineries when you have the chance. I, however, feel lucky that my backyard is the Willamette Valley and it feels good to be home.
Pre-IPNC dinner photos!
Monday, July 30th 2012 by
Here are some photos from our Pre-IPNC dinner!
Pairing Wines with Food Class - A great holiday gift!
Thursday, December 6th 2012 by
I don't know about you, but picking out the perfect gift for someone is a bit of an obsession for me. And, it gets harder every year!
I love giving experiential gifts - they are perfect for those people on your list who have everything - so when I ran across this Wine and Food Pairing class, I had to share!
Urban Wine Works on NE Fremont in Portland is offering 50% off a 2 person Wine and Food pairing class through My Perks Portland:
Two people will enjoy four wines matched with four small plates of foods that are typically hard to pair wine with. Classes provide education for wine and food lovers to pair wines with hard to pair foods.
Not going to lie, this might be a perfect gift for myself this holiday season!
A Taste of Oregon Wine from Sokol Blosser Winery
Tuesday, March 19th 2013 by Liesl Jackson
A Taste of Oregon Wine from Sokol Blosser Winery
Oregon might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of great wine, but that’s changing! Just an hour outside of Portland lies Willamette Valley and nestled in the beautiful Dundee Hills lies Sokol Blosser Winery. Last week, I enjoyed a lovely dinner at Towne in downtown Los Angeles hosted by Alison Sokol Blosser, co-president and Second Generation Wine Grower. We were given four Sokol Blosser selections and were treated to appetizers, dinner and desserts specially selected to pair with the wine assortment.
Sokol Blosser Winery (Photo courtesy of Sokol Blosser Winery)
The first wine we tasted was a 2011 Rosé of Pinot Noir. It was fruity with a hint of strawberries and very light and sweet. Rosé of Pinot Noir is 100 percent Pinot Noir. It is treated as if it is a white grape when it comes into the winery so they intentionally make this into a Rosé from the get go. It is made from 100 percent organic grapes as all of their grapes are certified organic. It is only sold through their tasting room, website and wine club.
As we drank the Rosé, Alison filled us in on a little history of Sokol Blosser Winery, like the fact that her parents planted their first grapes on what was once a prune orchard in 1971.“They were both teachers. They really liked wine. They thought, people had been making wine forever, it can’t be that hard. This will be kind of fun,” Alison said. “They were hippies. They came in their Volkswagen bus, my mom had the long braids and they wanted to grow something. They liked the idea of growing wine grapes.”What started as five acres has expanded to 125 acres, 85 of which are fully planted. Willamette Valley now has about 180 wineries.
Liesl Jackson and Alison Sokol Blosser
With dinner we were given two wines to try, a Sokol Blosser 2011 Willamette Valley Pinot Gris and a Sokol Blosser 2010 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir. The Pinot Gris had a tart citrus flavor and a steely mineral taste. Just the right option to go with a seafood or pasta dish.
Spicy White Bean Ravioli from Towne
The Pinot Noir was the third wine we tasted and one of the softest Pinot Noirs I’ve ever had. Alison explained: “Oregon Pinots are going to typically be much softer and delicate and elegant in style. We’re getting the ripeness but we have the acidity because it’s a cool climate so there’s a lot more structure in the wine. California pinots, because there is so much heat, get a jammy quality and so they’re much more concentrated and fruit driven.”
“My favorite way to think about Pinot Noir is this is not the kind of wine that’s going to hit you over the head. It’s not going to knock your socks off, it’s much more seductive. It’s going to sneak up and slip your socks off.”- Alison Sokol Blosser
"Seaweed" Brined Organic Chicken at Towne
Alison also gave us a preview into the new tasting room scheduled to open early July 2013. The design will feature a series of terraces, wood floors, walls and ceilings with large windows and skylights to allow for plenty of natural light. The wine tasting experience will be tailored to each individual person or group.“Do they want to do a Library tasting in a vertical of five years? Do they want to do a food and wine pairing in the kitchen? Do you they want to just sit out on the patio with their friends and have a few wines brought to them, or do they want to stand at the bar and have that kind of social experience?,” Alison said. “So we’ll have a lot of different options for people. And you can come and do all of them.”
A rendering of the new Sokol Blossser tasting room set to open in July 2013 (Photo courtesy of Sokol Blosser Winery)
We finished the dinner with a Sokol Blosser 2011 White Riesling. It was a very sweet desert wine that went well with Towne’s tasty assortment of deserts. “The White Riesling is made in the style of an ice wine,” Alison explained. “So with typical ice wine, the grapes freeze on the vine, but it’s not quite cold enough and we’re not quite crazy enough to pick the grapes in the middle of the night when they’re frozen. So we pick the grapes at the normal time. We freeze them and after harvest is done we bring in all of our frozen grapes and we let the grapes slowly defrosts. The trick is for the water part of the grape to stay frozen and the sweet nectar to slowly drip out.” They make it every other year and only sell it from the tasting room and online.
A delicious tray of deserts offered by Towne
Sokol Blosser 2011 White Riesling
All of the wines offered by Alison and Sokol Blosser Winery were exquisite. The standouts for me were the Pinot Noir and the Rosé of Pinot Noir. They are all definitely worth taking a trip up to Oregon to try, especially in July when the new tasting room is completed. You can also order online and sign up their wine clubs at www.sokolblosser.com, or visit Towne in downtown LA to taste Sokol Blosser wines paired with some of their delicious cuisine. Happy tasting!
ABOUT LIESL JACKSON: Liesl Jackson is a writer/actress/comedian/pet sitter living in the heart of Hollywood. She loves the arts, animals, volunteering, traveling, and attempting to learn the acoustic guitar. Email her at email@example.com. Follow her on twitter @SillyLiesl and follow The Pacific Punch @ThePacificPunch
Sokol Blosser Winery's Tasting Room Turns One
Tuesday, July 1st 2014 by Alex Sokol Blosser & Alison Sokol Blosser
One year ago today, we opened the doors to our new Tasting Room, designed by Allied Works Architecture. When we look back at our 40-plus years in business, opening our new Tasting Room was a monumental milestone for us. It was a triumphant moment being second generation leaders and siblings, and it puts us further down the road of fulfilling our vision to provide personalized wine country experiences for each of our visitors.
Since we opened the doors, we have been able to truly make memorable, personalized experiences for visitors to our Tasting Room. We were one of the first Oregon wineries to add several new layers of hospitality in one destination: table side service, welcoming host stand and wine & food pairings. It’s exciting to see so many people coming far and wide to see our new space, experience our wines and connect with our estate.
We’ve learned a lot over the past year and adapted our operational procedures based on the seasons and guests’ needs. We’re proud to say that one year later, we’re adding even more new things to build on our vision. We re-opened our John Storrs Tasting Room, the first purpose-built tasting room in Oregon built in 1978, to give guests an experience with a piece of history built in. We’ve also added Culinary Specialist Emily Martin to the team, who is expanding our wine & food program to create delectable pairing experiences that deepens our guests’ knowledge of the relationship between the two. Finally, we’re redesigning The Cellar Lounge to become a year-round exclusive Cellar Club member area.
Building the facility in a sustainable manner – from the green roof to lighting to insulation – was imperative during the process. We initially set out for the new Tasting Room to be a net zero energy facility to achieve Living Building Challenge certification. However, our energy usage ended up being more than we anticipated as we balanced operational needs against energy efficiency. We’re working together as a team to identify ways to improve our energy usage and look to pursue the Living Building Challenge in the years to come.
In the last year, we have loved hearing the positive memories made here at the winery along with constructive feedback that helps us make the experience the best it can be. We listened intently to your comments, and all of the feedback has contributed to the evolution of our new Tasting Room.
Thank you to every guest who has made it out to our new Tasting Room in the last year, to all our guests who support us and to those who we look forward to serving in the years to come. And, a big thank you to our fabulous team for making this incredible adventure possible.
In celebration, we have released our 2011 Single Block Pinot Noirs - Big Tree Block, Peach Tree Block and Orchard Block - and are throwing several celebratory events, including our Swingin' Summer Salmon Bake. Follow us on this blog, Facebook and Twitter this month as we share more stories and memories of our Tasting Room with you. If you haven't had a chance yet, take a virtual tour of our Tasting Room - click here to check it out!
Alex & Alison
P.S. We are excited to be featured in the July issues of Food & Wine and Travel+Leisure. Pick up your copies while they are on news stands this month!
I Remember When... Consumer Sales Manager Eric Leblang Recalls the Night Before the Tasting Room Opened
Wednesday, July 23rd 2014 by Eric Leblang, Consumer Sales Manager
I remember when…
I walked through the new tasting room the night before it opened to the public.
The space was void of sound and only the creaks of the new floorboards could be heard. As I walked through the space, I started to visualize the coming months. I pictured the library full of oenophiles deductively tasting our singles block pinot noir and the kitchen overflowing with epicureans pairing our pinot noir with local charcuterie and cheese. I walked onto our front porch and could visualize the tables full with visitors overlooking the Willamette Valley and sipping on our Evolution Sparkling. The possibilities were endless, and the energy I felt from the new tasting room was almost palpable.
The next day the doors opened and there I stood, in my first winery position, as host for the new tasting room. As the throngs of visitors walked through the front door, eyes wide and smiles from ear to ear, I had nothing but enthusiasm to share with them.
“With over 5000 square feet of tasting room, it’s like an adult Disneyland”; the guests chuckled at my comment.
From that day on, Sokol Blosser Winery was no more a tasting room than a destination, and I was proud to be a part of the new family!
I Remember When... Tasting Room Floor Manager Alex Sarasohn Remembers the First Days in the new Tasting Room
Friday, July 25th 2014 by Alex Sarasohn, Floor Manager/Senior Tasting Room Sales Associate
The Tasting Room was just opening. I was driving up the long driveway up the vineyard, excited to start working in the brand new tasting room.
As I walked up to the new building, I saw Susan Sokol Blosser, Alison Sokol Blosser and Alex Sokol Blosser planting flowers, shrubs, succulents throughout the front of the building. It made me remember and realize that Sokol Blosser is a family-run business in every aspect. It made me proud to work for a family that is willing to do the dirty, backbreaking labor to make the new tasting room look beautiful.