Wild Goose Vineyards 2016 Pinot Gris won top honors at the fifth annual Cascadia Wine Competition in Hood River, Oregon. The Pinot Gris earned Best White Wine and Best of Show on its way to topping the field of 948 wines from Washington, Oregon, British Columbia and Idaho.

“We received word of our eight gold medals at the Cascadia Wine Competition one at a time by email,” says Leslie Matheson, Wild Goose Vineyards & Winery marketing manager. “I kept refreshing my email and once we were at five we realized we had more golds than swimmer Michael Phelps at his last Olympics! By the end of the day we tied his 2008 gold haul. I think we had a lot more fun training than he did.”
Among the eight golds were three best of class awards and four double gold medals, a list that included the 2015 Red Horizon Meritage, a Right Bank Bordeaux style blend, as well as the 2016 God’s Mountain Riesling, Gewürztraminer 2016, Rosé 2016, Mystic River Gewürztraminer 2016, Riesling 2016 and Autumn Gold 2016.
“It’s very humbling, and it makes me very proud,” says winemaker Hagen Kruger.
“It was truly a team effort, from the vineyards right through to putting the wines into the bottle. This was also the last vintage my father ever experienced and a great tribute to him! We could not be happier.”
There is no better place to toast these wonderful wines than at Wild Goose’s patio with its expansive views of OK Fall’s landscapes and rolling vineyards. The popular Smoke & Oak Bistro with its new chef David Simenoff, will entice you with its cooking aromas to stay for a meal. He is offering up a menu inspired by the smoky flavours of the Southern US, all tied together through the freshness of local ingredients. Vineyard cuttings and wine barrels are used to smoke the meats in an authentic competition worthy smoker, imported directly from Tennessee.
Wild Goose kicks off the season with the sold-out Winemaker’s BBQ on May 12th featuring a four-year vertical tasting of Red Horizon. The 2017 Vineyard Stage Concert Series launches with Grammy-nominated, singer, songwriter, harmonica player and drummer Randy McAllister on July 29th. Nearly Neil’s tribute celebrating the vibrant and exciting times of Neil Diamond’s early days is next up August 26th and the 4th Annual Beale Street Festival, a tribute to the annual Memphis Blues Festival, rounds out the series September 30th. Tickets include seating, a Smoke & Oak Bistro buffet meal along with a glass of wine.

(pictured: Award-winning winemaking crew (l-r) cellar hand, Tanya Booth, winemaker Nik Kruger & sr. winemaker Hagen Kruger)

~ Elaine Davidson