Friday, September 16, 2011
Disgorging Sparkling Wine With Rollin Soles of Argyle Winery
While on a recent press trip to Portland, called Full On Oregon and sponsored by Travel Oregon, I encountered one of the largest producers of Oregon sparkling wine, Argyle Winery. Since 1987, Brian Croser and Rollin Soles, from their Dundee Hills winery, have been producing still and sparkling wines. All of their sparkling wines are vintage dated, and they use only Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes to produce several different styles, from Blanc de Blancs to a Rosé. They do not seek to create a consistent taste year from year, but rather want a sparkling wine reflective of each different vintage.
Rollin came bearing an antique disgorgement tool and three bottles of Argyle sparkling wine. The tool had a wooden handle with a small claw at the end, to remove the crown cap atop the bottles. In brief, disgorgement is the process of removing the sediment from a bottle of sparkling wine, and Rollin goes into more detail on the video. Basically, you open the crown cap with the tool, and the sediment shoots out because of the pressure in the bottle. But Rollin did not intend to disgorge the wines himself, instead desirous of having three of the media attendees perform.
On this amusing video, you will see Georgia, myself and Linda all disgorge a bottle of sparkling wine, each in our own unique way. This was my first time disgorging a bottle of sparkling wine, and hopefully I will do better on any subsequent efforts. But there is nothing wrong with a little shower of bubbly. It was plenty of fun and I am very glad I had the opportunity to try it. We got to drink the sparkling wine afterwards, a tasty and fairly complex Brut, making me want to try more of their wines.