Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Sweet Cheeks and Pulled Pork

The trip out to Sweet Cheeks Winery was supposed to be quick, but after a stop at Silvan for a visit with Angela, the trip got a little longer. We chatted about her new baby and about the show at the museum and I gave her a test proof of the etching I am doing of Silvan Ridge for the Salud! auction this year. They are contributors to the cause and I have selected them and 10  other wineries this year to create etchings for in an edition of ten to auction off.
I made a quick stop at Sweet Cheeks to see Mark, the winemaker, and give him back a wine carrier he had loaned me at the dinner we had at the Schnitzer Museum. He surprised me with a bottle of his own brand, Bootlegger Wines , Demon Bird Red Table Wine. (Tasting notes: This is a very good blend. Though it is not listed on the bottle I am guessing it is Syrah, Tempranillo, and  some Barbera with perhaps a little cab. Washington fruit. Soft mouth feel, candied cherries on the nose with hints of rum and spice, deep rich black fruit flavors and a clean finish. Great acid balance. We had it with smoked salmon, white cheese, and bread and it held up really well. The acid cleaned the pallet and the flavors enhanced the food. Perfect.)
On the way home I stopped in at one of my favorite little stores,  The Baily Hill Market, for a BBQ fix. They have some of the best BBQ around. Pulled pork, brisket, chicken, and it comes with  slaw. Nothing better after a hard day of wine tasting.
While I was there I was ask what I thought about Emerson 08 Pinot Noir. The fact that they had a bottle peaked my interest so I went over and explored the wine section. WOW! I picked up a few bottles of '07 Pinot Noir from several wineries, including Lone Oak. This wine has matured wonderfully and has current, red fruit, a little pepper on the finish. It has an acid balance that just makes you want to try it with all kinds of foods just to see what it WON"T go with!
If anyone is still laboring under the false assumption that the '07s are lacking, forget it and buy what you can find. This is some of the finest, most delicate and complex wines we have produced here in Oregon and it is just drinking well now. It will continue for a few more years but feel free to open it now and enjoy.
The wine selection at this market is reason enough to stop by, even if you don't like BBQ.

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