Like I’ve mentioned in a previous post, Oregon happens to have amazing weather for a fickle, delicious little grape called pinot noir. There is another aspect of Oregon that I feel is amazing; the climate of the wine industry.
There is a quote commonly attributed to John F Kennedy that goes “a rising tide lifts all boats” that applies to the wine industry. When Oregon wine is seen as quality wine around the world, all wineries will benefit. This philosophy is reflected in industry practices; everyone is friendly, accommodating, informative and generous. Industry discounts range from 20 percent to 40 percent and wine flights are complimentary for industry members. The more informed an individual is, the better equipped he or she is to assist someone asking about Oregon wine.
For example, I enjoyed the wine flights of Rex Hill, Scott Paul and Willamette Valley Vineyards, so I will recommend them to people who come into the Seven of Hearts / Luminous Hills tasting room and ask for suggestions. I feel confident sending people over because I know that I had an enjoyable experience at those tasting rooms. Likewise, when I buy a bottle of wine at one of those wineries, I will bring it home, enjoy it and remember it to mention to people passing through our tasting room. If I know that a certain person likes Rhone-style wines and a winery that I went to last Sunday has an amazing mourvèdre, I’ll send that person over.
The spirit of the Oregon wine industry is welcoming, family-like and quite endearing. It’s got a small-town feel even though it is a huge industry. Most of the people I’ve met have treated me like an old friend, which I don’t think is common in many other fields. It brings to mind “camaraderie” instead of “cut-throat.”