Thursday, June 7, 2012, 8:30 a.m.
The best and brightest talent in Oregon is once again gathering to discuss the potential of Oregon’s Pinot Gris, putting Oregon on the map as “the Pinot state” (both Gris and Noir), at Oak Knoll Winery.
My friend and president of Oak Knoll Winery Greg Lint travels the United States conducting wine sales. In that process, he’s learned that Oregon needs to be known for more than Pinot Noir. “Oregon can’t survive on Pinot Noir alone, if we’re to flourish in the global wine market,” he told me years ago. “Oregon must also be known for our Pinot Gris. Pinot Gris is our second largest grape crop, second only to Pinot Noir.”
At this year’s 2012 Oregon Wine Industry Symposium, the 2011 Oregon Pinot Gris Symposium’s theme, “that Oregon cannot survive on Pinot Noir alone,” seems to have taken hold, as the Pinot Gris Symposium message was delivered to the attendees. I believe that as the stepson of Ron Vuylsteke, Greg’s carrying on the banner of being a wine industry visionary.
ABOUT OAK KNOLL WINERY: Oak Knoll Winery was founded 42 years ago, as one of the leaders of the Oregon Wine industry, by Ron and Marj Vuylsteke. As pioneers of the Oregon wine industry, the Vuylstekes received the 2006 OR Wine Industry Symposium Founders Award. At the time, Greg told me, “The Vuylsteke family is so humble, and this so deserved for all of their quiet leadership. It also meant so much to our winemaker Jeff Herinckx, Ron Vuylsteke’s cousin and me. The Founders Award is an honor that recognizes all we’ve done, as we live our passions and dreams in Willamette Valley.”
The 2011 Oregon Pinot Gris Symposium’s goal was to openly discuss Oregon’s unique climate, soils, and vineyards and viticulturists, as well as unique winemaking techniques. After the first symposium, our mission was met. Keynote speaker Paul Gregutt of Wine Enthusiast Magazine, however, took it to the next step, when he stated, “You’ve got to stop with the Alsace and Italian comparisons. It’s time to talk Oregon Pinot Gris!” This was a new concept, and created a new stage in the marketing of Pinot Gris for many wineries, including a marketing group that I formed with my Diaz Communications company, under the name of www.oregonpinotgris.org.
SIDEBAR: Evan Goldstein MS, author of several books including daring pairings (which steps outsides the boundaries of the usual wine varietal suspects), just said to me, “You get involved in such interesting projects.” Right he is… as with this Oregon Pinot Gris.
This year’s symposium’s goal is to begin to have a more clear vision of what constitutes Oregon’s unique flavor profile, with discussions primarily focused on Oregon Pinot Gris tipicity. At the end of this symposium, attendees will again walk away with more talking points, for another year.
Oregon Pinot Gris Symposium presented by Oak Knoll Winery
29700 SW Burkhalter Road, Hillsboro OR
Thursday, June 7, 2012, 8:30 a.m
For Proprietors, Winemakers, and Grape Growers ONLY, and seating is Limited. (Last year we sold out way ahead of schedule.)
Attendees will again be welcomed by Greg Lint and Jeff Herinckx (Winemaker):
- KEYNOTE SPEAKER
- Paul Gregutt ~ Seattle Times, Wine Enthusiast, Wine & Jazz, and PaulGregutt.com
- The Tipicity of Oregon Pinot Gris, Regarding its Terroir
- Joe Dobbes, Joe Dobbes Wines, Polk County in Willamette Valley
- We’re Blessed With Some Of The Best Fruit in The World
- Jesse Lange, of Lange Estate Winery & Vineyards, in the Dundee Hills Appellation
- Crafting Our Light, Crisp, Approachable Pinot Gris True To Varietal Character With Beautifully Balanced Acidity
- Jeff Kandarian, of King Estate Winery, Eugene, Oregon, Willamette Valley
- Producing Oregon Pinot Gris of Exceptional Quality Through Impeccable Winemaking Practices and Judicious Blending
- Greg Lint, Oak Knoll, Hillsboro, Willamette Valley
- Dealing With the Frustration That Wholesalers Only Want Our Pinot Noir
- Ellen Brittan, Brittan Vineyards of McMinnville AVA, Willamette Valley
- The Naked Truth About Distribution; What Wholesalers Want From Us
- LUNCHEON w/MEDIA ~ 12:30 ~ 1:30 p.m.
- BEST OF THE OREGON PINOT GRIS TASTING ~ 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. With MEDIA
Registrations will be accepted on line at www.oakknollwinery.com, during this week
This year’s event continues to be one of exploration, education, and enlightenment for Oregon’s Pinot Gris wine grape variety.