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Women Wine Makers featured at The Merc.

If you missed our women winemakers series this month, never fear, we are still flush with these amazing wines.

We started off the month with sparkling wines, from the Ancestral Method/Pet Nat of Syrah from Final Girl Wines of California to Champagne from Marie Copinet of France. My favorite thing about the bubbles tasting, besides all of the wonderful people who came to taste with me, was the variety. Whether an experienced wine aficionado, a newbie, or even a casual taster, I thoroughly love to watch sharing the sensory journey of wine tasting as well as bringing information and understanding. 

On a related note … You may have seen that we announced a new addition to our wine club: The Sparkling Edit. Each month we will introduce you to two (or four) bottles of sparkling wines produced near and far. You will get to explore the history, the science, and the future of sparkling wine making through our thoughtfully written winemaker stories and tasting notes. We will also include pairing suggestions and recipes so no guesswork needed. 

In the middle of the month we veered off the beaten path and held a Sake tasting. If you thought women winemakers were a small group, women sake makers could be considered a micro group. We learned about the art and science of polishing rice to make sake and how the brewing process creates the fascinating and endless variety of flavors. If you haven’t tried sake since that fateful night in your 20s when your friends talked you into it at that sushi place (and you know that didn’t end well), you should dip your toe back in the pool.

We tried four different Sakes from three different women Toji (Master Sake Brewer): Miho Imada of Fukucho, Miho Fujita of Yuho, and Maiko Tsujii of Gozenshu. Personally, my favorite is the Moon on the Water jenmai ginjo  and the Moon on the Water jenmai ginjo namazake. Both are very nuanced and so soft in the mouth. 

Our final tasting this month featured wines made by Brianne Day of Day Wines in Dundee, Oregon. She’s a James Beard semi-finalist, and was featured in Wine Enthusiast’s Future 40 Tastemakers. Brianne works to source her fruit from small growers in various Oregon AVAs with a focus on biodynamic and organic practices. 

Her rosè, Lemonade is one of my favorites and the story behind the 2021 vintage is brilliant. “What a joy it was to make this wine out of want and not out of need. While the year 2021 gave us plenty of practice in continuing to “make the best of it”, the vintage of 2021 made making the best very easy. Our 2021 Lemonade continues our efforts in championing our small growers, and much of this fruit was contracted just after the 2020 harvest from growers who were unable to sell their fruit in 2020. It was sourced entirely from organically grown vineyards across the Willamette Valley - seven in total. The vineyards ranged from the Chehalem Mountains in the north, all the way down to the Southern Willamette Valley near Eugene. With the diversity of area, ripening all of the fruit to the right levels took time and we picked & pressed this fruit over the course of three weeks. This really allowed us to pick different sites at different levels of ripeness with the blend in mind. Doing it this way meant that absolutely no additions were needed or used to achieve the exact balance we wanted in the wine. Spontaneously fermented, native partial malolactic fermentation, with no additions save a small amount of SO2. This year the wine is pale pink, full of lemon, pink apple, pink grapefruit, river stones, bright berries and flowers” - Day Wines 2021

Of course my favorite is pretty much ALL of the Day wines. Don’t make me choose. 

The tasting may be over but you can still find these delicious wines at the Merc!

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