Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Westmount Winery: Pinot Gris to Pinot Noir Rosé

"Westmount embodies the spirit of adventure and exploration."
--Westmount Wine website

The delight of Oregon wine! Pinot is King, especially in the Willamette Valley, but other grapes grow well in different regions of Oregon. With the heat of the summer, it's a great time to explore the White and Rosé wines of Oregon, such as those of Westmount Wine. I received a couple media samples of their wines, which were both delicious and refreshing.

Westmount Wine Company, which falls under the parent company NW Wine Co., was founded by four people, including Danielle Andrus Montalieu and John Niemeyer. The third founder was Laurent Montalieu, who acts as the Executive Winemaker. He studied agricultural engineering at the Institute of Oenology in Bordeaux, moving to Oregon in 1987, eventually becoming a partner and winemaker at the famed WillaKenzie Estate. The fourth founder was Robert Moshier, who has a degree in Production and Operations Management. He is also a wine lover, as well as an avid climber and mountaineer.

"The Westmount winemaking philosophy is to maintain the personality of the vineyard while allowing the grapes to develop into the wine they were meant to be.”
Anne Sery, Winemaker

Westmount Wine has over 100 acres planted with grapes, primarily Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris, with some Chardonnay. As they are outdoors people, it was only natural for them to produce wine in cans as well, something which is much easier to carry and transport in the wilderness (or beach) rather than glass bottles.

The 2018 Westmount Pinot Noir Rosé ($20), with a 12.9% ABV, possessed a medium pink color and an alluring nose of fresh red fruits with a hint of tropical fruit. On the palate, it was dry, crisp and fresh, with bright strawberry and watermelon, and subtle hints of more tropical fruits and citrus. A tasty, refreshing and well-balanced wine, it is excellent on its own though is also very food friendly.

The 2017 Westmount Pinot Gris ($20), with a 13.1% ABV, was equally as delicious. A compelling nose of stone fruit with a hint of spice. On the palate, it is fresh and crisp, bright and round, with tasty flavors of pear, apple, and a subtle spice note and hints of a floral element. Well balanced, with a fairly long and pleasing finish. Enjoyable on its own or paired with food, from salads to seafood.

Both of these wines are easy drinking, perfect for the summer, but they aren't simple. There is sufficient complexity for the price, and they'll provide much pleasure as well.

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