Oregon Wine 2019

These Are the 5 Best Not-Chardonnays in Oregon Under $40

Great bottles that aren't the most popular white wine.

Edited by Ramona DeNies By Maggie Strom September 23, 2019 Published in the October 2019 issue of Portland Monthly

Who picked these wines? Known as “Grape Mami” at off-kilter wine bar Canard, Maggie Strom grew up in an Iowa bowling alley and came by her wine education through the school of hard knocks and extensive travel near and far.

The Eyrie Vineyards 2017 Chasselas Doré, Dundee Hills Eyrie is the true OG of the Willamette Valley. Grown organically, this is an old grape varietal from the Jura region in Switzerland. (I swoon hard on wines from here.) Winner all around, as it hits the nail on the head with both solid structure and supreme freshness. Buy Eyrie Vineyards, $27

Kelley Fox 2018 Barbie Pinot Blanc, Willamette Valley Kelley Fox is a legend/force/mystic mama. This wine honors Fox’s mother, a fine artist and white wine lover. (The front label is actually a painting by none other than Barbie herself.) A serious pinot blanc: dry, precise, tropical fruit for days, with grapes sourced from the lovely Dusschee family at Freedom Hill outside of Monmouth. Buy Wines on Broadway, $35

Goodfellow Family Cellars 2016 Clover Pinot Gris, Ribbon Ridge Oregon native Marcus Goodfellow’s label says it all: “Believe in the vines, have faith in tradition, imagine the possibilities, love what you do.” A manifesto I can get down with. Expect honey—but it’s equally racy, and perfectly balanced on the finish. It’s rare to see so much acidity in a pinot gris. Buy Fred Meyer, $20

Holden 2016 Layne Vineyard Vermentino, Applegate Valley I firmly believe winemaker Sterling Whitted is a savant with a bright future. His wines are some of the most thought-provoking and compelling coming out of Oregon. Sipping this one, expect summer sunshine vibes of citrus and fresh herbs. Stock up now: come January, you’ll be thanking me. (Ya welcome.) Buy 1856 Bottleshop, $21

Montebruno 2015 Gewürztraminer, Columbia Gorge Joe Pedicini made his way to Oregon to brew beer but, in 2003, fell hard for Willamette Valley winemaking. Thoughtful and made with care, his wines translate his spirit. This bone-dry, skin-contact wine is funky, full of stone fruit and minerality. Nothing added, no filtration, no funny business. Buy Dame, The Portland Bottle Shop, $21

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