28 September 2009

Oregon Joins the Club

Oregon has joined the family of Pinotage growers. Melrose Vineyards, located in the delightfully named Umpqua Valley, near the town of Roseburg in southern Oregon, planted Pinotage in 2004 on the banks on the South Umpqua River and currently they have one acre of Pinotage.

Melrose is owned by Wayne and Deedy Parker who started their vineyards in 1996. The Parker family decided to plant Pinotage for “the unique wine experience and for the challenge of growing a grape unknown in the Umpqua Valley.” Wayne Parker says “the vines are doing exceptionally well.”

Rachael Miller at Melrose says “customers are intrigued by the delightfully fragrant nose that almost seems to contradict the unusually rich berry flavours.” She adds that “Pinotage makes a great reduction for pork tenderloin and is very flexible when pairing with food.”

Melrose released their first varietal Pinotage, from the 2006 vintage, last November and so far it has won a bronze medal at the 2009 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and a silver medal at the 2009 Oregon Seafood & Wine Festival.

Oregon joins fellow US states California and Virginia in growing and making commercially available varietal Pinotage along with Montana, New York and North Carolina which are growing Pinotage.


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