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Unusual Varietals

September 2021

The best part about my job is introducing people to new wineries – and even new varietals – that they’ve never heard of. There are a lot of unusual varietals and unusual techniques being used all over Oregon that are extraordinary.

Mondeuse and Maréchal Foch. Grenache Blanc and Gruner Veltliner. These unusual varietals are all being made into amazing, small batch wines here in Oregon by wonderfully obsessed winemakers dedicated to bringing unusual varietals to your table.

So to honor the back-to-school season, we’ve dedicated our September selections at Cellar 503 to learning about unusual varietals and unusual winemaking techniques.

Our first red is a big, bold and juicy Maréchal Foch—a hearty cold weather hybrid grapes—from Airlie Winery in Monmouth. Our second red is a Mondeuse from James Rahn Wine Co. based out of Abbey Road in Carlton.

Our first white is a sparkling Gruner Veltliner from the queen of sparklers, Kim Kramer at Kramer Vineyards. Our second white is a Grenache Blanc from Willamette Valley’s Sis & Mae Wine Co.

I hope you enjoy these unusual varietals and techniques get you excited to learn more about wine in Oregon and around the world!