Sometime around the end of May or early June I received samples from Left Coast, a wine estate located in the Willamette Valley. I’ve had the opportunity to try wines from this winery once before, but this time I was opening bottles ideal for spring and summer sipping that seemed a bit more off the beaten path than the usual summer fare. As I board a flight to Vegas today, these seem like they could be perfect choices for the hundred degree weather I am about to subject myself to. Read on and see if you agree!
The first bottle I opened was the 2017 White Pinot Noir, which I thought of as the most unique offering from the winery. This poured almost clear into the glass and was one of the fruitiest whites I’ve ever opened. The notes of early season peaches, donut peaches, clementines, sweet lemons, and pear all abounded both on the nose and on the palate. I craved a touch more acidity with this one, but there was a salinity that was very enticing with each sip. This wine first began in 2011 as a small experiment, and Left Coast liked it so much they have continued to create this very distinctive option since then. At $24, it is one to at least experiment with and form your own opinions on. I’d certainly buy another bottle, especially for a cook out with friends!
In the height of pink season, the second bottle was the 2017 Rosé, which was a blend of 54% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Meunier, and 6% Pinot Blanc. Fermented and aged in 100% neutral French oak, this sunrise-colored wine was crisp with notes of cherry, ripe red berries, and orange zest. Despite these flavors, it didn’t have a particularly fruity feel and gave off the impression of a more mature rosé. It wasn’t something you would want to turn into frosé, but rather pop open during a book club after finishing Nana. It had a long linger and paired perfectly with the goat cheese and crackers I snacked on alongside this bottle. With an SRP of $24, it’s a solid choice that would pair well with a variety of foods and could easily become a summer staple.
The third bottle I opened was the 2017 The Orchard Pinot Gris, a grape that has intrigued me much more since trying the Adorada with #WineStudio all those months ago. Comprised of 91% Pinot Gris and 9% Pinot Blanc, this was a very fragrant choice that gave off aromas of pineapple, tropical fruits, and lemon verbena. On the palate, it was a full wine that provided notes of melon, juicy pears, lemon curd, and just the slightest touch of stone. I drank this while I ate some lox on rosemary bread with chive cream cheese and fresh tomatoes. While I wouldn’t say the wine was essential to have with food, it was a great choice for easy sipping. Clocking in at $18, it’s a wine I suggest associating yourself with.
After my two experiences with Left Coast, I feel confident in saying they make quality wines for a good price. If you come across a bottle in a store or decide to check out their website, please pick up a bottle or two! These wines aren’t going to break the bank, are great for sharing, and all offer up interesting flavors to explore alongside food or on their own. I can’t think of anything better than a good wine to invest in for these dog days of summer, can you?
These wines were kindly provided to me by the wineries/importers listed above, but all opinions are my own.