Ridgecrest Wines 2018 Grüner Veltliner

A dad, a daughter, and a hill.

Oregon wine pioneer Harry Peterson-Nedry planted Ridgecrest Vineyard when his daughter Wynne was only 6 months old, some four decades ago. Wynne literally grew up on this hill – the very first vineyard on Ribbon Ridge, the smallest AVA in the Willamette Valley, and whose wines are today among the most sought-after in the world.

But Ridgecrest was the personal side project. Harry is well-known in the wine world as the founder of the Chehalem Winery. A roaring success, Chehalem grew and grew until it had a life of its own. Yearning for something smaller, something more personal, more family-oriented, Harry sold Chehalem to his partners and returned to his roots at Ridgecrest.

Along the way, Wynne followed in her dad’s footsteps. She became a winemaker and travelled all over the world to work in different wineries and hone her own perspective in wine. In 2009, she came back to the Valley, first at Chehalem and then, as head winemaker for Ridgecrest.

A dad, a daughter, and a hill. You’ll find that line on each of the bottles, reflecting Harry’s vision, Wynne’s deep knowledge of her childhood stomping grounds, and a magnificently-situated vineyard.

Cellar 503 Tasting Notes

Ridgecrest Wines, Newberg, Oregon
2018 Grüner Veltliner

Ah, Grüner Veltliner. It has one of the most diverse taste profiles of any wine. As famed Austrian winemaker Emmerich Knoll put it, “You can taste ten Grüner Veltliners and still cannot say, ‘I know what Grüner Veltliner tastes like.’”

This Ridgecrest Grüner is one of those bottles that you open and decide within the first two sips that you are going to finish the whole bottle in one sitting!

It starts with a brilliant straw color and a savory nose with fresh herbs and hints of ginger. Then, the nuanced and elegant layers of complexity show up. You’ll taste yellow plums, honeydew melon, and red apple with hints of vanilla and nutmeg. This is a full-bodied white with a richness and roundness that is expertly balanced with just enough acid. Grüner Veltliner is best enjoyed with rich foods that can handle the acid, and spicy foods that benefit from the textural complexity. In Austria, a perfectly-fried wienerschnitzel. Here, I love it with spicy Asian foods.

A Cellar 503 selection in January 2020, Winter Warmers Ribbon Ridge | Grüner Veltliner

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