Rating 95

No. 1

Evening Land ?Vineyards

2009 Chardonnay Seven Springs Vineyard La Source Eola-Amity Hills, $60

A collaboration between winemaker Isabelle Meunier and consulting winemaker Dominique Lafon, this wine is the result of a perfect storm of conscious viticulture, a merciful growing season, and a touch of magic. With layer upon layer of flavor—bright Meyer lemon, apple blossom, ripe Asian pear, and subtle spice, with well-blended caramel notes from careful oak aging—this wine has it all. Balanced, rich, and bright with crisp fruit, it is the quintessential expression of Oregon’s new chardonnay. Meunier honed her skills in Burgundy, New Zealand, and her native Canada before ?arriving in Oregon’s Eola-Amity Hills region outside of Salem, where grapes for La Source are carefully grown and hand-selected.

Rating 94


Bethel Heights Vineyard

2009 Chardonnay Estate Grown Eola-Amity Hills, $25

Using a blend of Dijon and old-vine Wente clones, this classic chardonnay shows a welcome balance of richness and bright acidity. The best of the old-school Oregon style, this rich, golden wine marries minerality and flavors of ripe pineapple and lemon zest, resulting in a smooth palate that’s full-bodied and perfumed but never cloying.


Ponzi Vineyards

2008 Chardonnay Reserve Willamette Valley, $30

2008 wasn’t just a great year for pinot noir. The cool spring and Indian summer of that storied vintage also resulted in chardonnays that continue to impress. In this smooth-textured, golden wine, rich oak notes are balanced by bright acidity and fresh flavors of lemon curd and thyme. Pair with poached halibut, earthy mushrooms, and fava beans.



2008 Riesling Ara ? Willamette Valley, $25

Named after the altar that Noah built after the Flood, this riesling is the praise-worthy result of a tumultuous year. With heady scents of rose petals and apple and juicy flavors of peach, apricot, and kiwi, this bright and refreshing wine was featured at President Obama’s first White House State Dinner, paired with red lentil soup.


Lange Estate winery & vineyards

2010 Pinot Gris Reserve ?Willamette Valley, $20

Don Lange was the first American winemaker to produce barrel-fermented pinot gris, and this legacy shines through in his son Jesse’s latest vintage. Oak barreling lends richness to the wine’s bright notes of green apple, honey, and lemon zest. Full-bodied from the first sip to the lingering finish, this wine will pair well with Mexican cuisine.

Rating 91


Raptor Ridge

2010 Pinot Gris Willamette Valley, $18

For fans of traditional Oregon pinot gris, winemaker Scott Shull’s latest vintage will certainly satisfy. Featuring clean scents of apple blossoms and tangerine, sweet flavors of pears and Meyer lemon, bright acidity, and a juicy finish, this wine will pair well with clams in garlic butter or grilled salmon.


Stoller Vineyards

2008 Chardonnay SV Estate Dundee Hills, $28

The warm fall of 2008 allowed plenty of time for grapes to fully ripen, lending the vintage a lush, complex, and fruit-forward character. This creamy wine is packed with flavors of almonds, brioche, and baked apples, with a full body that will hold its own when paired with richer dishes like herb-roasted chicken, cheesy pasta, or creamy soups.


Adelsheim ?Vineyard

2010 Auxerrois Ribbon Ridge, $22

David Adelsheim imported Oregon’s first vines of Auxerrois (pronounced oak-sair-wah) in the late ’70s, but the varietal remains relatively unknown despite its success in Oregon’s cool soils. Bursting with scents of orange blossom, tropical fruit flavors, and bright acidity, this refreshing wine will pair perfectly with crab salad, ceviche, or cured salmon.


Teutonic Wine Co

2010 Riesling Willamette Valley, $15

This small-production winery—offering only 126 cases of its 2010 riesling—is known for its high-acid, low-alcohol wines that are truly food-friendly. With soft notes of peaches, strawberry, and rose petals, this light wine begs to be paired with oysters or any fresh, briny seafood.

Rating 90


Elk Cove ?Vineyards

2010 Pinot Gris Willamette Valley, $18

With scents of sweet pear and almonds, fresh acidity, and flavors of baking spice and ripe peaches that linger on the palate, Elk Cove’s 2010 estate pinot gris is a definite crowd pleaser. This food-friendly wine from one of Oregon’s oldest wineries will be delicious with a citrus salad and fresh chèvre.

Rating 89


Amity Vineyards

2008 Dry ?Gewürztraminer Sunnyside Vineyard Willamette Valley, $20

This traditional golden gewürztraminer is rich, fruit-forward, and intense, with flavors of lychee, Asian pear, and fresh green herbs. Though labeled “dry,” this wine offers a bright sweetness through complex fruit flavors, and will perfectly calm the heat of spicy Thai food.


Love and ?Squalor

2010 Riesling Willamette Valley, $18

Matt Berson’s zesty riesling—made with organic grapes—is sweet, lush, and refreshing, offering flavors of peaches and mangoes for a balanced palate that’d be a perfect picnic sipper. Pack a backpack with a baguette, smoked salmon, Peppadew peppers, and a corkscrew, and you’re set for a wonderful meal.

Rating 88


J. Albin Winery

2010 Pinot Gris Willamette Valley, $15

Bright flavors of ripe pear and white peaches, notes of buttery almond, and a peppery spiciness blend together for a rich palate that lingers and tempts you to keep sipping. Pair with melon and goat cheese salads, thin-sliced cured meats, and fresh peaches.



2010 Riesling Sweet P Riesling Willamette Valley, $22

Named for the winery’s 15-year-old owner, Pascal, this fun, casual wine has a bright, sparkling sweetness balanced by juicy acidity. Bursting with flavors of honeydew, peaches, and lilac, Sweet P will be a hit at any potluck. But bring a few bottles: it’ll go fast.


The Four Graces

2010 Pinot Gris Willamette Valley, $18

Stainless steel fermentation lends a clean subtlety to this silky wine from the Red Hills of Dundee. Bursting with citrus and green apple notes, this bright, lean pinot gris will pair well with pasta, fresh basil, and spicy Italian sausage.