Yesterday we left early to get down to McMinnville. I decided to call and confirm the room. I never do that, I don't know why I thought it would be a good idea this time. Sure enough, no record of our room. Maybe I didn't click the final "are you sure you want to book this room button". They said they would move us to the top of the waiting list, but on the biggest wine tasting weekend in Willamette valley... no such luck. We could have stayed at the motor inn, but we love the Hotel Oregon staying anywhere else would be a shame. We tasted for about 5 hours ate dinner and Rob decided to drive us home. I'd be passed out anyway so no distractions. We got home around midnight.
On this weekend every single vineyard/winery is open. That's like 175 to choose from. Most of these charge a tasting fee this weekend because the crowds are massive and they have food and music and it's a big party. They all bring out thir big guns and the wines were great. We stopped at 4 new places and then hit 2 of our favs, Elk Cove and Kramer. Elk Cove was recently named the Pacific NW Winery of the year. To my surprise, this weekend they still only charged a $5 tasting fee which was refundable with purchase. Kramer may not have the best wine you've ever had before and it's not the fanciest, but the people are so nice. It reminds me of hanging out with family. It's great wine for the price and they charged an $8 tasting fee, we tasted about 20 wines. That's unreal. They even had wine from the neighboring vineyard a few houses over, Thistle, EXCELLENT Pinot Noir. A great new find. We shut the place down, walked out with a case and I had my picture taken with Cassie, the dog. Cassie is one of the centerfolds of a new Calendar based on this book, Wine Dogs. I love it.