On Thursday Carl and I drove out to our local wine area – Yamhill County – to pick up our wine futures that we bought last November. I left messages the evening before letting the wineries know we were coming. The next morning one of the wineries called back and asked me to try to avoid the 2 o’clock hour but that was the only restriction I had.
Wine futures are usually sold during the open house weekends. You taste the wine from the barrel and try to decide if it will become something that will be good. You pay a lower price for the wine by buying it ahead of time, but you also take the risk that it won’t be good.
We got a little bit later start than I wanted – Carl picked that morning to suddenly be interested in toilet training and I was not going to rush him. We also stopped for some french fries as a reward for this new found interest.
Our first winery was Beaux Freres, a small winery north west of Newberg. We bought 2 bottles of Belle Soeurs and 2 bottles of Ana. We haven’t tried them yet, but if I have a successful weigh in on Thursday, we will. The Winery is in a barn – it has been fixed nicely with offices and a good floor.
We then drove down Worden Hill Road to Dundee and Domaine Serene winery. One place we drove past looked really nice – the Black Walnut Inn.
Not far after the Inn, Carl took off his seat belt. I pulled over and told him that that was a naughty thing to do and dangerous. He kept saying mommy lost and wouldn’t get in his car seat. How does a two year old think we are lost? I held him by the side of this country road for several minutes while he cried and explained we weren’t lost but going to wineries like we did a few weekends ago (ok it was Memorial day). He finally got back in the car and promptly fell asleep.
Domaine Serene is like arriving at an Italian estate. The entrance is gated and you must be buzzed in on non-open house days. You drive through vineyards and past a private residence to get to the big winery on the hill. The building and grounds were having some heavy duty maintanence work performed, so I had to carry sleeping Carl a round about way into the tasting room.
My order was ready but one thing that wasn’t very cool – here I was carrying a sleeping child and no one offered to carry the wine to my car. I had to wake Carl and get him to walk.
We bought 2004 Rockblock Carpenter Hill Syrah. We opened a bottle Thursday in celebration of my weight loss – it was very good with a full bodied fruity flavor with a slight dryness in the finish.
We then stopped at Red Ridge Farms, which is a little way down the road from Domaine Serene. This is a nursery that specializes in herbs but has a lot of really nice ornamentals also. While we were in one of the buildings, a humming bird flew in. It checked out the flowers, tried to get out through the roof, perched on a bar, told us what he thought, then flew out the door. Carl talked about that for a while.
I didn’t get anything this time, but I bought a number of herbs including my Bay Laurel there in the past.