Monday, August 22, 2011

The Epic Mother of All Wineapalooza Trips--Day One

Saturday, July 23, 2011. (AKA Day One)
We flew into Portland, Oregon and rented our wine-mobile. A white Jeep  Liberty. This seemed big enough to hold our wine purchases and our suitcases. (We are not small people. We are not light packers. We love our wine.) And we were a very inauspicious start.

I love Marriott and all their various low- to high- end hotels, but really...when you make a reservation they should have to tell you there is construction going on. We got stuck in some triangular shaped room with one tiny window out of which we were supposed to see a "city view." I'm sure we would have if only that forest of trees was removed (and honestly, if she was going to lie about the view, "water view" would have been more credible and I could see the river through the trees...if I craned.)  No matter, we were here for the wine. And the food. Portland is a foodie paradise.

Luckily for us, my step-brother Michael (complicated family, I'm not going to stop to explain) lives there and was available to show us around. We had a light (ish!) lunch and beer at Deschutes Brewery and then headed to heaven Powell's bookstore. If you love books and you have never been to Powell's...well, you need to remedy that soon. I don't care where you live. Go To Powell's (Portland, OR or Chicago...either one works.) I made a valiant effort to support several authors (including the earlier mentioned Lionel Shriver) and made it out under $200. Two hours in and the Jeep Liberty was getting loaded.

And speaking of loaded...we headed to dinner at Clyde Common-- a trendy, gastro-pubby place that lured me in with this astounding looking fried oyster po' boy in an ad I saw. Alas, no fried oyster po'boys for dinner. I got over that though with a nice Triennes Rose Nans-les-Pins (French rose' )wine and the delicious spiced popcorn appetizer followed by a pasta dish that I recall as very good...but can't remember!  Good food and atmosphere there though, so if you're ever in Portland stop on by. Oh, and please be wearing a colorful yet sun-faded short-sleeved t-shirt. It's what all the boys do. (I just don't understand how a city that gets, oh, 2 1/2 days of sun per year can have a uniform of sun-faded t-shirts. But they do.)

Finally, it was time for an urban winery and a little (or, um, a lot of) wine tasting. We headed to Enso Urban Winery on Stark Street. This was a winery truly started in a garage and now moved to...well, a more commercial garage!

We tasted six wines, including....

  • The West Coast blended Resonate rose' (yes, please! a blend of Mourvedre, Syrah and Grenache )
  • A Pinot Gris
  • RESONATE Red #2 (50% WA Counoise and 50% WA Sangiovese) 
A bottle of that last one was liberated into our Liberty. 

I mentioned our inauspicious start? Chris had a very upset stomach in the midst of our tasting (not due to the wines.) So his notes were is my memory, especially since this is when I learned my camera batteries had exhausted themselves. I am quite clear though that thiis was a cool place, with funky artwork and lovingly handcrafted wines. I look forward to opening a bottle again soon. You could say it resonated with me.


  1. Hello,
    I have a question about your blog. Please email me!

  2. Sounds like you and I have similar wine tasting experiences. Not as in locale, but as in personal condition. Of course, I could be wrong. I don't remember. This bookstore you speak of -- I'm intrigued. Will have to check out Chicago. By the title of the blog, I see the breast cancer treatment did go well. I'm glad for it. Thanks for stopping by my blog and for imparting some humor on me here.

  3. And my dog's name was Seamus as well.

  4. Laura--was your Seamus really (adorably) badly behaved as well?
    And thanks for stopping by!

  5. Sounds like you are on a fun journey. Loved your description of the Marriott. The bookstore sounds do the wines! I wouldn't mind a glass myself!

  6. Sounds like fun....

    we got engaged in Portland a couple of years ago (at a Starbucks of all places), and I luuuv Powells!


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