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Willamette Valley Oregon

The DDO vineyards on a cool March day.

History is, of course, an important subject and shapes much of the present in so many endeavours. But in the wine world, we have learned, history plays an even more important role than in most fields. Perhaps that is because making fine wine is more art than science. The art of making wine has history very much at its foundations: it is passed down from generation to generation, very often within the same family. Such is the case of Burgundy’s Drouhin family, who first began in the wine business 137 years ago in Beaune when Maison Joseph Drouhin was founded. It did not take long for this domaine to prosper and successive generations of Drouhins took it from strength to strength. Today Maison Joseph Drouhin is a Burgundy powerhouse; a domaine that it has grown to become a significant business in the area and one that also holds some of the best vineyard lands and produces some of Burgundy’s top wines.

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Big Table Farm: Down to Earth

Big Table Farm: Down to Earth


Posted on May 17, 2017

Willamette Valley oregon

Brian, Clare & Levi.

One of our favourite things about wine is that it brings people together. Big Table Farm has built their winery and farm on this concept as winemaker Brian Marcy and partner Clare Carver combine their passion for wine, food and art into a place that is one part winery, one part working farm and all parts impressive.

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FranceThe name Chapoutier is nearly synonymous with the Rhone Valley. Headquartered in Tain in the Northern Rhone’s Hermitage A.O.C., Maison M. Chapoutier produces a great number of wines from both the Northern Rhone and from the Southern Rhone. From the value-end to the very top wines in the region, Chapoutier is able to do both because it owns its own vineyards as well as having a large “negociant” business where they buy grapes and wine made by other and distribute under their name and auspices. Originally founded in 1808 by the Calvet family, the Chapoutier family acquired it in 1855 and it has remained in family hands ever since.

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Brewer-Clifton Winery Santa Barbara

Winemaker Greg Brewer

We pulled up to Brewer-Clifton on a sunny but cool day in January. Outside of the winery stood Greg Brewer, co-founder and winemaker, looking up into the sky, his hand shielding his eyes, as he squinted into the sun. “That is the new Space-X rocket” he said, pointing. “Cool…. I’m Greg” he says as he stretches out his hand in greeting, a broad smile beneath dancing eyes. It turns out that initial moment captured a lot of the personality of the man we were about to spend the next 90 minutes with. Brewer is intellectual, curious about all sorts of things, warm, unusual and one seriously good winemaker.

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It’s rare to see a successful winemaker succeeding in the Napa Valley give up a sure thing to move to Oregon and start a new winery working with a completely different grape and climate. That’s exactly what Steve Girard did and the Willamette Valley is that much better for it.

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Alexana Winery: Recipe for Success

Alexana Winery: Recipe for Success


Posted on Apr 19, 2017

Dundee Hills Oregon

The vineyards at Alexana Winery

Having been to numerous wineries around the world, nothing is more satisfying than discovering a real gem for the first time. Alexana Vineyards was that find for us on a recent trip to Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Located in the Dundee Hills AVA, it is one of the most unique properties we’ve come across, with no less than eighteen soil types divided into 31 different parcels to extract the very best from each micro-region.

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The Willamette Valley: A Primer

The Willamette Valley: A Primer


Posted on Apr 11, 2017

Willamette Valley

King Estate vineyards

In December of last year, the influential wine magazine Wine Enthusiast named Oregon’s  Willamette Valley their Wine Region of Year for 2016. AdVINEtures decided to take trip down there and see how things had evolved since we were there two years ago. What we found was a wine region that charms visitors with its lack of pretension, a terrific food scene that focuses on local, farm-to-table cuisine, and a group of winemakers that embrace a sense of community and collaboration that has resulted in them producing wines at the top of their game. We thought their award was richly deserved.

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Exploring Oregon Wine Country

Exploring Oregon Wine Country


Posted on Apr 5, 2017

Willamette Valley

The view at King Estate Winery.

We have been fans of Oregon wine for a very long time which has translated into multiple trips to the State over the past several years. Our most recent trip was prompted by two things: the Willamette Valley region being named “Region of Year” by Wine Enthusiast magazine, and the praise being heaped on the 2014 and 2015 Pinot Noir vintages currently being released. What we discovered is that while Pinot Noir is what put the Willamette Valley on the world wine map, it is what the area offers as a whole that makes it the perfect place to visit time and again.

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