The Naked Vine: Terrapin Cellars’ Pinot Gris
found way onto my doorstep, into my heart

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By Mike Rosenberg

KyForward contributor

 

One of the great perks of this gig is receiving samples. Wine at the door always brightens the day. Wine showing up unexpectedly really brightens the day. I’m not sure exactly where this particular bottle came from. I have my suspicions, but I’m sure not complaining…

 

Terrapin Cellars 2010 Oregon Pinot Gris

 

Oregon has become rightfully well known for Pinot Noir. I’ve had a number of Gewurztraminers and Rieslings from Oregon, but I was interested to learn that the “other” Pinot — Pinot Gris — is actually the second-most planted grape in the state. A number of winemakers recently decided to start carving out a niche for Oregon Pinot Gris. The wineries in this marketing group have vowed to stop making comparisons to Italy or Alsace, focusing on the uniqueness of their own terroir. I’m personally very interested to see where this marketing effort goes.

 

I’m even more interested after trying this offering from Terrapin Cellars. My first thought was, alas, “Alsace.” The pleasant aromas of melon and lemon made me immediately think of an Alsatian wine. The flavor was quite different. Yes, the high acidity and minerality were certainly there, but there was a creaminess to balance those characteristics that’s often lacking in Alsatian wines. Pineapple and melon were the strongest flavors I picked up. The finish is fruity, gentle, and lasting. We had this wine with a pretty tough pairing grilled orange roughy alongside asparagus sauteed with ginger. Most wines shrink from asparagus. This one most certainly did not. If it can handle asparagus, it can handle just about anything you’d have a white with.

 

Simply put, this wine’s a winner, especially at a $14 price point. I’ll extend an apology to the folks at Terrapin for drawing the Alsace comparison, but for any of the readers who are fans of that style of wine — you’ll probably dig these Oregon offerings. You’ll also save a few shekels in the process.

 

Whomever sent this along, many thanks. It’s a keeper.

 

Mike Rosenberg just loves to cook. He is a “Sommelier for the Common Man,” a regular guy with fifteen bucks worth of savoir faire and a nose for tasty food and wine. Learn about wine at his blog, The Naked Vine, and follow his culinary adventures at The Man Who Cooks – and here at Food and Fun at KyForward. Email Mike at thenakedvine@gmail.com. Mike is on a basil kick, so tune back in for more recipes – and expect to find basil in them.

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