2011: An Indie Winemaker Review

10 Feb

By Christabelle…

Wine enthusiasts take note, because 2011 is the year for an Oregon Indie Review. At this year’s Portland Indie Wine & Food Festival (PIWFF) on Saturday, May 14th, 2011, Indie winemaker alumni are taking center stage and pouring their wines, including Oregon’s highly lauded 2008 vintage. Returning winemakers will be joined by new wineries (some releasing their first-ever vintages at the festival) that are selected at a blind tasting organized in collaboration with Cole Danehower, author of Essential Wines and Wineries of the Pacific Northwest, published by Timber Press.

Now in its 7th year, PIWFF 2011 will feature an all-star line-up of wineries that participated in the festival from 2005 – 2010, mixed with officially selected new wineries, set alongside Portland’s top chefs in a cool industrial space.

PIWFF is a once-a-year opportunity to mingle with wineries that have been integral in building the craft winemaking movement in Oregon… and more importantly, to taste and buy their hard-to-find wines direct in one stop. Think of a quality-controlled, winemaker farmers market.

“Since the competition and festival began in 2005, we’ve seen many of our undiscovered wineries earn top scores from major wine media and grow into some of Oregon’s most talked about wine brands,” says Lisa Donoughe, PIWFF Founder. “With Oregon’s 2008 vintage being touted as one of the state’s best ever, we thought it would be valuable to invite all alumni back (first come first served!) to show off their best stuff.”

The Portland Indie Wine & Food Festival serves as a launching pad for budding winemakers and wineries across the state.  Just a few weeks ago, a PIWFF veteran winery, Et Fille Wines from the Willamette Valley, was featured in Eric Asimov’s New York Times “Pour” column, which said “the 2008 vintage for Oregon Pinot noir is superb.”

“This year, attendees can look forward to discovering, reconnecting with, and tasting through current releases from Oregon’s amazing family-owned boutique wineries, many of whom launched their wines at this prestigious festival,” adds Donoughe.

Past PIWFF chef partners have included local chef luminaries such as James Beard nominated chef Cathy Whims of Nostrana and chef/butcher Adam Sappington of The Country Cat Dinnerhouse & Bar.  Just as the winemakers are on site to pour their wines, so too are the chefs to prepare and serve their food.

The PIWFF Grand Tasting takes place Saturday, May 14, 2011 from 2 – 6 p.m. at The Bison Building (419 NE 10th Ave, Portland).

Tickets are on sale now for $75, and $125 for VIP early entry (1 p.m.).  General admission tickets include a commemorative festival tasting glass, pours from all wineries and food from top Oregon chefs who share the same craftsmanship and values as the artisan wineries.

Click here to buy tickets, and for more information visit the Portland Indie Wine & Food Festival online at www.indiewinefestival.com.  A complete list of participating wineries and chefs will be posted by April 4, 2011.

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