Celebration Oregon!

Yesterday brought the annual Celebration Oregon! event, an evening to recognize exceptional Oregon wine, winemakers, and chefs. Held on the opening night of the Oregon State Fair, it served to present the winners of the 2007 Oregon Wine Competition.

Desilet, Micheal, and myself decided to check the event out and we were immediately struck by the quality of culinary delights that were present to match the wine that was being poured. A majority of the wineries that entered wine into the competition were present, and many of them had the owner or winemaker pouring. The event felt like a private garden right in the middle of the fairgrounds -- and we tried some great wine.

To start off, the winners:

Best of Show:
Best of Classification:

Gold Medal Winners:

I tried the majority of these wines and particularly enjoyed the Firesteed Gris (released today retail) and the Orchard Heights Late Harvest Pinot Gris. Some other wines of note that I especially enjoyed included La Velle Pinot Noir and Riesling (both bronze medal winners) and Airlie 7 (a silver medal winning white blend--mostly riesling and muller-thurgau).

While Firesteed took the show, the Willamette Valley Vineyards portfolio (including Griffin Creek and Tualatin Estate) had a great night. In addition to their best of classification and two golds above, silver medal winners included the Griffin 05 Cab Franc and 05 Syrah and WVV 06 Pinot Gris and 06 Riesling. Bronze medal winners included the Griffin Creek 06 Cab Sauv, 02 Merlot, 04 Malbec, 04 Viognier, and 05 Tempranillo as well as WVV 04 Chard, 05 Estate Pinot Noir, and 06 Pinot Noir.