Monday, August 27, 2012

#PinotSmackdown... Oregon is Pre-Ordained

The 3rd annual Pinot Smackdown gets underway on Thursday, September 6th.  Around the world, wine lovers in the know when it comes to using the twitter machine, will be convening over a bottle of perhaps the world's most noble of noble varietals to drink and tweet about their Pinot Noir of choice.  Pinot has come to be planted across the globe, migrating from it's most revered home in France's Burgundy. Pinot  Noir has been planted with success in New Zealand, British Columbia, Chile, Washington State, New York State, and even... California. Not sure why you'd drink that though.

Variety is nice and all but as we've come to know, the greatest place on earth for the planting of Pinot Noir, outside of it's noble home in Burgundy is within Oregon's Willamette Valley. Earthen, dusty and elegant wines with that signature "fresh fruit" are what Oregon Pinot Noir have come to represent.  What can be lost in the beauty that is Oregon Pinot Noir, for the uninitiated, is it's ability to express vineyard site or growing areas as well as vintages with a clarity that is probably found in only one other place on earth, again... Burgundy.

If Oregon has a leg up on Burgundy, (IF, I said) it's that compared to that ethereal wine producing motherland, it's pricing goes beyond approachable to downright paltry. (Again, we're comparing the two regions.) What I'm not implying is that Oregon Pinot Noir is Burgundy, but it's been called "Burgundian" and "Old World" in style so many times to avoid the topic altogether would be foolish.

What is for certain however is that Oregon Pinot Noir is beautiful unto itself. It is not Burgundian, except maybe to be more Burgundian than anywhere else.  What Oregon and the Willamette Valley really is in terms of Pinot Noir is serendipity.  It just sets up beautifully, terroir city folks.  A long growing season and winter weather that remains temperate in addition to the perfect combination of soils and slopes and you've got Pinot Noir paradise.

What this means is that the writing is on the wall.  Over time the world is coming to recognize that the best Pinot Noirs in the new world, hands down are coming from Oregon's Willamette Valley.  California? New Zealand? The jig is up. This year's #PinotSmackdown Champion will be #OR Pinot Noir. I promise. I guarantee it.

So this #PinotSmackdown, next Thursday that is, you can mess around, act a fool and drink something not from Oregon. Or you can join the Anthem, we'll be popping #OR Pinot at two locations, one in Seattle at Bin 41, right in the heart of West Seattle's Junction as well as down in Pinotlandia itself at Portland's Enso Winery.  More details to come this week and expect lots of smack talk. It's only Monday. Come join us, or taste and tweet at home and follow along with the #PinotSmackdown hashtag.


Oh yeah, it's on #OR represent! Woot!

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