What a treat we had Thursday, November 21st when Sandy’s distant cousin, Steve Caron, visited Potter’s Vineyard. Steve’s Great Grandmother (Pulcherie LaLande, who married Jacob Caron) was the sister of Sandy’s Great Grandfather (Max LaLande) on her mothers’ side. Sandy’s Mom, Joann joined Steve and Sandy and had a great time discussing the LaLande and Caron family tree, which Steve has done an amazing job tracing.
The visit was also very special because Steve’s wife Ksenia came along on the trip to do some research on Oregon Wines. Ksenia is a Wine Educator, finishing up her level 4 Diploma Certification with WSET, the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and her Wine Akademic diploma at the Austrian Wine Academy. She also teaches in St. Petersburg, Russia training future Sommeliers. She focused her visits on the Dundee Hills, Eola Hills, Ribbon Ridge, and the Chehalem Mountains AVA’s.
Ksenia pursued visits with several of the well-known wineries in the area and we all laughed that she would have never found us had it not been for Steve’s family connection. But Ksenia was so happy to have discovered us and very much enjoyed our vineyard and tasting room here during her visit. Ksenia and I had a chance to go through our current release of Vino Vasai wines while Steve tasted along but focused his time with Joann and Sandy on photo albums and family stories.
We tasted the 2017 Celilo Vineyard Chardonnay, the 2017 Dario Estate Pinot Noir, the 2017 Barrel 17 Select Estate Pinot Noir, and the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon. It was so fascinating watching her taste through them all and share her thoughts on each. I had such a great time listening to every comment about the wines that I completely forgot to document them. Fortunately, Steve contacted us over the weekend because he wanted to come back for a family picture. On their return visit, I interviewed Ksenia and we re-visited the 2017 Dario Estate Pinot Noir so I could jot down some of her thoughts.
I am so honored by her comments that I asked if I could quote her. Here’s what she said about the Dario. “I love the bright juicy sour cherry nature of this wine. I value the pure fruit character of wines and appreciate when they are not overly influenced by the barrel treatment - this wine clearly exhibits that. I also enjoy the floral rose hips and fresh rose components. The tannins are perfectly ripe and silky. It is a very vibrant wine, which makes it perfect to pair with Italian food that we enjoy very much, like a simple pasta dish with tomato sauce. The bright acidity of the wine will go well with tomatoes. It will also pair well with cured meats like a thinly sliced prosciutto. I love this wine”.
Even though we only re-visited the Dario, she recalled her thoughts on our Barrel 17 Select Estate Pinot Noir. “Barrel 17 is spicier, more expressive and deeper; with floral characters of wilted rose and violets, also with herbal aromas of oregano and bay leaf. It also has good acidity which provides a great balance with the more pronounced oak notes. The Barrel 17 will be perfect for a celebration of any kind as it will pair well with more sophisticated meals like roast beef or roasted lamb shoulder.”
Cheers to that! Thank you Ksenia and Steve for such a nice visit.
Bill Sanchez, Monday, November 25th, 2019.