In addition to visiting three fabulous wineries at the 5th Annual Wine Bloggers Conference in Portland, we had the opportunity to travel Oregon and around the world via wine glass.

One lively tasting opportunity was the Live Wine Blogging, think speed dating for discovering new favorite wines. This fast paced hour has wineries visiting tables and giving several minute presentations on the one wine they are pouring. Our table for the Whites & Rosés session had 9 wineries pour for us of the 29 pouring. Here were my favorites and where you can find them…

Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards Va de Vi

  • Variety: 89% Pinot Noir, 8% Chardonnay, 3% Muscat from Sonoma, California
  • Aroma: Apple and pear notes
  • Taste: Vanilla peach with hints of citrus
  • Price: $22
  • My thoughts: In Barcelona they say, “Va de Vi!”, “it’s about the wine!” This new sparkling wine from Gloria Ferrer, the first sparkling wine house in California’s Carneros region, celebrates their Spanish heritage. I really liked the mouth feel of this wine…small bubbles and velvety with a touch of sweetness. You can order it here.

Recuerdo Wines 2010 Torrontés 

  • Variety: 100% Torrontés from Uco Valley in Mendoza, Argentina
  • Aroma: Floral and citrus
  • Taste: Crisp honeysuckle and peach
  • Price: $15
  • My thoughts: New white grape discovery for me. As the team sampling said, “It’s the new Sauvignon Blanc.” Perfect as I’m a Sauvignon Blanc fan. This wine “captures the best of Argentina’s unique terroir.” Recuerdo Wines, which means ‘memory’ or ‘momento’ in Spanish, is an interesting partnership between Blackbird Vineyards in Napa Valley and The Vines of Mendoza in Argentina. You can order this wine and their Malbec here.

Benton-Lane 2011 Willamette Valley Pinot Gris

  • Variety: 100% Pinot Gris from Monroe, Oregon
  • Aroma: Honeysuckle and grapefruit
  • Taste: Crisp refreshing honeydew melon, peach and hints of lime
  • Price: $17
  • My thoughts: 2011 was one of the coolest growing seasons on record for Oregon but it produced perfect fruit for Benton-Lane’s Pinot Gris. They predominately make Pinot Noir, which is very nice, but I loved this Pinot Gris. Benton-Lane is family-owned, and since their first vintage in 1992, have produced estate grown fruit using sustainable farming practices. They have received more Top 100 Wines of the World than any other Oregon winery. You can order their wines here.

Next Live Wine Blogging, Reds!