It takes a lot of Beer!

There is a saying… “It takes a lot of good beer to make great wine”. And lest you think that you have stumbled upon the secret ingredient to legendary Pinot, sorry… it is a commentary on how much beer is consumed during winemaking, particularly at harvest and crush. Trust me, as someone who has spent crazy hours at sorting tables, doing punch downs, ferment temps or shoveling out presses… well, the last thing you want to smell let alone drink is a glass of wine. Hurray for BEER!

I want you to understand my deep affection for that sudsy beverage andthe fine folk who drink it. Why is this relevant to a wine blog? Well, you see, we are about to begin our new series of wine classes for Wine Events Oregon. We start our Wine 101 class (intro to wine basics) in early March… holding class in the beautiful cellar of Capitello Winery on Tuesday or Thursday evenings. Please check the website calendar forparticulars.

But the imminent start of these classes got me reflecting on a certain peculiarity. The vast majority of attendees to these classes are, inevitably, women. Now, to be sure, I’m not complaining. But I am always curious as to why. I have asked many attendees and the most common reply is usually something like “well, my (husband, boyfriend, partner) is more of a beer guy”. WHAT?

As a bit of a “beer guy” myself with the belly to prove it, I find it odd that the love of one particular fermented beverage somehow precludes you from loving another. Walk into any winery tasting room these days and it is a pretty sure bet that there is at least one tap handle featuring a good local beer. That’s great! But ask the tasting room server and you are likely to get the feeling that the beer is there for the poor slog who got dragged off to the winery with his wife’s book club.

And before anyone gets offended that my references are gender based… that’s my point! When did it become a “guy” thing to want a beer? When did drinking wine become a “woman’s” thing? Why aren’t there more guys signing up for wine classes? Come on folks, the appreciation of a handcrafted, artisan beverage is for all of us.

So I am inviting EVERYONE to check out our class and workshop offerings. You too Beer guy! It is time to break these silly stereotypes. Understanding and appreciating wine is a GOOD thing. We have fun. We learn from each other. We laugh a lot. We drink. I tell stories. And if you really need me to explain the difference between PBR and Tricerahops, I can do that too.

I look forward to the classes beginning. If you have any questions about them, post in the comments below. I am happy to respond. Really. Sign up! Cheers

P.S. A lot of you have commented that I should do a “wine review”or recommendation as part of my blog posts. So beginning with this posting, I will give you my thoughts on my favorite wine that I tasted since the last posting. Here goes!I pulled the cork on a number of good wines recently. A couple standouts… a 2006 Williams Selyem Pinot, a 2007 J.Scott Syrah and a 1988 Altesino Brunello. But the wine of choice to write about might (will) surprise you.Winemaker Mark Nicholl (William Rose Wines, Oregon Wine LAB) knows how to make wine. They are always technically and varietaly correct, fairly priced and a pleasure to drink. You could describe the wines as “classic”. Mark, on the other hand, well… lets just go with “unconventional”, in all the best possible ways. So I am very pleased to recommend to you the 2015 William Rose Neopinoterric. Delicious and, yes, unconventional. A pinot done in the style reminiscent of a Beaujolais Nouveau, this is a wine with aromas and flavors that burst from the glass. This Pinot is fresh, fruity, balanced, easy to drink, thought provoking and sure to get you talking. It is simple… that is… simply yummy! Go taste this wine. And, with only 38 cases made, it is very limited. At $20 it is a real value. Buy some NOW. And not just one or two. You need to buy lots. You will love this wine. Your friends will love this wine. You will run out. Quickly. Consider yourself warned. Thank you, Mark, for surprising us once again. Good on ya, mate!

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