I love this time of year. The leaves on the trees are brilliant hues of orange, red and yellow, the air is crisp and refreshing, and the smell of burning wood lingers in the starry filled evening skies. It’s also when the South Willamette Valley wineries release their Pinot Noir’s and other decadent red wines that are sure to warm you up from the dipping temperatures.
On Saturdays in the Fall, Pfeiffer Vineyards is the ultimate place to drink premium Pinot Noir while watching Oregon Ducks running back LaMichael James run, say 257 yards or so, for another celebrated touchdown. Not only can you watch the game in their tasting room on a big screen television, but you can sit fireside with a glass of the Pfeiffer’s famed Blue Dot Reserve Pinot Noir. The 2008 Blue Dot Reserve is very well rounded and has a great depth of character. It’s a full-bodied Pinot Noir that is the perfect accompaniment with many of the comfort foods that are commonly enjoyed in the Fall, and it’s definitely a delicious beverage to delight in while watching the number 4 ranked team in the nation!
Another winery that offers comfortable fireside seating is Sweet Cheeks Winery. Here you can enjoy sitting outside at one of their fire-pit tables while looking over the gorgeous Briggs Hill Valley, or you can take advantage of the cozy wood burning fireplace that’s located inside the comfortable and inviting tasting room. Either way, you’re sure to appreciate their fabulous 2009 Vintage Pinot Noir. Silky smooth in the mouth, Sweet Cheeks Pinot Noir is earthy and full bodied with aromas of cherries, vanilla and pie spice.
King Estate Winery also has fireside seating both inside and outside of their exquisite tasting room, and their selection of delicious Pinot Noir’s will keep you coming back for more. I love to sit on the patio next to the large outdoor fireplace while savoring the luscious 2009 King Estate Bradshaw Vineyards Designate Pinot Noir. They also offer the King Estate Signature Pinot Noir, Domaine Pinot Noir, Acrobat Pinot Noir, and Next Pinot Noir. Ranging in price and flavors, it’s a given that at least one of these excellent Pinot’s will fit your budget while tantalizing your taste buds.
If you’re like me, and love the colors, scents and red wines of Fall, head out to one of these three exceptional wineries for some relaxing, fireside downtime while sipping choice locally grown and produced Pinot Noirs that will undoubtedly warm you up. Cheers! ~Julia
Wine Bars & Wine Shops
16 Tons (Union Cafe/Supreme Bean location): Sat. and Sun. 12-10 pm 2nd Annual Winter and Strong Ale Festival. 70+ beers featuring some of the strongest beers on the planet.
Le Bar at 5th Street Public Market/Marché: Thu. 6p Beaujolais Nouveau Celebration. Wine tasting in the bar along with Beaujolais bites. (Beaujolais Nouveau is a red wine made from Gamay grapes grown in the Beaujolais region of France. Nov 17 is a worldwide celebration of this red wine.
Marché Restaurant: Thu. French Regional Dinner featuring Beaujolais & Lyon; Sun. 6:30 pm Family Style Supper with salad, main course and dessert for $25 per person. For reservations, call 541-342-3612
Marché Provisions: Thu. 4-6 pm Beaujolais Party in Provisions with wine tasting, live music and snacks.
Wineries without Walls (wine shop & tasting room): Fri. and Sat. all day Holiday Bazaar at the Fern Ridge Chamber of Commerce with extended wine tasting hours; Fri. 3-6 pm Lone Oak Vineyard; Sat. 2-6 pm J. Scott Cellars & Noble Estate. This wine shop and tasting room showcases local wines and is located inside the Fern Ridge Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center in Veneta.
Long’s Meat Market: Fri. 4-6 pm Free Wine Tasting
McMenamin’s Breweries (all locations): Sat. all day Terminator Stout celebrates 26 years. $2 pints all day.
Mac’s at the Vet’s Club: Wed. 6-9 pm. Wine, Jazz & Variety Show with Gus Russell & Paul Biondi. A different Oregon winery is featured each week.
Authentica Wines: Tue-Fri 11 am – 6 pm and Sat. 10 am – 5 pm Wine Tasting available every Sat. at the Wine Bar and on the first Fri. of each month during the Art Walk. With a focus on artisan, small production wines for every budget, you’re bound to find something you love at this wine shop. 766 West Park St., Eugene.
Territorial Vineyards & Wine Co.: Thu. Open 5-11 pm – music starts around 7 pm with John Shipe; Fri. 5-11 pm – Third Friday BBQ and music that starts around 7 pm with Jerry Zybach (Blues). November Art: original oils by Richard Quigley
Oakshire Brewing: Sat. 12-4 pm newly remodeled tasting room will be open and food is available for purchase from Delacata Food Cart.
Café 440: Wed. All day. Wednesday Wine Flights for the month of November: California Rodney Strong red Wines and Oregon whites from Erath, Montinore and Stone Wolf. Three pours for $10.50.
Bier Stein: Wed. 6-9 pm Hats off to Homebrewers – bring your best homebrew to Bier Stein and they will transport it to Bend for a thorough Deschutes Brewery Sensory Panel evaluation. Prizes will be awarded.
B2 Wine Bar: Happy hour is M-F 4-6 pm and 9-10 pm; Thu. and Sat. Outdoor BBQ. Loads of northwest wines offered here; Fri. 8pm live music with The Valentines
Broadway Wine Merchants: Fri. 5-7 pm Free Friday Wine Tasting
LaVelle Club Room at 5th Street Market: Open during construction! Wed. 5-8 pm half off glass pours for ladies; Thurs. and Fri. 6-8 pm Live music.
Sam’s Place Tavern: Sat. watch Oregon and OSU games; Every booth has its own flat screen TV in addition to 22 plasma TV’s – Sports bar with a great wine list, 21 glass pours, all under $7! Wine list includes some excellent Oregon & northwest wines.
Red Agave: Excellent wine list including Oregon’s finest from King Estate, Territorial, Evesham Wood and Cristom to name just a few, It’s impressive.
Ambrosia Restaurant and Bar: Mon. – Fri. 4-6 pm Happy Hour wine and drink specials.
Cork & Bottle Shoppe: Fri. 4 pm free wine or beer tasting weekly. The Cork & Bottle Shoppe is one of Oregon’s only liquor stores that carry a large selection of local and international wine and craft beer in addition to liquor. 812 Beltline Rd. Springfield.
Sundance Wine Cellars: Fri. 5-7 pm themed Frugal Friday wine tasting with Mario; Sat. 5-7 pm featuring local and regional wineries – wineries announced the day of on their Facebook page.
Jiffy Market: Fri. 5-7 pm Free wine tasting, house picks and pours; Sat. 6-10 pm. Purchase a whole sandwich from the deli and receive a Ninkasi pint for $2!
Café Zenon: Tues. 50 percent off bottles of wine; Mon-Fri. 5-6:30 pm $1 off glasses of wine and pints of beer. Find King Estate’s Domaine Pinot Gris and Capitello’s Sauvignon Blanc here – half off on Tuesdays!!
Izumi Sushi & Grill: Like sushi & wine? Izumi’s got great sushi and they offer local wine and beer from Hinman, King Estate, Ninkasi and Oakshire.
Sabai Café & Bar: Wines by the glass $6 and under. Excellent local wines from Territorial, King Estate, Capitello and Benton-Lane.
Agate Alley Laboratory: Sat. 10 pm Late Night at The Lab with $1 off glass pour wine, $3 well drinks and pints, $9.50 pitchers & appetizer special. 25 varieties of wine for $25 dollars.
Capella Market: Fri. 4-6 pm Beer Tasting with Pyramid/Mactarnahan’s (Portland).
Kiva Grocery: Wine Department focuses on affordable northwest wines, small European wines and organic wines. 10 percent off mixed case, 15 percent off unbroken cases.
Café Soriah: Wed. Celebrate Wine Wednesdays! All day half off bottles of wine, including local notable names such as: BrickHouse, Capitello, King Estate, Broadley!
Café Lucky Noodle: Tue. 5:30-7:30 pm Wine Night – all bottles 35 percent off. Complimentary wine tasting in the lobby. Excellent wine list.
Granary Wine Bar: Wed. all day $5 glass pours of house white or red. Find Patchwork Cellars delicious Pinot Noir here.
Cornucpia Maize Lounge: Daily Happy Hour 3-6 pm – 3 3 3 at 3 special! $3 micros, wells, and wine.
Wineries and Vineyards
Benton-Lane Winery: Sun. 11 am – 5 pm Olive Oil tasting with Olive Grand; Open Daily 11 am – 5 pm Enjoy one of the Top 100 wines of the World: Benton-Lane 2010 Pinot Gris! Available in the tasting room by taste, glass or bottle.
Pfeiffer Vineyards: Open Mon.-Thu. 11 am – 5 pm and Fri./Sat. 11 am – 9 pm Watch the Ducks and Beavers on the big screen in the tasting room while sipping Pfeiffer wine by the fireplace.
Silvan Ridge Winery: Open daily 12-5 pm, Fri. 12-9 pm. Complimentary taste of five wines in addition to several limited wines that may be tasted for a fee.
King Estate: King Estate is open Daily 11 am-8 pm. Sample some of Oregon’s finest wine, dine on gourmet cuisine, and enjoy a valley view that’s unmatched. Their Acrobat Pinot Gris was recently Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Week!
Sarver Winery: Winter hours: Mon – Thu. by appointment, Fri.-Sun. 12-6 pm. Sample their different styles of Pinot Gris produced from their 25-year old estate vines along with full bodied reds like Cabernet, Syrah and Petite Sirah while taking in an unobstructed view of the Cascades.
Chateau Lorane: Open daily 12-5 pm. Stop by and taste some of their multiple award winners: Melon De Bourgogne, Petit Verdot, Viognier, Asian Girl Merlot, Zinfandel, Sauvignon Blanc and their double award-winning Red Bordeaux blend: Entourage, just to name a few.
J. Scott Cellars: Sat. 2-6 pm wine tasting at Wineries without Walls in the Fern Ridge chamber of commerce; New tasting room located in The Wine Place in Yachats! Be sure to stop by and taste his excellent small boutique handmade Rhone varietals from the Pacific Northwest. Specializing in Roussanne, Viognier, Petite Sirah, Syrah and Cabernet…and a little Pinot Noir!
Abbelone Vineyards: Another fabulous winery without walls – check back frequently to find out where you can sample their delicious Pinot Noir.
Sweet Cheeks: Fri. 6-9 pm Twilight Tasting – sample pairings of Sweet Cheeks wine with Oregon-made artisan cheeses while listening to live music; Sun. 12-6 pm Mimosa Sundays – Fine sparkling wine and live music from 2-4 pm. Bring your own brunch!
Brigadoon Wine Co.: Fri.-Sun. 12-5 pm or by appointment. Call 541-998-8708. Try Brigadoon’s three excellent wines: a Pinot Blanc and two Pinot Noirs, which can now be enjoyed on their lovely deck with a view, or if it’s raining, you’ll be invited into their kitchen!
LaVelle Vineyards (winery in Elmira): Friday Night Flights is officially over for the winter season, but it will be back soon! Visit the winery daily, Mon. – Fri. 12-5 pm and Sat. – Sun. 12-6 pm.
Saginaw Vineyards: Open daily 11 am – 5pm. Sample their delicious traditional style wines in their tasting room located in the original building of a 1905 farmstead. They also specialize in farm-fresh fruit wines! 80247 Delight Valley School Rd, Cottage Grove. Just 15 minutes south of Eugene at Exit 176 off the I-5. Call 541-942-1364 for more information.
Stanton Vineyards: Another local “winery without walls”, so keep an eye out for events where Charlie Stanton will be pouring his delicious wines. Bottles sold at Sundance, Market of Choice & Authentica and in restaurants Marché and Eugene Country Club.
Noble Estate: Sat. 2-6 pm wine tasting at Wineries without Walls in the Fern Ridge chamber of Commerce; The winery is open 7 days a week 12-5 pm.Tasting room with beautiful new patio and gorgeous view.
Briggs Hill Winery: Fri. 4-6 pm tasting at the Wineries without Walls wine shop and tasting bar inside the Fern Ridge Chamber of Commerce.
Iris Vineyards: Mon.-Fri. 11 am – 3 pm. Stop by their state of the art winery and tasting room in Cottage Grove. $3 tasting fee includes free wine glass and cheese and crackers. 541-942-5993
Patchwork Cellars: Christian Fox, owner of Patchwork Cellars pours his excellent wine at certain events around town. Check back often for his schedule of tastings.
Capitello Wines: Another local winery without walls, so keep an eye out on Capitello’s Facebook page for upcoming events and tastings.
Save the Date or Reserve Now
Sam’s Party Shuttle: Nov. 25 11:30 am – 5 pm Black Friday Wineries Tour. Round trip transportation to Domaine Meriwether, LaVelle, Sarver and Sweet Cheeks, tasting flights at each winery, 2 logo wine glasses. $50 per person call Denise at 541-221-8592 to reserve your seat.
Saginaw Vineyard: Dec. 2, 6-9 pm Friday Night Live in the Barn featuring live music with Petri Dish. $10 cover charge includes wine tasting and simple hors d’oeuvres.
Silvan Ridge Winery:Dec. 3, 6:30-9:30 pm “Dead in the Sled” Murder Mystery Dinner.
Broadway Wine Merchants: Dec. 10, 5 pm to closing – 2011 Bubble Bash! Taste a wealth of delicious Champagne. Pricing will be at its best for Holiday enjoyment and gifting.
Sundance Wine Cellars: Dec. 10, 5-7 pm Wine Tasting with Benton-Lane Winery.