The Okanogan Valley extends from Eastern British Columbia into North Central Washington. Although there are dozens of wineries on the Canadian side of the Valley, there is only one that I’m aware of on the US side – Gold Digger Cellars, located just minutes from the border in Oroville, Washington.
Gold Digger has recently released it’s wines under a second label; Okanogan Estate & Vineyards. The vineyards are located on the slopes surrounding Lake Osoyoos, which also straddles the US/Canadian border. If you’ve ever traveled to this part of the state you know that the summers are generally characterized by intensely hot days and cool evenings, a climate that is ideal for growing many varieties of wine producing grapes.
I recently tried the Okanogan Estate & Vineyards 2004 Pinot Grigio (about $13) earlier this month and was really impressed with the way this wine is drinking right now.
It begins with fragrant melon and floral aromas and is loaded with pear, apple and citrus flavors. Crisp acidity, the signature of the Pinot Grigio grape, is topped by the bonus of a super-long, faintly sweet finish that adds to the complexity and character of the wine. Extremely complimentary with food, you could pair this with a number of medium cheeses, seafood such as crab, snapper or halibut, or poultry. This is just a nice, versatile white wine that I really think you’re going to enjoy.
For more information on Okanogan Estate & Vineyards go to www.okanoganwine.com or phone (509) 476-3646.