Carrie Kalscheuer
 
April 13, 2015 | Carrie Kalscheuer

Top 5 Unexpected Food & Wine Pairings

I think just about everything pairs with Pinot Noir, with one awful exception. Pinot is light enough not to overpower food, but flavorful enough to add depth and nuance. Perhaps not every dish can have the impact that the perfect Pinot Noir pairing can have (lamb chops, Chantrelle mushrooms, pan-fried salmon - wow!), but the overwhelming result is at least pleasant, easy, and doesn't leave me with a massive headache the next morning. (The awful exception: frosted animal cookies. Don't ever try this. Ever.)

Transcendent pairings don't come around often. When this rare and wonderful event happens, it's important to give pause and relish the moment, then tell everyone you know so that they can share in the joy. And if you find something truly bizarre, unexpected and inspirational, well, you write a blog post.
 

My top 5 surprisingly transcendent pairings:

 

  1.  Mezcal and Chocolate. I have a strong affinity for both of these things. It was only a matter of time before I made the happy discovery that they are wildly perfect together.
     
  2. Aussie Shiraz and Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. Trust me on this. An old friend stumbled upon this gem and we have since tested the pairing on multiple occasions. It works. I'm not sure why, but it works.
     
  3. Chablis and Kettle Chips. Yes, everyone knows about all things fried with Champagne, but to me this is the superior pairing. Chablis' fresh acid and high minerality, yet round, rich palate is the perfect accompaniement to my ultimate guilty pleasure.
     
  4. Oregon Pinot Gris and Salsa. A great alternative to lager for Mexican feasts, especially if gluten is not your friend.
     
  5. Australian Stickies and Gazpacho Soup. Stickies are Aussie-speak for dessert wines. Paired with the high acid of hte gazpacho, this is an unexpected treat.
Time Posted: Apr 13, 2015 at 11:40 AM
Carrie Kalscheuer
 
October 21, 2014 | Carrie Kalscheuer

What makes us different

This past summer, we hosted several Linfield College students enrolled in a year-long program called the Oregon Wine Industry Experience. After touring the facility, the students were introduced to our wines and our people. As the last stop of their two-month introduction to the industry, filled with many winery and vineyard visits, tastings and tours, we had our work cut out for us. What hadn’t they already learned?

As the largest winery in Oregon, we need a large staff. More staff routinely leads to more segregated teams, a problem I hear about from many of my colleagues in the industry. So, what makes us different? Here at A to Z, we know that to be successful, we need to work together; we need to form bonds and relationships between teams, and to keep those connections healthy and vibrant in order to keep our winery healthy and vibrant. It is this collaboration that stands out to me when talking about our individual responsibilities with the Linfield students – all of us know what each other does and we interact multiples times a day, necessarily.

It’s always fun to show off our winery! It is a continually growing facility that has a deep history. But hosting the Linfield students reminds me that at the end of a rich summer program, when they’ve seen a great many facilities, there will still be something they haven’t heard – how to run a successful winery while keeping a staff of 50 engaged, happy, productive and together.

Time Posted: Oct 21, 2014 at 9:49 AM