–Julia Crowley, EDN
T’was the night before Christmas, in the famed Willamette Valley,
The corks were a popping, from Pfeiffer Villa to King Estate Galley.
The Oregon Pinot’s were lined up with care,
With aromas and flavors that friends would soon share.
But before he could tap what was under that cap,
He realized it would be better after a long winters nap.
So he headed to the cellar to find his best sellers,
and thought an older vintage would for sure be stellar.
On his way to the cellar he heard some commotion,
And ran into the vineyard to see what was in motion.
There he was, it was Santa,
He had just come from Atlanta.
He was tired and stressed, his white beard was a mess.
“Come in from the cold,” said the winemaker, “Sit by the fire and unfold,
The reindeer can rest, while you get back your zest.”
So the winemaker and Santa escaped from the snow,
And come to find out, Santa loves Pinot Noir don’t you know!
So the two sat and talked while enjoying some wine
It was surreal, incredible, and simply divine.
Santa was at ease and suddenly had back his shine
Just before the guests would arrive to wine and dine.
He picked up his hat and with his glass did a clink,
Santa thanked him profusely and gave him a wink.
The winemaker didn’t have much time to think,
Santa turned on his heel before he could blink.
“This wine was so good, it’s simply delicious,
I feel pretty good and rather quite ambitious.”
“I’d like to take with me some bottles to share,
But hurry up, it’s getting late, I must get back out there!”
The winemaker grabbed several bottles for Santa,
He even threw one in for Santa’s elf, Anna Banta.
He followed him out and then heard Santa say,
“Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now Prancer and Vixen!”
“On Comet! On Cupid! On Donner and Blitzen!”
“Let’s hurry, let’s go, we’ve got goodies to deliver,
Including this here Pinot that needs to go up the McKenzie River!”
And just before he disappeared and was out of sight,
he looked down at the vineyard with great delight,
“Merry Christmas to you, here’s a joyous good cheer,
I’ll see you again the same time next year!”
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas! ~ Julia
Wine Bars & Wine Shops
Wineries without Walls (wine shop & tasting room): Fri. 3-6 pm, Last wine tasting of 2011, Cotton Wood Winery returns with their fantastic selection of wines. This wine shop and tasting room showcases local wines and is located inside the Fern Ridge Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center in Veneta. 24949 Hwy. 126, Veneta.The last tasting event and the last day the shop will be open for 2011.
Café Soriah: Wed., celebrate Wine Wednesdays. All day, half off bottles of wine, including local notable names such as BrickHouse, Capitello, King Estate and Broadley; Thu. and Fri. 9:30 pm, a staged reading of Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” by renowned local actor David Stuart Bull with Celtic Music by Chico Schwall on guitar & vocals and Linda Danielson on violin & vocals. Admission $10. Bartenders have put together a special drink list for the holidays. 384 W. 13th Ave., Eugene.
Territorial Vineyards and Wine Co.: Thu. 5-11 pm, special holiday show with Timothy Patrick; Fri. 5-11 pm, music starts around 7 pm with Upstate Trio (Upstate New Yorkers jam ); December Art: original oils by Richard Quigley. 907 West Third Ave., Eugene.
LaVelle Club Room at 5th Street Market: Wed. 5-8 pm, half off glass pours for ladies; Thurs. and Fri. 6-8 pm, live music with Gus Russell. 296 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.
16 Tons (Taphouse): Dec. 21, 5-6:30 pm. Tieton Cider Works Tasting and several Ciders on tap 265 East Thirteenth Ave., Eugene.
The Wine Place: Sat. 12 – 5 pm, Stop in to do last minute shopping and sample wines, have a glass, visit with friends, and enjoy the art gallery next door.; The loft above The Wine Cellar is the tasting room for J. Scott Cellars. 373 North Hwy. 101, Yachats.
Authentica Wines: Thu. 5-7 pm, Special Holiday Tasting and Seasonal Celebration of some very special wines and discounted prices; Tue. – Fri. 11 am – 6 pm, and Sat. 10 am – 5 pm. Wine tasting available every Saturday at the Wine Bar, and on the first Friday 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 W. Park St., Eugene.
Marche Restaurant: Dec. 24, 5-8 pm. Christmas Eve Feast. $40 per person. Call for reservations 541-342-3612. 296 East Fifth Ave., Eugene.
Ambrosia Restaurant and Bar: Mon. – Fri. 4-6 pm Happy Hour, tap beers $2 and house wines $4.50. 174 East Broadway Ave., Eugene.
Broadway Wine Merchants: Fri. 5-7 pm, Free Friday Wine Tasting; 17 Oakway Center, Eugene.
Sundance Wine Cellars: Fri. 5-7 pm, Frugal Friday wine tasting with Mario; Sat. 5-7 pm, wine tasting featuring local and regional wines; 2441 Hilyard St., Eugene.
Steelhead Brewery: Sun. – Sat. 11:30 am – 11 pm, open later on Fri. and Sat., In addition to their own wine, Steelhead Red, you’ll find almost 20 wines by the glass, including 5H, Hinman, Erath and King Estate. 199 East 5th Ave., Eugene.
Le Bar at 5th Street Public Market/Marché: This new bar has an incredible wine list. 296 East 5th Ave., Eugene.
Marché Provisions: Fri. 5-7 pm, Free weekly wine tasting. 296 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.
Mac’s at the Vets Club: Wed. 6-9 pm, Wine, Jazz & Variety Show with Gus Russell & Paul Biondi. A different Oregon winery is featured each week. $8 Burger and Brew night, too. 1626 Willamette St., Eugene.
Café 440: Wed., all day. Wednesday Wine Flights, taste three holiday whites or holiday reds for $10.50. 440 Coburg Rd., Eugene.
B2 Wine Bar: Happy hour Mon.-Fri., 4-6 pm, and 9-10 pm Loads of Northwest wines offered here. 2794 Shadow Dr., Eugene.
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. 454 Willamette St., Eugene.
Cork and Bottle Shoppe: Fri. 4 pm, free weekly wine or beer tasting. The Cork & Bottle Shoppe is one of Oregon’s only liquor stores that carries a large selection of local and international wine and craft beer, in addition to liquor. 812 Beltline Rd., Springfield.
Capella Market: Fri. 4-6 pm, Hard Cider Tasting with 2 Towns Cider (Corvallis); Sat. 4-6 pm, Wine Tasting with Foris Winery. 2489 Willamette St., Eugene
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. 3443 Hilyard St., Eugene.
Café Zenon: Tues., Fifty percent off bottles of wine; Mon-Fri. 5-6:30 pm, $1 off glasses of wine and pints of beer. Find King Estates’ Domaine Pinot Gris and Capitello’s Sauvignon Blanc here at half off on Tuesdays. 898 Pearl St., Eugene.
Izumi Sushi and Grill: Izumi has great sushi and they offer local wine and beer from Hinman, King Estate, Ninkasi and Oakshire. 2773 Shadow View Dr., Eugene.
Sabai Café and Bar: Wines by the glass, $6 and under; excellent local wines from Territorial, King Estate, Capitello and Benton-Lane. 27 Oakway Center, Eugene.
June Restaurant and Bar: Tue. – Sat. 5-6 pm Happy Hour. Their wine list has some great local wines. 1591 Willamette St., Eugene.
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. Twenty-five varieties of wine for $25 dollars. 2645 Willamette St., Eugene.
Kiva Grocery: Wine department focuses on affordable Northwest wines, small European wines and organic wines. Ten percent off mixed cases, 15 percent off unbroken cases. 125 W. 11th, Eugene.
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. 207 East 5th Ave., Eugene.
Granary Wine Bar: Wed., all day, $5 glass pours of house white or red. Find Patchwork Cellars’ delicious Pinot Noir here. 259 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.
Cornucopia Maize Lounge: Daily happy hour 3-6 pm – “3/3/3 at 3” special, three-dollar micros, wells and wine. 73 E. 13th Ave., Eugene.
Wineries and Vineyards
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. 27007 Briggs Hill Rd., Eugene.
Benton-Lane Winery: 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. 23924 Territorial Hwy., Monroe.
Pfeiffer Vineyards: Open Mon.-Thu. 11 am – 5 pm and Fri./Sat. 11 am – 9 pm, Watch the games on the big screen in the tasting room while sipping Pfeiffer wine by the fireplace. 25040 Jaeg Rd., Junction City.
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. 27012 Briggs Hill Rd., Eugene.
King Estate: 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. 80854 Territorial Hwy., Eugene.
Sarver Winery: Winter hours: Mon.-Thu. by appointment, Fri.-Sun., 12-6 pm. Sample the 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. 2600 Mayola Ln., Eugene.
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. 27415 Siuslaw River Rd., Lorane.
J. Scott Cellars: Tasting room located in The Wine Place in Yachats. Be sure to stop by and taste these excellent small boutique handmade Rhone varietals from the Pacific Northwest. Specializing in Roussanne, Viognier, Petite Sirah, Syrah and Cabernet…and a little Pinot Noir. 373 North Hwy. 101, Yachats.
Abbelone Vineyards: Another fabulous winery without walls; check back frequently to find out where you can sample their delicious Pinot Noir.
Brigadoon Wine Co.: Winter hours 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. 25166 Ferguson Rd., Junction City.
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. 89697 Sheffler Rd., Elmira.
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.
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, Wineries without Walls in the Fern Ridge Chamber of Commerce & Authentica, and in restaurants Marché and Eugene Country Club.
Noble Estate: Open 7 days/week, 12-5 pm. Tasting room with beautiful patio and gorgeous view,. 29210 Gimpl Hill Rd., Eugene.
Briggs Hill Winery: A winery without walls. Check back frequently to see where and when they will be offering samples of their wine.
Iris Vineyards: Mon.- Fri., 11 am – 3 pm. Stop by their state of the art winery and tasting room in Cottage Grove. Three-dollar tasting fee includes free wine glass, cheese and crackers. 195 Palmer Ave., Cottage Grove.
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.
Dylan’s Run: Another winery without walls. Keep an eye out for tastings at the Fern Ridge Chamber of commerce, Wineries without Walls.
Save the Date or Reserve Now
LaVelle Vineyards in Elmira: Dec. 31, New Year’s Eve Murder Mystery Dinner and Dance. $99 per person includes three-course meal prepared by Field to Table Catering, a three-act play and round-trip transportation from Valley River Center if you choose to use it. Seating is limited and advance ticket purchase is required. 89697 Sheffler Rd., Elmira.
Red Agave: Dec. 31, New Year’s Eve Celebration, 4 course meal served with a glass of bubbly. Call for reservations. 541-683-2206. 454 Willamette St., Eugene.
Spencer Creek Cellars/McBeth Vineyards: Starting in January, by appointment only,
Wine Tastings in the Barn. 541-521-4381. 85162 McBeth Rd., Eugene.
King Estate Winery: Jan 2, 12:30 pm, Rose Bowl Viewing Party. Fifty Dollars Tower Club Members, Fifty-Five Dollars Non Members. Call for reservations. 541-942-9874. 80854 Territorial Rd., Eugene.
16Tons (Union Cafe/Supreme Bean): Jan. 5, 5:30 or 8 pm, 2 sessions available for Cheese Wars III. 2864 Willamette St. #500, Eugene.