Tom Caruso
 
June 2, 2016 | Tom Caruso

Roast Chicken dinner with the 2013 REX HILL Jacob-Hart Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir

One of the most frequently asked questions that I receive in the Tasting Room is, “what is your favorite REX HILL wine?” And more often than not, my response will be a resounding, “It depends.” While one’s initial impression is that I’m playing it safe or don’t want to pick favorites, I proceed to explain that my view of wine mirrors that of my view of food—my favorite dish will typically be the one I’m most in the mood for. With that, it seems I have been dually tasked in choosing a favorite REX HILL wine and deciding what to pair it with.

Despite weather trending warmer and warmer here in the Willamette Valley, we’ve had a few chilly and rainy days thrust into the mix to remind us that it’s not quite summer. On those brisk evenings, I resort back to winter mode and crave something hearty – currently daydreaming about roasted chicken with some rosemary fingerling potatoes and a kale and cannellini bean couscous to round it out. My goodness, I’m starting to get hungry!

Having a dish in mind, it’s time to decide on the perfect pairing. A lot of different wines could go with this meal—red or white in color. In particular, even a lot of Pinot Noirs can go with this meal. After all, food and wine are made to go together! But to me there is one wine in particular that calls out: 2013 REX HILL Jacob-Hart Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir. It’s a wine that I love to explore in glass as it tends to move from a lifted dark cherry, raspberry, and violet floral/ fruit profile into more herbal and earthy components—playing very nicely with our dish of choice. There are a lot of complimentary flavors and aromatics going on here. Think of the smell of those rosemary potatoes wafting alongside fresh herbal aromas of the wine. Even more fun is the sensory experience on the palate. The mouth coating buttery texture of the cannellini bean couscous and protein from the chicken are whisked away by the fruit flavors, acidity, and whole cluster tannins of the wine. Perfection!

Time Posted: Jun 2, 2016 at 11:00 AM
Kelly Irelan
 
May 18, 2016 | Kelly Irelan

Smoked Salmon & Dill Tartine paired with our 2015 REX HILL Rosé

Spring is my favorite season of the year, and I’m going to celebrate the longer and warmer days by saying #yeswayrosé. I encourage you to drink pink this season with the my favorite REX HILL wine, the 2015 REX HILL Pinot Noir Rosé. This 100% REX HILL Estate Vineyard grown Rosé is crisp and well-balanced with notes of strawberries, figs and rose petal jam.

For effortless entertaining, pair this wine with easy to eat and finger friendly bites, like Smoked Salmon & Dill Tartine. 

Smoked Salmon & Dill Tartine:

  • Toasted bread
  • Layer of fresh chèvre
  • Layer of smoked salmon
  • Sprinkle of coarse sea salt
  • Fresh dill & shaved radish to garnish

 

Time Posted: May 18, 2016 at 10:51 AM
Leanne Bellncula
 
May 4, 2016 | Leanne Bellncula

Playing with your food - Kettle Chips part 2

I, on the other hand, have been known to be a chip fiend.  There is never a shortage of chips (Kettle) or crackers in my pantry!  So, you can imagine my delight when I was asked to be part of a Kettle Chip & Wine Pairing tasting.  However, I tend to be a purist when it comes to chips – only straight-up original Kettle Chips for this chip lover.  I was certainly skeptical at the variety of crazy flavors beautifully arranged on the platter before me.  Three crunches in, I was pleasantly surprised at how some of the most unique flavors of chips seemed to bring out the best in the wines and vice versa.  I was particularly shocked at how well the Salt & Vinegar chip paired with the A to Z Pinot Gris.  Who knew?!  That’s what I love about food and wine…  Some of the most unusual combinations sometimes make the most beautiful, unexpected pairings.  So, keep playing with your food!

Time Posted: May 4, 2016 at 2:00 PM
Jonathan Lampe
 
May 3, 2016 | Jonathan Lampe

Playing with your food - Kettle Chips part 1

College days aside, I’ve not really considered a bag of potato chips to be a meal. With the diversity of flavors seen on the grocery shelf these days, however, most of the flavor components of your favorite dish are represented. Sweetness can be found in Honey Barbeque or Maple Bacon flavors, acid in Salt & Vinegar, spicy heat in Jalapeño. Of course, they all have the salt element.

It made sense, then, when I attended a wine tasting here at the winery that took this concept and applied it to wine pairing. We were provided a variety of chips and wine with which to create pairings and see how the flavors came together.

I often mention to folks in the tasting room how well our Chardonnay goes with salt in food. It was a pleasant reminder to see that the humble, plain potato chip could have quite an effect on the flavor of the Chardonnay. It also provided me inspiration for my next movie night snack.

Even more interesting was how the Barbeque flavor and the Maple Bacon both paired so well with Pinot Noir. Both flavors provided a sweetness that complimented the earthy tartness of the wine such that I plan to open a Pinot the next time I heat up the grill.

Perhaps the best part was that this exercise is easily and inexpensively replicated. If you enjoy hosting wine tasting nights with friends, pick up a few bags of chips and see what flavor combinations surprise you.

Time Posted: May 3, 2016 at 5:13 PM
Katie McLennan
 
February 8, 2016 | Katie McLennan

Pair Pinot Noir with your next cheese plate

Honestly, my favorite pairing with Pinot Noir is a nice array of charcuterie and artisan cheeses. It's my tiny piece of heaven that takes only a few minutes for this busy mom of two to throw together after a long day at the office. These busy parenting years will slow down eventually and maybe then I'll spend a little more time around the stove but for now, I love my meat and cheese platter!

Our friends at Cabot Creamery have put together an easy-to-follow infographic on How to Make a Cheese Plate here.

Photo by Cabot Creamery.

Time Posted: Feb 8, 2016 at 4:48 PM
Shelli Brinson Fowler
 
December 16, 2015 | Shelli Brinson Fowler

Drinking a White Christmas?

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas, but which wine would pair best with snow?

Why is it that we drink more red wine when the weather gets colder? Let's take a look at it from the other side - why do we drink more white wine when the weather gets warmer?

It could be partly due to the fact that we change our eating habits when it gets warmer. We eat lighter in the spring/summer to fit inot our shorts and skirts. Some of the white varietals are a more typical pairing to salads and cold dishes. Also, when it's hot ouside, a nice chilled wine hits the spot.

When the weather starts to get colder, football games are on and hunting season begins. I can't wait to make chili and cornbread, cassoulet, pot roast, smoked meats, or any meat that I can roast or braise all day. These types of low and slow cooked meats with roasted root veggies are so often paired best with red wine.

We know what we are accustomed to drinking with specific types of food, but what if we thought outside of the box?

My husband and I conducted an in-home experiment. Putting our notions of ordinary pairings aside, and fooling our senses, would we drink white in the winter? We allowed our white wine to get to room temperature, and tasted wines blind. Some of our findings were interesting. We didn't mind most of the fuller bodied wines, aged in at least some oak, at room temperature as long as the wine was of quality. The lighter bodied wines, which had been aged in stainless steel, weren't as good at room temperature as their acid became too prominent. What we did miss was the darker berry fruit, spice, and herbal componenets generally found in red wines.

The consensus was that we do enjoy eating and drinking seasonally and customarily. There is a reason for the season, as they say. I will no longer wonder or try to reinvent how people have paired wines with food for decades. I will look forward to diversifying my drinking syle, as the seasons change, in the same way that I look forward to putting on sandals in the summer and sweaters in the winter.

 

Shop our reds today!

Time Posted: Dec 16, 2015 at 10:00 AM
Mike Willison
 
February 27, 2015 | Mike Willison

The REX HILL Thistle

The thistle has long been a symbol for nobility of character.  The Order of the Thistle is the highest chivalric order of Scotland.  It is associated with tenacity and strong will — those who wound it are punished.  It is an example of the delicate balance often found in nature between beauty and something prickly. The sharp spines and pricklers protect against the trespasses of anyone attempting to pluck away its beautiful flower heads or to eat it. Many species attract goldfinches and are nectar sources for bees and butterflies.  The thistle has a tenacious grip on the land that supports it, and a defiant ability to remain and flourish in spite of efforts to remove it. 

We incorporated the thistle into our REX HILL logo to represent our determination to make wines of the highest quality regardless of obstacles. The gnarly vines, looking like dead wood in the winter, pull nutrients from deep in the soil to bud and grow finally offering delicious, delicate berries at harvest. The thistle reflects our commitment to make beautiful, superlative wines from grapes grown sustainably revealing an evident sense of place and made without engineering.


Time Posted: Feb 27, 2015 at 11:21 AM
Deb Hatcher
 
December 19, 2014 | Deb Hatcher

Keep it local

Two years ago, Ed King invited a few leaders from the Oregon beer, wine and spirits industries to discuss common interests. The result? A non-profit Oregon Craft Beverage Council to promote awareness of the jobs and monies the craft beverage industries contribute to Oregon's economy. Additionally, the collaborative group can now offer a unified opinion on state legislative issues of concern to our industries. Ed produced a short video that aired during the holidays on cable television in 2012 and 2013. This year an awareness campaign, "Keep it Local," launched at the end of October to remind Oregonians of their many local beverage choices for the holidays. Billboards, window stickers, bottle neckers and shelf talkers can be found throughout the state and t-shirts can be purchased in our tasting room.
 

  Distilleries Breweries Wineries
Total Oregon distilleries, breweries, wineries 63 214 545
Total number of jobs created 350 6,500 13,500
Economic boost (2013) ~ 3 BILLION

 

  

 

Time Posted: Dec 19, 2014 at 11:00 AM
Emily Sadler
 
November 20, 2014 | Emily Sadler

My first harvest experience

High visibility safety vest, check.
A to Z Sasquatch & B Corp pins for said high visibility safety vest, check.
GoPro and camera ready for action, check.
Dodge a forklift, check.
Wash harvest dishes, check.
Harvest Party, check.

At Harvest, the winery is buzzing. So many new faces and new trucks with great looking fruit are rolling in. Don't blink because you might miss something!

I observed and documented the hustle & bustle outside the building for my first harvest. As a member of the Marketing Department, I had the opportunity to take some videos of picking, sorting and punch downs to share with all of our social media followers. The fruit was beautiful this year, and everyone continues to comment on that. The smell of grapes fermenting was in the air, and I enjoyed how alive the winery became during harvest with exciting things happening everywhere. It was fun to see everyone come together to create what we're all so passionate about: our incredible wine!

Time Posted: Nov 20, 2014 at 4:04 PM