We bid Ari at Lumos good night and walked next door to the tasting room of Terra Vina Wines. As an unplanned stop, we didn’t know anything about this winery when we entered. Tasting room manager, Joslynn, explained that owner and winemaker Karl Dinger is a self-taught winemaker. He and wife, Carol, opened their doors under a different name in Carlton, just west of McMinnville, so you might be more familiar with it as ‘Dalla Vina’ Wines. Their estate vineyard, producing fruit for the La Famiglia label, is in the Mid-Willamette Valley, specifically the Chehalem Mountains AVA on Parrett Mountain: Riesling, Syrah and Pinot Noir. Higher elevations with marine winds bringing dense fog distinguish this AVA. But much of their fruit comes from Eastern Oregon, that would be Walla Walla AVA, and Washington’s Yakima and Columbia Valley AVA’s: Sangiovese, Tempranillo, and Bordeaux grapes, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot.
We shared a tasting, as is our norm, deciding to try all of the wines on offer. The lone white, 2012 La Famiglia Riesling opened the show with an off dry, apple and pear salad balanced by a citric acidity – nice. The 2010 Pinot Noir followed, also estate grown. As this was the point of the tasting, and our first PN from this particular AVA, we gave it our full attention: nose was cherry, berry; lots of berry on the palate with a light acid finish, quite smooth for the 13.5% alcohol it had. Sangiovese, Tempranillo (couldn’t leave without trying that one, now could I), estate grown Syrah (very nice), Cab Franc, and two blends. 2012 Primio and 2009 Oh So Red finished up the flight. All in all great wines.
Joslynn was very helpful in providing us with a last place to go that evening: The Bitter Monk Taproom. I will tell you all about the last part of the evening next time.