Oregon Wineries - Memorial Day weekend

Mar 20th, 2005, 01:37 PM
  #1  
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Oregon Wineries - Memorial Day weekend

Hi everyone,

I was wondering if anyone who has tasted during the Memorial Day (or Thanksgiving) weekend open houses in Oregon wine country can comment as to how crowded things get? I am thinking of traveling out there this year, but I am not a big fan of long lines and large crowds.

Any info is appreciated.

Thanks!

David
dis1010 is offline  
Mar 20th, 2005, 03:50 PM
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I've never been to Memorial Day open houses, but I believe Thanksgiving weekend ones are more crowded. Some places can get elbow to elbow because most wineries are quite small, but there are no long lines or large crowds in any of the those I regularly visit.
beachbum is offline  
Mar 21st, 2005, 07:46 AM
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Thank you. I had actually read in one place (though I cannot seem to find it again) that some of the more popular wineries run out of wine early in the weekend. Not sure if there is any truth to that contention.

If anyone has any information on any special events (maybe nighttime events?) that go on during the Memorial Day weekend in that area, that would be appreciated as well.

Thanks again.
dis1010 is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2005, 08:09 AM
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We live very near the Oregon wine country, and started going to the Thanksgiving and Memorial Day open houses years ago. As time went on, we found them to be less and less fun as they became more and more crowded. We haven't gone in about five years now, as they just became too crowded to enjoy. The last time we went, we finally had to walk out of several after waiting a half hour or longer, a nd could never even get close enough to be able to taste. Maybe Beachbum could give you some suggestions on which ones might be less crowded - and I'd like that too! Good luck - we do have some great wines.
balitrav is offline  
Mar 24th, 2005, 01:09 PM
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Thank you balitrav. The friend I was going w/ mentioned that the wineries have been charging tasting fees during that weekend (while they didn't used to do so). Does anyone think that may have helped reduce the crowds?
dis1010 is offline  
Mar 24th, 2005, 01:35 PM
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My usual stops during Thanksgiving weekend include Ponzi, BrickHouse, Willakenzie, David Hill, and points between (mostly in the hills north of 99 between Newberg and Dundee.

Most have started to charge tasting fees that weekend; some are pretty steep - $20 at Ponzi, I think, but you get to keep the Riedel glass.
beachbum is offline  
Mar 24th, 2005, 01:43 PM
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We have gone every year for the past 4 years, I love it! This site can give you info on fees, hours, etc.

www.willamettewines.com/index.shtml

Not all the wineries are open each day so plan who you'd like to visit and make sure you hit them when they are open. I've only heard of a few that do very small production running out of some of their best by the last day (JKCarrier).

Where are you staying? Make sure you have reservations! We already have ours for Thanksgiving. And make dinner reservations early too. Bistrot Maison and Tina's are our 2 personal favorites.

Yes the wineries get crowded but the only line I've ever encountered was at Domaine Serene.

Best # of tastes for you buck:

Erath, Patricia Green, Sokol Blosser, Owen Roe, Adelshiem.

Other favorites:

Domaine Drouhin, Lange, JKCarrier, Ken Wright (futures only), Witness Tree.
stormygirl is offline  
Mar 24th, 2005, 02:53 PM
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I think that the wineries can be a bit crowded, but for us coming in from Northern California it feels a bit like a busy weekend in Napa or Sonoma. We just did the barrel tasting in Sonoma and I will be surprised if Oregon gets that many people to show up!

Last time we did the Open House in Oregon was 2 Thanksgivings past and it didn't seem overly crowded to us. We also got going pretty early and just hit some wineries in order on the Map from Dundee/Newburg over to Carlton.

This year we are going to plan to hit certain wineries at specific times to help avoid the crowds, we have found that the middle of the day is always the worst, and so we will plan a long lunch or just do the morning tastings at 3-5 places and be done for the day! We will be there for all 3 days so we surely will have lots of time to get to our special wineries...

Check out Yamhill county and Washington county since both have events going on that weekend.
montyw is offline  
Mar 26th, 2005, 12:44 PM
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We just did a Pinot Noir tasting at Ponzi yesterday. No tasting fee, as we purchased three bottles of their wines and I asked if I got to keep the glass and she said no. Great place, BTW!

If you happen to get over to the Astoria area, be sure you check out the Vintner's Room at the Hotel Elliott. It is gorgeous, down in the hotel basement and they offer many different wine flights. (Three just of the Pinot Noirs.) You can also take your tasting up to the gorgeous rooftop garden there. Have a great time! ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
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