Johnny Brose, the winemaking instructor at Chemeketa College’s Northwest Wine Studies Center in Salem, would be letting down his students if he doesn’t use this Pinot Gris, under his new personal brand, as a lesson plan. Other winemakers could take notes, too. Brose worked a year in the cellar at King Estate before spending two vintages making wine in Washington’s Yakima Valley, and his work here with several vineyards throughout the Willamette Valley results in a tropical expression of Pinot Gris that’s more typical of Washington than Oregon in its style. Enticing aromas of passionfruit and Juicy Fruit gum transition to flavors of Rainier cherry and white pepper that are framed by a spectacular platform of lime Italian soda. Enjoy with crab cakes, halibut or oysters.
Rating: Unanimously Outstanding! Double gold — 94 points
Production: 56 cases