Friday, June 19, 2009

Your Oregon Wine-Touring Companion

I'm heading to Walla Walla this weekend, for a little family meet-up time, albeit short. As you must know by now, Walla Walla is the hot new wine capital -- a far cry from the small wheat-and-onion-and-strawberry town that I grew up in. When I left WW for college (more than a decade ago, less than a century), there were ZERO wineries in WW; at last count there were more than a hundred, many of them producing top-notch wines. Sure makes coming home for the family visitation even more exhilarating! And along with all those wines and wineries comes four-star restaurants and wine bars. Yeehaw!!! Hmmmm. I might have to come home with a bottle or two....

But Oregon ain't no slouch in the wine department either. And as summer approaches -- although the rain and hail I see through the store window would say otherwise -- it's a good time to start planning some winery tours. A newly published book might be the perfect companion for those trips, Wine Trails of Oregon: A Guide for Uncorking Your Memorable Wine Tour, by Steve Roberts. This book is chalkful of photographs and maps to guide you through the entire state (including Zerba Cellars, one of my favorites, which is in Milton-Freewater -- spitting distance from the actual town of WW). While it doesn't have every winery in Oregon, at almost 500 pages it's got enough to keep you amply saturated. Cheers!

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