Pakistan and Facebook.

The Dopest Wine Taster has finally launched a Facebook page… So if you want to be bombarded by more ceaseless ranting and dope ridiculousity, like us here!  Dopest Wine Taster

or click on this!

because it's pretty, and in Southern Oregon, and links to the new Facebook page.

because it’s pretty, and in Southern Oregon, and links to the new Facebook page.

Or don’t click on anything because this Oregon wine blog has gotten views from Pakistan! Wait, what!?! I know, both awesome and worrisome simultaneously. And like majorly dope dude.

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 3.09.23 PM

In Print, Plugs for Thugs I Like

The best part about my new gig doing beer and wine reviews for the Rogue Valley Messenger is I get to do little plugs for the best of Southern Oregon wine. I get to talk about who I think is doing a great job here locally and hopefully help them to sell a couple more bottles. While mostly I’ve been doing short form reviews I’ve gotten one opportunity to write-up a longer feature. Check it out, there are some great small producers here in this little valley.

Screen Shot 2015-04-24 at 9.16.06 AM

Click on picture or words below for link to article.


Foris Vineyards

Finishing each and every drop MWWC#16

Finish: the essence, the taste that lingers, what your pallet remembers, the final nature of the wine, the cosmic essence, the long awaited end to a run on sentence…


More complex, higher quality wines have a longer finish right? So since we finished our bottle fast and it was therefor finished longer it must have been high quality?

Ok. I promise I’m finished with all the stupid word play. But seriously, even while juggling my job in the warehouse and contributing beer & wine reviews to the local Rogue Valley Messenger, Fern and I have managed to finish some prettey great bottles of wine, and each tasting had interesting and different finishes.

One of the great things about working in the periphery of the wine business is every once and a while I get some great kickdowns. Bottles not on your normal tasting menu that I would never, ever otherwise try. For example a 2012 Öküzgözü red dry wine from Diren Wines. Imported from Turkey by Vino Rai this %15 Cabernet Sauvignon %85 Öküzgözü was an unexpected experience. The variety is called bull’s eye because of the likeness of it’s large black berries. A bold red with cherry cola aroma. Strong cherry or cassis flavor with velvety tannins and a finish of wait! What is this? Am I getting oil, tar, other sorts of liquified dinosaur remains!? Sip number two, yup, there they are. Fairly dynamic, oily tannin finish. It’s a physical experience and a little bit shocking to my Oregon boy New World understanding of wine.

So what caused this Öküzgözü to have this particular finish? It wasn’t aged in an oil barrel was it! Well no, the finish of a wine is determined by a huge number of variables in the wine making process. The brix level of the grape at harvest, how it is aged (in steel, cement, french or american oak), when you drink it, etc. etc. etc. Since this 2012 Diren Öküzgözü is steel barrel aged the tannins are kept velvety and the clear oily finnish is imparted by the unique nature of the varietal’s skins and stems. The richness of the grape is maintained in the same way that young Argentinian and Chilean fruit forward red blends use steel barrel aging to maintain their clean, simple finish. Just like one of my guilty favorite cheap quaffables Dos Copas.

Of course, any sommelier worth their industry salary would respond  “But my young wine internet writer guy, a younger, simpler finish is always more approachable to an unrefined pallet”. To which I would respond “Of course that’s true! Complicated finishes are great. And we all know a long finish after a complex and dynamic ‘drinking’ session is far more satisfying (winking face).”

Don’t get me wrong, I love Malbec, Shiraz, hell even Napa Chardonnay. And not to imply that New World don’t have some great finnish but it’s hard to deny the allure of the complicated old world classics. While I swoon under the insatiable desire imparted by sturdy American oak spicing, I faint in the presence of French oak refinery. In the interest of keeping the integrity of our tasting in line with non-oaked styles we decided to see how the Old World stacks up. What splendid joys await at the bottom of that unpronounceable, tried and true? So Fern and I hit the wine bar!

Schiavenza – 13′ Dolcetto Alba, Italy. Aroma of apple cobbler. A Dynamic three part experience. It starts sour, hits the middle with fruity sweet apple pear cinnamon spice, with long poised tannin finish. Well balanced, increadably complex and wonderful experience. Like if a bottle of dry red wine was simultaneously a dessert.

Can Blau – ’12 Red Blend Montsant Spain. Dark cherry skin with pit on the nose with hint of some sort of spice. Chewy tannins to sweet acidity that ends with a bit of peppery flavored tannin bites. Long and clinging finish reminiscent of the neighbors cherry plum tree, the one that has those intense fruits that are like too much but you always eat them anyway cause you keep walking past it….. ya, that.

Well shit, that experiment fell flat on its face. Both the Old, New and obscure world really know how to throw down a finish. It comes down to what is the right finish for each particular occasion? Do you want it so long and dynamic that you will be forced to contemplate it for over a minute each time you take a hearty sip? If the answer is no, you don’t have to start drinking grape juice or even worse, Lager. There is an infinite variety of finishes in an infinite variety of bottles for each and every singular moment shared with wine. Thank you for reading my participation in #MWWC16 and the following has nothing to do with the challenge.

It’s 4/20 today and for my little share on the long road towards not only legalization, but legitimization I’m working on a multi part project that examines pairings called Weed n’ Wine. If you’re not yet sick of my voice check out my Weed n’ Wine.

Success #MWWC15

My first post-college year has unsurprisingly been one of subdued success. The most notable, that I haven’t crashed my dad’s empty nest party and that my job lets me occasionally schmooze with the wine distributors. Also, I started this blog. Before continuing, I should introduce myself. My name is Ryly and this is my first time participating in #MWWC15. This January, when I first launched my WordPress I was lucky enough to stumble across the participants of this challenge which provided a wonderful opportunity to see how other people were writing and talking about wine. wine-stain1-3 Since I’m young, like young enough that I shouldn’t be able to talk, write, or act like I know anything whatsoever about wine, booze or the world, I decided to focus on what makes a succesful bottle of wine to me. From the eyes of the lowliest little wine peasant here is a little about success, which should literally be internalize as scarcely as possible. So, what makes a succesful bottle of wine? Is it sales or critical acclaim? Fortunately, I don’t think many people outside of the Californian super-vineyards/investment banking circles would argue that a wine’s value is determined by sales. Otherwise the most succesful wines among my peer group would be boxes of Franzia and 1.5 litre Cook’s Champagne. Talk about postapocalyptic… Franzia-e1355169646251 But what about critical acclaim? It seems like the great Sommeliers of the world must know something. Unfortunately, there are an unimaginably astounding number of great wines out there. A simple google search of ‘best wines 2014’ will bring up about 113,000,000 results. Not to say that most of those hits will be on to anything. Many of the better results are from weekend warriors pontificating in their free time on blogs like these or lists such as Clearly, there are all sorts of great wines and every year there are new competitions with new winners and probably the vast majority of these bottles, if on my table, would elicit the words “Dope” “Amazing” “Spectacular” . Just because a wine is great, even if it’s only good, doesn’t mean it’s succesful. As previously mentioned, I’m the same age as most wine lovers wayward and unmarketable children. I too also want to save the world and the reason I’m not currently beer bonging a half-gallon of Rosé is because I’ve been lucky. I doesn’t hurt that I’m also a square and spent years not getting invited to bro parties and instead wrote bad poetry and drank worse cheap reds. It was a wine tasting that saved me and I was only there because I worked for the sponsor and I never turn down a free drink. The first two tables were full of the same old poncy big words and pretentious french pronunciations, but the third and last table was something different. A local vineyard was pouring and when I say local, I mean local. Southern Oregon is a small place and I hadn’t realized the couple, who were regular customers, were also wine makers. While I approached the table, I prayed that they had never overheard me giving shoddy recommendations or mispronouncing words like Garnacha. As I swirled, aerated and looked contemplatively at the corner of the room I knew I was an imposter, but if they could see through my act, they didn’t let on. With my nose shoved in the glass, they described the flavours and holy shit, for the first time I wasn’t hearing gibberish. Even though I wasn’t spitting and a little bit buzzed, they were gracious enough to let me do a second tasting. I think it’s partially because I get spazzy when excited, and how could I not!? I could actually taste their notes and they were absolutely exquisite. As they talked about their land and the growing season, to be a cheezy-hippy about it, I could taste the richness and love they put into their vines. I couldn’t fathom spending almost thirty dollars on one bottle, but god did I want to. It was the 2012 Biodynamic Tempranillo from Upper Five Vineyards. It was because of that exact tasting that I started to look at wine as something other that a fashion statement. It was also why I started pestering my co-workers with uneducated and cloying questions (some of which have caused my near strangulation…) While sales, critical acclaim and skill all play a part in a wine’s success, for me, there will never be a more succesful bottle of wine than that Tempranillo. It was a one of a kind moment where region, taste and opportunity blended to create an eye-opening experience. Wine, for the first time, actually gave me a physical reaction other than buzzed/drunk and it was a wonderful thing. Check out the creator and host of this great challenge at Picture lifted from