Because a bare cupboard and an empty fridge are sad sights to behold, the Urban Forager hunts through food & wine shops bringing home tasty morsels that make your kitchen table the best place to eat in town.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Oregon Sparkling Wine

Once a year, I get together with a few girlfriends who are otherwise scattered across the country leading busy lives in different states. These are not outrageous lets-go-dancing-all-night or lets-go-to-vegas weekends.
The Husband has actually started referring to these all-female getaways as "Girls Gone Mild" weekends, ever since he realized (happily, I think) the wildest thing that usually happens is we stumble upon a sea sponge on the beach.

For my girlfriends and I, the weekend is solely about hunkering down, blocking out our regular lives and focusing on the things we really love most: eating, drinking and talking. Since what we talk about is not for public consumption and what we eat is mostly cheese and chocolate (this year, Seastack from Mt. Townsend Creamery and truffles from Fran's Chocolates) I'm going to expand on what we drank: J.Albin sparkling wine from Oregon.

Oregon sparkling wine gets better and better every year - if you've tasted any of the sparkling wines from Argyle Winery you know what I'm talking about. J. Albin is a smaller venture (no website, even) and a little harder to find, but it's out there and incredibly tasty. By now we all know Oregon produces some great Pinot Noir - well, J. Albin's sparkling wine is blanc de noir, meaning it's made with Pinot Noir grapes. In this economy, a bottle of sparkling wine from Oregon might be considered special occasion stuff (prices start around $25/bottle) but it's worth the splurge and still less than Champagne from France. If you buy Champagne frequently or once in blue moon and tend to be drawn to bottles with a bright orange label, for the love of god, put the bottle down and buy sparkling wine that is not only tastier, but will teach you a little bit about what the great winemakers in Oregon are up to.

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