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Julia Crowley

Julia Crowley

Julia has been in the wine industry for nearly 20 years. First through creating European wine tours, then opening her own wine bar, Julia loves writing about food & wine on her website, WineJulia.com.
juliaswine@gmail.comhttp://winejulia.comhttp://facebook.com/winejuliawinejulia

Wine Down Eugene

Wine Down Eugene January 30 – February 5

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The elusive Oregon White Truffle

Having just returned from a long weekend trip up to Salem and Portland, reflecting on the past few days, which were filled with adventures in food and wine, has me yearning to return for more – it was an incredible getaway.

On Saturday, I joined Willamette Valley Vineyards winemaker Don Crank, and Associate winemaker Tim Wilson, in a truffle patch located at the base of the vineyards at Willamette Valley Vineyards. We witnessed truffle hunters and their truffle hunting dogs in action – hunting and digging for the highly sought-after and treasured culinary delight.

Sunday afternoon and evening was spent in downtown Portland, where I reveled in food and wine bliss for several hours – first attending a super fun and enlightening food and wine pairing extravaganza at Metrovino: Red vs. White – A Battle for Tastebud Dominance, and later joining my family at the incredible Irving Street Kitchen. 

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Barrel to bar wine taps at Irving Street Kitchen

Red vs White – A Battle for Tastebud Dominance was created by wine PR pro Katie Bray, of Watershed CommunicationsMontinore Estate wines were paired with delectable small plates prepared by Metrovino chef Dustin See, while dueling Montinore vintners were there to convince us, the tasters, that their particular wine would be best paired with each dish. It was delicious, educational and a whole load of fun.

After Metrovino, my family and I were spoiled with gracious service, wine and food at the amazing Irving Street Kitchen. Not only did this Pearl District beauty have the coolest barrel to bar system I’ve ever seen, one unlike any other, but the wine selection and in-house sommelier were absolutely stellar – it was an experience that was truly savored.

With a food and wine-centric town like Portland, there was no better place to stay the night than at Hotel Vintage Plaza, where ‘wine’ just happened to be the theme. Could my weekend have been any better? Absolutely not. Follow me over to my award-winning wine blog, WineJulia.com, where I’ll be sharing my long weekend in detail, including foods experienced, wine reviews and lots of photos. Cheers!

Wine Bars, Shops and Restaurants

The Barn Light: Everyday 4-7 pm, Happy Hour specials on beer, wine and cocktails. 924 Willamette St., Eugene.

Heidi Tunnell Catering Company: Tue. bakery 10 am- 6 pm, lunch from 11 am – 2 pm and dinner from 4-7 pm; Thur. 6 pm, Family Style Dinner featuring Bacon Wrapped MEatloaf, Mashed Potatoes and Roasted Root Vegetables. Doors open at 6 pm with appetizers, excellent selection of beer and wine available for purchase.  Read about the Thurs. family-style dinners on WineJulia.com. 182 South Second St., Creswell.

16Tons (Cafe): Wed. 7-10 pm, Trivia Night; Thu. 5-7 pm free wine tasting and happy hour & movie begins at 8 pm; Every Fri. 6 pm, free live music; Sun. 3:30 pm, Superbowl at the Cafe. Every Sun. and Mon. 4-10 pm deals on growler and mason jar fills. 2864 Willamette St., Eugene.

16Tons (Taphouse): Sun.-Wed. noon – 10 pm, Thu.-Sat. noon – 12 am (except New Year’s Eve). Great selection of beer and wine. 265 East 13th Ave., Eugene.

Broadway Wine Merchants: Fri. 5-7 pm, Free Friday Wine Tasting; Tue. 4-6 pm, First Tuesday of each month – Cheese & Wine Tasting, $20 per person. Read about their wine and cheese events here. 17 Oakway Center, Eugene.

The Bier Stein: Huge selection of local and International beer. 345 E. 11 Ave., Eugene.

Wineries without Walls (wine shop & tasting room): Sat. 6-8 pm, A Night of Passion with Noble Estate Vineyard and their Passion wine, music with Jennifer Sennett-Franklin, Valentine trivia contest and photo booth.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.

Marché Provisions: Fri. 5-7 pm, free Friday wine tasting. 296 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.

Territorial Vineyards and Wine Co.: Thu. 5-11 pm, live music starts around 7 pm with Barefoot Leroy; Fri. 5-11 pm, live music starts around 7 pm. 907 West Third Ave., Eugene.

LaVelle Tasting Room at 5th Street Market: Mon. – Sat. 12-7 pm, Sun. 12–6 pm;  Thu. 5-7 pm, live music; Fri. 5-7 pm, live music. 296 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.

Ninkasi Brewing: Mon. Pints Gone Wild – 25 percent of all pint sales will go to Cascadia Wildlands; Tasting room hours: Sun.-Wed. 12-9 pm, Thu.-Sat. 12-10 pm. Indoor and outdoor seating, food available for purchase from varying food carts. 272 Van Buren St., Eugene.

The Wine Place (Yachats): Sat.12-5 pm wine tasting – Saginaw Vineyards. NOTE: For January, the shop will be closed except on Saturdays from 11 am – 5 pm. 373 N. Hwy. 101, Yachats.

SweetWaters at Valley River Inn: Every Thu. 4 – 7 pm, Free wine tasting featuring a different winery each week. 1000 Valley River Way, Eugene.

B2 Wine Bar: Happy Hour Mon.-Fri., 4-6 pm, and 9-10 pm. 2794 Shadow Dr., Eugene.

Long’s Meat Market: Fri. 4-6 pm, free wine tasting with some cheese from their deli; craft beers and Oregon wines available. 81 East 28th Ave., Eugene.

Authentica Wines: Hours are 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.  766 W. Park St., Eugene.

Sundance Wine Cellars: Fri. 5-7 pm Mario’s Frugal Friday free wine tasting; Sat. 5-7 pm, wine tasting. 2441 Hilyard St., Eugene.

Koho Bistro: Wed. Wine Wednesdays – 25 percent off bottles of wine. Happy Hour daily from 5 – 6:30 pm $1 off beers on tap, well drinks and wine. Read the Local Lunch Gals review. 2101 Bailey Hill Rd, Suite L, Eugene.

Café 440: Wed. 5 pm, Wednesday Wine Flights. Taste three whites or reds for $10.50; Mon. – Sat. 3-6 pm Happy Hour specials. For the Local Lunch Gals review, click here. 440 Coburg Rd., Eugene.

The Side Bar: Wed. Ladies Night, $1 off any glass of wine and $5 off a bottle of wine.  1680 Coburg Rd., Eugene

Ring of Fire Restaurant: Mon. 5 pm Wine Night Mondays-35 percent off all bottles of wine; Daily Happy Hour 4-6 pm. 1099 Chambers St., Eugene.

Soriah Cafe: Wed. 5 pm, *last Wednesday of the month only* Celebrate Wine Wednesday. Half off bottles of wine. 384 W. 13th 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. 1626 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.

Café Zenon: Tues., Fifty percent off bottles of wine; Mon-Fri. 5-6:30 pm, $1 off glasses of wine and pints of beer. 898 Pearl St., Eugene.

Café Lucky Noodle: Tue. 5:30-7:30 pm Wine Night – all bottles 35 percent off; complimentary wine tasting in the lobby. 207 East 5th Ave., Eugene.

Granary Wine Bar:Wed. 5 pm, $5 glass pours of house white or red. 259 E. 5th Ave., Eugene.

Wineries & Vineyards

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Sarver Winery: Fri. 4pm, Delicious Homemade Soups and vintage concert series on the big screen; Last Sat. of each month, 6 pm, Steak Night – Hors D’oeuvres, Black pepper and sea salt New York Strip or Rib Eyes topped with gorgonzola compound butter, and served with garlic and sour cream mashed red skins and homemade Caesar salad. Reservations required. Open daily 12-6 pm except Fri 12-9. 2600 Mayola Ln., Eugene.

LaVelle Vineyards (winery in Elmira): Visit the winery daily, Mon.-Thu. 12-5 pm, and Sat./Sun. 12-6 pm. 89697 Sheffler Rd., Elmira.

Sweet Cheeks: Fri. 6-9 pm, Twilight Tasting, sample pairings of Sweet Cheeks wine with Oregon-made artisan cheeses while listening to live music from 6:30-8:30 pm with Michael Conley; Sun. 12-6 pm, Mimosa Sunday with live music from 2-4 pm with Norman Mesman. 27007 Briggs Hill Rd., Eugene.

Silvan Ridge Winery: Open Daily 12-5 pm. Complimentary taste of five wines in addition to several limited wines that may be tasted for a fee. 27012 Briggs Hill Rd., Eugene.

Domaine Meriwether: Fri. 6-9 pm. Sparkling Nights – wine tasting and live music. Open Daily 11 am – 4 pm, except Fri. for Sparkling Nights. 88324 Vineyard Lane, Veneta.

King Estate: Visit the winery daily 11 am – 8 pm. 80854 Territorial Hwy., Eugene.

Saginaw Vineyard: Fri. 6-9 pm, Friday Night LIVE featuring Tony Rae & Common Ground unplugged / jazzy blues. Friday Night LIVE is held indoors for the winter months and minors are not permitted. For more information, please click here; Open daily, 11 am – 5pm. Sample their 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.

RainSong Vineyard: Two open houses a year: Memorial Day Weekend and Thanksgiving Weekend. Unique barrel bottling program. 92989 Templeton Rd., Cheshire.

Chateau Lorane: Open daily, 12-5 pm. 27415 Siuslaw River Rd., Lorane.

Pfeiffer Winery: Open Mon.-Thu. 11 am – 5 pm and Fri./Sat. 11 am – 9 pm. Warm up with their hot mulled wine on the weekends. 25040 Jaeg Rd., Junction City.

Brigadoon Wine Co.: Fri. – Sun. 12-5 pm wine tasting in their tasting room. 25166 Ferguson Rd., Junction City.

Benton-Lane: Open Daily Noon to 5pm; For a relaxed one hour wine tasting with the owner in a special wine room overlooking the vineyards, call the winery for details 541-847-5792. 23924 Territorial Hwy., Monroe.

Noble Estate: Open daily 12-5 pm. 29210 Gimpl Hill Rd., Eugene.

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. 373 North Hwy. 101, Yachats.

Spencer Creek Cellars/McBeth Vineyards: Wine Tastings in the Barn by appointment only. 541-521-4381. 85162 McBeth Rd., Eugene.

The south Willamette Valley is home to many stellar vintners that do not have tasting rooms. Check back frequently for tasting/event information on the following wineries without walls: Capitello Wines, William Rose Wines, Patchwork Cellars, Abbelone Vineyards, Stanton Vineyards, Kandarian Wine Cellars, Oakdale Cellars, Briggs Hill Winery, Iris Vineyards, Dylan’s Run, Fractal Cellars.

Upcoming Events

Heidi Tunnell Catering Co:Thursday night dinners in their on-site event center. 6:30pm, doors open at 6pm. Extensive wine list by local, handcrafted Oregon winemakers and local beers as well. 182 South Second St., Creswell.

Broadway Wine Merchants: Feb. 7, 6 pm Cheese and Wine Tasting; Feb. 8, 5-7 pm, Raptor Ridge Wine Tasting – complimentary. 17 Oakway Center, Eugene.

Domaine Meriwether: Feb. 10, 6-9 pm. Sweethearts Dinner – Fine Dining in the Wine Cellar, music with harpest Pamela Roberts, and cuisine prepared by executive chef Garrett Kirsch. $75 dollars per person / $125 dollars per couple. Limited seating. 88324 Vineyard Lane, Veneta.

Benton-Lane: Feb. 9, Heart of Willamette Wineries Association 3rd Annual Barrel Tour. Call the winery for details 541-847-5792. 23924 Territorial Hwy., Monroe.

Sweet Cheeks: Feb. 9, 7 pm. Feast in the Cellar Prix Fixe Dinner featuring Chef Heidi Tunnell, reservations required; February 14, 12-6 pm. Romancing the Vineyard live music and food featuring Crepe Cyclette. 27007 Briggs Hill Rd., Eugene.

16Tons (Cafe): Feb. 14, 6-10 pm, Party Cart Valentine’s Day Dessert and Beer Pairing. 2864 Willamette St., Eugene.

LaVelle Vineyards (winery in Elmira): Feb. 16, Annual Mardi Gras Party. 89697 Sheffler Rd., Elmira.

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