Corks and Forks
Since 1960 The Quay has served up good memories along with cocktails, views and fine dining for residents of and visitors to Vancouver, Washington. Last Thursday’s announcement of its closure surprised a lot of folks (employees included) but it might not have gone so far as to shock anyone. The flurry of construction along the […]
August 30, 2015 11:58 am
The Northern Rhône is particularly known for its syrah—a grape receiving quite a nod in the Walla Walla Valley right now—but fruity and floral whites such as viognier, marsanne and roussanne are not only planted, they’re celebrated in notable growing regions such as Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitage. While viognier is found as a stand-alone varietal, a […]
August 28, 2015 6:00 am
Upcoming events/festival: 4th Annual Bounty of Yamhill County – Fri, Aug 28-Sun, Aug 30 Yamhill County will be showing off all their local farms and wineries can produce at luncheons, al fresco dinners, farm tours and much more. Purchase tickets here. Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing - Sat, Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6 […]
August 27, 2015 12:00 pm
European travel can seem daunting for folks who haven’t ventured across the big pond but going with friends can ease the apprehension and create lifelong memories. For wine aficionados, vineyard owners of their favorite label may fall into that category after several visits. What better vacation could there be than an international adventure alongside people […]
August 21, 2015 6:00 am
- 18th Annual Vancouver Wine & Jazz Festival - Fri, Aug 21-Sun, Aug 23 Esther Short Park plays host to “the largest jazz festival of its kind in the Northwest.” Wine, food, artisans and some of the smoothest jazz around is what its all about. Tickets on sale now.
- 4th Annual Bounty of Yamhill County - Fri, Aug 28-Sun, Aug 30 Yamhill County will be showing off all their local farms and wineries can produce at luncheons, al fresco dinners, farm tours and much more. Purchase tickets here.
- Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing - Sat, Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6 Join 11 Clark County wineries and tasting rooms from noon-5 pm for special food pairings at each stop chosen to perfectly complement their selection of wines.
- North County Wine Run – Sat, Sep 12 The 5th Annual day-long event begins at 9 am and wines by Heisen House Vineyards, Olequa Cellars, Emanar Cellars, English Estate Winery, Gougér Cellars Winery and Moulton Falls Winery will be available after the run for tasting or by the glass. Read more here. (Plans to merge this with Battle Ground Rotary’s Taste & Tunes have been cancelled.)
- CouvFest NW – Sat, Sep 19-Sun, Sep 20 Dance to the beat of over 15 bands on two stages at this 5th Annual downtown Vancouver block party which features local wines, brews, restaurants and vendors. Free for all-ages.
- Hello Vancouver! – Wed, Sep 23 is the return of this live talk show accompanied by local musicians and personalities set in the historic Kiggins Theatre. Buy a glass of wine (Francis Ford Coppola, of course) or beer in their fabulous retro-style upstairs bar and sink in for what’s sure to be a night of hilarity and craziness. Recommended PG-13. Doors open at 6 pm. Admission: FREE.
Clark County wineries:
Bethany Vineyard – Summer tasting room hours: Wed-Sat noon-6 p.m. and Sun noon-5 p.m. Sat, Aug 22—The lovingly-maintained grounds of this 27-acre estate vineyard will be accented in leather and lace as the last stop on the Ride & Rock to benefit Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. Tickets range in price from $35 for dinner and concert performed by American Idol finalist, Crystal Bowersox, to $60 which includes the Mt St Helens poker run and lunch. It’ll be the final run for this phenomenally-successful fundraising event. Come support this amazing children’s hospital and help them reach their $100,000 goal. Music in the Vines summer concert series continues with the Patrick Lamb band on Aug 30.
Burnt Bridge Cellars – Fri, August 21—It’s the all-new Third Friday event at Burnt Bridge. Help them kick off a new tradition from 4-8 pm with live music, local art and food by Bleu Door Bakery. Fri, Sept 4— This First Friday stop featuring live music, food by Class Cooking and award-winning wine from 4-8 pm make for a winning combination. Sat, Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days Sat, Sept 19-Sun, Sept 20— Pouring at the 5th Annual CouvFest NW on 9th and Main Sts in downtown Vancouver. Kudos: Their 2014 Semillon and 2012 Coyote Canyon Syrah were awarded Silver medals and their 2014 Viognier was awarded a Bronze at the San Francisco International Wine Competition. Be sure to congratulate the gang the next time you’re in! Enjoy award-winning wine at Vancouver’s only urban winery. New tasting room hours: Fri 4-8 pm, Sat 12-7 pm, Sun 12-5 pm.
Confluence Vineyards and Winery – Fri, Aug 21—Relax with Blues & BBQ from 6-9 pm. Recent releases: 2014 Walla Walla Semillon and their first Dry Rosé ever. Open Sat & Sun noon-6 pm tasting the bold and beautiful Rhone and Bordeaux reds Confluence is known for. Keep tabs on their Facebook page for last-minute live music by stellar local artists.
East Fork Cellars – This award-winning winery has gone private. Join the club and enjoy special member events. Housed in the historic Old Slocum House within Esther Short Park.
English Estate Winery – Reservations encouraged for Friday night Good Times & Wine dinner-for-purchase events. Fri, Aug 21—Caryn Jamieson pairs nicely with another NW favorite; grilled salmon. Fri, Aug 28—Tom Mann will be appearing alongside dinner catered by Battle Ground’s Pasta Gigi’s. Kathy’s sure to be cooking up something satisfying. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Upcoming Wine About Painting dates: Tues, Sep 15, Oct 13 and Nov 17 beginning at 6:30 pm. $40 includes a glass of wine, all the painting materials and light appetizers. Sat, Oct 10—Save the date for their 5th Annual Chili Cook off. The only Clark County winery open Monday from 4:30-7 pm with $5 glasses of wine to start your week off right. Open Fri-Mon.
Gougér Cellars – Gary showcases weekend food specials— like a recent Canadian salmon sautéed in butter and his award-winning chardonnay—using his Traeger and smoker to add his special touch to meats and cheeses. Come nosh on some great food paired with award-winning wines and cap it all off with one of his non-alcoholic ice creams made from his wines. Kudos: His 2013 Syrah just won Gold and earned 93 points at the San Francisco International Wine Competition. But that’s not all. His 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon and 2012 Malbec both received silver medals and his still-in-tank 2014 Pinot Noir earned him a bronze! Be sure to congratulate him the next time you’re in! Tasting room open Wed-Sun.
Heisen House Vineyards - Fri, Aug 21— Friday Music Nights continues. From 6-9 pm enjoy classic country music from Countryside Ride, beautiful wines and dinner-for-purchase from local food vendors. Sat, Aug 22—Hosting Flip Flops and Paradise; an event put on by Get Bold $50 per person ticket includes dinner and live music. Proceeds benefit several local causes like North County Community Food Bank and Battle Ground Rotary high school scholarships. Sat, Aug 29—Check out the 6th Annual Sunflower Festival from noon-6 pm. Blooming sunflowers, vintage flea market, antique car show, food and live music throughout the day. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Sat, Sep 26—Be a part of the 6th Annual Crush Festival from noon-6 pm. See live winemaking demonstrations, enjoy barrel tastings, food and live music throughout the day. Tasting room hours: Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Koi Pond Cellars – Recently expanded hours: Now open Tuesday-Saturday 12-5 pm at their open air tasting room next to Shorty’s Nursery (705 NE 199th St Ridgefield WA) and Wednesday-Friday 1-8 pm, 12-8 pm Saturday and 12-5 pm at their downtown Ridgefield tasting room. Thu, Aug 19—Tonight hosting a Craft n Sip event with Jen Lindsay. Reservations required. Thu, Aug 27—Paint ‘n Pour with Jennifer Smith. Sign up at Koi Pond. Sat, Aug 29—Purchase tickets now for their 5-stop Party Bus Wine Tour. $60 per person. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Mural and artwork by resident artist, Micah Boylan, grace the walls of their indoor tasting room. Open Wed-Sun.
Moulton Falls Winery – Thu, Aug 20—Enjoy their version of Thirsty Thursday from 4-8 pm with $6 pizzas and $5 cider. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Sat, Sep 12—Save the date for the Third Annual Clark County Folk Festival held on the Moulton Falls grounds. Come check out their made-on-site Hard Cider and chat with local resident and author of the book, Working on the Edge (which inspired the Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch), Spike Walker. Each weekend enjoy live music by some of the area’s best musicians from 6-9 pm and pasta dinners available for purchase on Saturday nights in addition to their wood-fired pizza options. Tasting room days: Thu-Sun.
Olequa Cellars – Next winery opening date: Aug 21. Brian’s newest release is a slightly spicy 2014 Gewurztraminer with grapes sourced from Woodland’s Cawley Vineyards. He also has a 2014 Rosé of Maréchal Foch—a varietal he’s had planted on his property since 2005—in addition to a couple other whites and some lovely reds. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Private tastings of his beautiful boutique wines welcome.
Pomeroy Cellars – Fri, Sep 18—Mark your calendar for their First Year Anniversary Party from 1-9 pm with a bbq dinner available for purchase, bocce ball, prize drawings, wine specials and live music from 6-9 pm. Recently released: A limited supply of Blackberry Wine (only 5 cases were made) and 2013 Lucia No. 47 Red Blend. Ask Destiny how to replicate their Independence weekend offering Red, White and Blue Summer Spritzer, made with Pomeroy Cellars Hard Apple Cider. Normal tasting room days: Sat-Sun.
Rezabek Vineyards and Daybreak Cellars – Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Be one of the first to see the tasting room of Clark County’s newest winery located in Battle Ground.
Rusty Grape Vineyards – Sat, Aug 29—Hosting Wine & Shine cruise-in. $15 to register a car which includes a pizza coupon. Sat, Sep 5—Sign up now for their Labor Day Weekend Wine Tour where you can taste at up to 5 wineries without the hassles of driving. Purchase tickets here. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Sat, Sept 12—Sign up here for Pinot & Paint Night at the Grape from 6- 8 pm. $35 for supplies, instruction and your first glass of wine. Heads up: Ever wanted to vacation with Jeremy and Heather? They’ve put together a Viking River Boat cruise through the romantic waterways of France April 2016. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details! Kudos: OnlyInYourState.com recently ranked the Grape #13 of 15 winery must-visits in Washington State. Wood-fired pizzas, paninis and truffle chips complement Italian-inspired reds and their lineup of whites is perfect for our Summer weather. Pouring at their new outdoor tasting bar. Live music Wed-Sat from 7-9 pm. Come check out additional indoor seating, expanded outdoor seating and the return of movies-on-the-lawn. Wednesday is 2 wood-fired pizzas for $15. Thursday brings Thirsty Thursday from 4:3-6:30 pm with special prices on wines, beer and food and Sunday they do it again from noon-3 pm. Something’s always going on at the Grape. Open Wed-Sun.
Three Brothers Vineyard – Updated tasting room hours for summer: Wed-Fri 1-6 p.m., Sat noon-6 p.m. and Sun noon-5 p.m. Another successful summer concert series wrapped up last Sunday with Lloyd Jones but there’s still plenty of opportunity to enjoy the expanded outdoor seating under cooling Evergreens while sipping on award-winning wines. Tasting hours Fri 1-6 pm, Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm.
Village Vineyard – Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Live music every Saturday from 2-5 pm and open mic, hosted by Marianne Flemming or Wayne Hoffman, every Sunday from 2-4 pm. You never know which local musician(s) will stop by for an impromptu gig with these two around. Folks are welcome to bring outside food or purchase snack plates while enjoying their beautiful wine lineup and some extended adult down time. Normal tasting room hours: Sat noon-6 pm, Sun 11 am-5 pm.
Tasting opportunities/wine bars:
Battle Ground Produce – The owner of Battle Ground Produce, Lorne, knows his wine and enjoys offering complimentary tastings to customers most Fridays from 4-7 pm. Andreas, Rayne and Scott pour with insight, passion and friendly banter. There’s usually something for the beer lover, as well, and he recently added a handy growler station across from the meat case.
BevMo! – Fri 4-7 pm & Sat 2-5 pm, 5 tastings, always complimentary unless otherwise indicated. Presiding over the pouring are knowledgeable friendly folks who encourage questions in a low key, comfortable atmosphere.
Birch Street Uptown Lounge – Their recent expansion into the space next to them will afford room for wine dinners and other tantalizing events in the future. Sunday and Monday night wine flights from 4-midnight with terrific tasting notes. Come out and enjoy this classic-style wine and cocktail lounge with live torch singers every Fri and Sat night beginning at 8 pm and personable bartenders all week long.
Cellar 55 Tasting Room – Thur, Aug 27— Hosting a Wine & Canvas class from 6-9 pm. Fri, Aug 28— Guitarist, Jesse Samsel, performs from 7-9 pm. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. Pouring fantastic Eastern Washington and Walla Walla wines by the glass or bottle five days a week along with light appetizers for purchase. Local art and special happy hours are featured as well as live music most Fridays from 7-9 pm. Open at noon Wed-Sun.
Charlie’s Bodega Tapas & Whiskey Bar – Monday 50% off all bottles of wine $50 and under and a Tuesday night flight tasting—3 whiskeys or 3-4 wines depending on bartender’s pick paired with a tapas (similar to an appetizer) or media-ración (small version of an entrée). The entire menu aims to educate folks on Spanish cuisine and their wine selection is heavily Spanish and Portuguese with a few NW favorites mixed in. Whiskey lovers will enjoy the ever-expanding local, regional and international choices with the promise of more to come. Open Mon-Sat.
Emanar Cellars - Fri, Aug 21—Unwind to acoustic guitarist, Dan Dingeman, from 6-8 pm Sat, Aug 22—Kick it up a notch with flamenco guitarist James Manuele from 6-8 pm. Local winery showcase: Heisen House Vineyards 2012 Tempranillo Fri, Aug 28—Let Brian Buller’s combination of celtic/folk/electronica mesmerize you from 6-8 pm Sat, Aug 29—Prolific songwriter/guitarist, Steve Rodin, performs from 6-8 pm. Sept 5-Sun, Sept 6— One of the 11 stops on the Southwest Washington Wine Association Labor Day Food & Wine Pairing self-guided tour. Noon-5 pm both days. New sliding glass doors bring the outside in wherever you sit at this authentic Spanish tapas bar showcasing gazpacho, Sangria, tapas and an extensive lineup of Spanish wines with tasting notes Thursday-Saturday.
Evergreen Wine Cellar – Fri, Aug 21—Pam typically pours five wines for $5 from 5-8 pm. Sign up for her email blast to keep in the loop. Stay tuned: For details of the next wine and art class in September. Register on site. Pam has the largest selection of sparklings in Clark County (80 at last count), holds extensive knowledge on food pairings to help more occasions be elevated to special ones and offers special pricing for fundraisers and special events.
Flutes & Rocks Lounge - Savor sparklings from California, high-end Champagnes by the glass, wines, beers and select liquors (I.e. Jameson Black Barrel Select Reserve) paired with an artisan cheese plate or charcuterie platter at their outdoor seating. Occasional live music and specialty Champagne and Bourbon tastings! Open Tues-Sat.
Fred Meyer Fisher’s Landing – Every Fri & Sat from 2-5 pm long-time Clark County wine steward, Ernie Jones, aims for two tastings with occasional Murray’s cheese pairings. Enjoy their dedicated wine-tasting space.
Fred Meyer Orchards – Occasional tastings on Fridays from 2-5 pm and every Saturday from 2-5 pm. Wine steward, Shawn Martin, hosts a two to three-wine tasting that he pairs with Murray’s cheeses. Shawn’s commitment to Northwest wines is evident in two end caps featuring local selections like Burnt Bridge Cellars and Koi Pond Cellars as well as Bateaux Cellars and Mount St. Helens Cellars.
Fred Meyer Salmon Creek – Fri & Sat from 3-6 pm wine steward, Kent Gallegos, routinely pairs two wines with Murray’s cheeses. Don’t know quite what you’re looking for? Kent’s enthusiastic palate and gregarious personality won’t steer you wrong.
La Bottega– Wednesday night wine tasting from 5-7 pm. $12 includes four tastings and antipasti. Terrific casual Italian dining with an extensive wine list to complement every flavor profile. Happy hour Mon-Sat features $5 red/white wine option. Tuesday, from 5-9 pm, wines under $50 are 50% off and wines over $50 are discounted $25. Excellent way to enjoy some premium wines with their locally-focused menu. With an inventory of 300+ bottles also available to take away, La Bottega easily doubles as a wine shop.
Latte da Coffeehouse & Wine Bar – Thurs, Aug 20— A Relay for Life Concert and Silent Auction featuring the talents of finger-pickin’ guitarist, Doug Smith from 6-9 pm. $15 ticket includes one beverage (may I suggest wine?). Thurs, Aug 27—Tuck yourself into Latte da’s cozy wine bar for their monthly wine tasting beginning at 5 pm. Latte Da’s wine bar is open ’til 10 pm Thur-Sat featuring a wine-friendly appetizer menu to pair with their unique vino selection and beer taps coming soon. Bonus: The expansive patio is perfect for summer sipping and all wines are available to purchase by the bottle for take away.
New Seasons Market – Fri, Aug 21—Hosting Abacela Winery all the way from Southern Oregon from 4-6 pm. Sat, Aug 22—Enjoy Portland urban cidery, Reverend Nat’s, from 4-6 pm.Sat, Aug 29— Owen Roe Wines are in the house from 4-6 pm. Friday tastings from 4-6 pm could be wine or beer paired with cheeses. Stop by to see what’s being poured.
Niche-a wine & art bar– Tues, Aug 25 — Working with area cheese enthusiasts, The Vancouver Cheese Board was recently founded. Come out and try four different wines with four different cheeses for $25 and make a point to add this recurring event to your calendar the last Tuesday of every month from 5-7 pm. This month the focus is on sake. Mon, Sep 21—Celebrate the resurrection of the Bubbles Club; a flight of 4 sparkling wines— always one true Champagne— paired with some nibbles. 6-9 pm, $20-$25. This downtown wine bar has 30+ pours available six days a week with a staff who knows their vino. All set in an unpretentious atmosphere displaying local art. With an inventory of over 160 bottles also available to take away, Niche easily doubles as a wine shop. Live entertainment every Saturday night.
Red Lion Inn at the Quay - A treat for those willing to brave the construction is Wine Wednesdays. 50% off all bottled wines on Wednesdays from 4pm – 10pm in the Lounge & 5pm – 9pm in the Restaurant. Future Sharon’s Paint and Pour events: Wed, Aug 26 Swaying with the Palm Trees; Wed, Sep 23 Go SeaHawks.
Total Wine & More – Tasting hours: Fri, 4-8 pm, Sat noon-6 pm, Sun noon-5 pm. Check out their calendar for upcoming special event tastings and classes which may include a fee.
Vinotopia – Located inside Cascade Park’s Cinetopia, Vinotopia received Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence five years straight. More info here. Aside from the dizzying array of wines by the bottle, guests can enjoy ½ off bottles of wines on Wednesdays and tastes or glasses of wine from a selection of over 100 daily. Pair that with their live music from 6-10 pm every Sat in their dining room and you have a no-fail date night.
Whole Foods – Beer & wine specialist, Kamram, hosts beer or wine tastings Sat from 1-4 pm. Also tasting on Friday evenings from 4-8 pm but it’s typically beer-focused.
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August 20, 2015 6:00 am
Gamey, terroir, buttery—all terms used to describe wine that can also apply to the wonderful world of cheese. From soft to hard, mild to sharp and sweet to salty there’s a perfect cheese or three for every wine and every occasion that calls for a satiating slice of protein. I spoke with Leah Jackson, owner […]
August 14, 2015 6:00 am
Upcoming events/festival: Shorty’s Garden & Home Ladies Night Series – Thur, Aug 13—The Mill Plain location is going Hawaiian. $22 admission includes a luau dinner, wine tasting tokens, a hula class and live music from 5-9 pm. Local wineries English Estate Winery, Gougér Cellars, Heisen House Vineyards and Olequa Cellars will be pouring. Advanced tickets required. 6th Annual […]
August 13, 2015 12:08 pm
Baby boomers are often targeted by marketing companies as a mature generation with money to spend. At a recent industry event hosted by Diam Corks and G3 Enterprises, Joe Roberts submitted to the audience of, ironically, well over 40 year-old winemakers and industry professionals that it is the millennial generation marketers should be shifting their […]
August 7, 2015 6:00 am
Upcoming events/festival: Fri, August 7 – It’s time once again for First Friday in the downtown core of Vancouver, Camas, Battle Ground and Ridgefield. Stores stay open late, local art is featured, live music can be heard and nibbles are available at select locations. Check each city’s local link for more information. Shorty’s Garden & Home […]
August 6, 2015 10:28 am
Portugal is less traveled than neighboring Spain but, for wine enthusiasts, it affords an exciting pilgrimage—tasting Port in its birthplace. This fortified sweet wine comes in several styles including white, ruby and tawny and works well as an aperitif, end of meal drink or in combination with a cheese plate or chocolates depending on the […]
July 31, 2015 6:00 am