Yesterday I went to McMinnville, Oregon with Chuck Humble for the International Pinot Noir Celebration. We tasted nearly every wine there (totallying something like 75), had some great food (who knew buffalo could be so tender), and generally enjoyed ourselves in some wonderful weather.
At the end of the day, there were only a couple of surprises. One surprise for me was that the French Burgundies didn't seem to show very well next to the Oregon Pinot Noirs -- the style of winemaking (less fruit, more spice) just seemed less appealing on a hot day. A second was the $18/bottle Firesteed -- it was showing in a league with many $40 and $50 bottles and was a wonderfully drinkable wine. Finally was a surprise from Switzerland -- the Fromm below.
Here are my picks, most of which aren't available yet, but all of which promise to be wonderful:
Domaine Marc Roy, France
2001 Gevrey-Chambertin, Clos Prieur
+33 03 80 51 81 13
Hitching Post Wines,
2001 Demuth Vineyard,
Elk Cove Vineyards,
Sokol Blosser Winery,
2001 Estate, Old Vineyard Block
2000 Estate Reserve
On another note, the IPNC had a table where they were tasting three wines made from the same grapes, picked the same day from the same vineyard. There was an amazing difference among the three -- truly a sign of the winemaker's art.