(March 26, 2019; Portland, Ore.)—The Willamette Wineries Association today announced that renowned wine educator and writer Elaine Chukan Brown and a panel of winemakers will lead an exclusive Pinot noir immersion seminar on Friday, April 5th for members of the wine trade and media attending the fourth annual Willamette: The Pinot Noir Auction. The immersion seminar will offer the trade some of its very first insights into the 2017 vintage, presented through the lens of similar great vintages in the Valley’s history.

The Auction will take place on Saturday, April 6th at the Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg, Ore., and will offer 86 one-of-a-kind lots of 2017 Pinot noir and six collaborative lots of 2017 Chardonnay. “The 2017 vintage has Willamette Valley vintners excited, and Elaine Brown is uniquely qualified to guide us through this classic vintage,” says co-chair Eugenia Keegan, Oregon General Manager for Jackson Family Wines (Gran Moraine Winery, Penner-Ash, WillaKenzie, Zena Crown). “The 2017 Pinot noirs have everything we love about wines from the Willamette Valley. They are nuanced and remarkably expressive of site. We believe this vintage is destined to be remembered as a classic.” The immersion seminar will feature in-depth insights from winemakers Maggie Harrison (Antica Terra), Adam Campbell (Elk Cove Vineyards), Thomas Savre (Lingua Franca) and Harry Peterson-Nedry (RR Wines). Each panelist will present two Pinot noir wines which were made by other wineries and produced in years with growing conditions that were like that of 2017. The tasting will offer context into the characteristics that make the 2017 vintage distinct and will also highlight the wines’ aging potential.

Elaine Brown is the American Specialist at JancisRobinson.com and a contributing writer for Wine & Spirits Magazine. Her personal blog, Hawk Wakawaka Wine Reviews, has been rated among the world’s leading wine blogs, and recommended by Food & Wine, The New York Times, Saveur, The Washington Post and more. In 2019, Wine Industry Network chose Brown as one of the wine industry’s nine most inspiring people, and the prestigious International Wine & Spirits Competition named her as one of the top five Wine Communicators of the Year in the world.

“One of our goals in hosting Willamette: The Pinot Noir Auction is to offer a diverse weekend of tastings, food pairings, winemaker dinners and other memorable experiences like this seminar for members of the wine trade and media,” says 2019 co-chair Shirley Brooks, VP of Sales and Marketing for Elk Cove Vineyards. “Elaine Brown is one of the most talented and knowledgeable educators in the industry, and our panel of expert winemakers is positioned to offer a truly memorable overview of what makes Willamette Valley Pinot noir so special.”

The full schedule for the fourth annual Willamette: The Pinot Noir Auction is as follows:

Friday, April 5
Willamette Immersion Seminar 
9:00am–10:30am at The Allison Inn & Spa
Elaine Brown will lead a winemaker panel and in-depth tasting of Willamette Valley wines in preparation for the showcase of 2017 Auction wines.
Willamette Welcome Tasting Event 
11:00am-3:00pm at Domaine Drouhin Oregon and Domaine Serene
This year’s welcome party will showcase featured wines, Auction wine previews and food pairings from all 86 wineries.
Winemaker Dinners

Saturday, April 6
The Auction at The Allison Inn & Spa

10:00am: Registration Opens
10:30am-1:30pm: Auction Wine Tasting and Lunch
1:30pm – 3:30pm: Live Auction
3:30pm: The After Party

All proceeds from the Auction support the marketing, branding and education efforts of the Willamette Valley Wineries Association. Licensed members of the wine trade who are interested in attending may visit the website: willamettewines.Auction. Members of the press who are interested in attending may complete a Media Credential Request Form (willamettewines.Auction/press/).

About Willamette Valley Wineries Association 

The Willamette Valley Wineries Association (WVWA) is a non-profit industry association dedicated to achieving recognition for Oregon’s acclaimed Willamette Valley as a premier Pinot noir–producing region. Currently, the WVWA has nearly 250 members representing wineries and tasting rooms throughout the Willamette Valley region from Portland to Eugene. To learn more about The Willamette Valley Wineries Association visit: willamettewines.com

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