2010 Call for Entries Now Open!

January 13, 2010 at 1:20 am (judging) (, , , , , , , )

It’s hard to believe that the 2010 Portland Indie Wine & Food Festival is less than four months away!  We’ve been very busy here at Indie headquarters gearing up for the event and are eagerly anticipating another great year.

As you may have seen on our twitter and facebook accounts, we are now accepting wine submissions for the 2010 event.  Last year we received a record 194 wines for judging- and we’re looking forward to receiving even more this year!  If you are  (or know of) a small, Oregon craft producer,  now is the time to submit wine for Indie judging!

The deadline to enter wine is Friday, March 2nd at 5:30pm, so head over to our website for more details!

Official rules, Frequently Asked Questions and more information can be found here.

PS: Don’t forget that tickets for the 2010 festival are now on sale and can be purchased on our website!


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2009 Official Indie Wineries!

April 2, 2009 at 5:16 am (Event Details, judging, Restaurants) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Indie Logo

The Portland Indie Wine Festival Announces Selected Wineries for 2009
Forty of Oregon’s premier craft wineries will pour at the fifth annual Portland Indie Wine Festival on May 2nd

The fifth annual Portland Indie Wine Festival has announced the names of the 40 Oregon craft wineries selected to pour their artisanal wines at the PIWF Grand Tasting, held Saturday, May 2nd from 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in Northwest Portland’s Industrial District. Sixty-one wines will be poured in the Portland Wine Project’s new 10,000 square foot urban winery, alongside some of the city’s top restaurants.

“This was a record-setting year in terms of the diversity, quantity and quality of the wine entries,” said Lisa Donoughe, PIWF founder. An all-time high of 194 wines were submitted by 69 wineries, many of whom have just released their first or second vintages. “We’re excited to be a part of an artisanal wine movement that is garnering national attention for these amazing small producers,” adds Donoughe.

Selected wineries (in alphabetical order)

1789 Wines
Anam Cara Cellars
Ancient Cellars
Apolloni Vineyards
ArborBrook Vineyards
Artisanal Wine Cellars
Barking Frog Winery
Big Table Farms
Boedecker Cellars
Capitello Wines
Carlton Cellars
Carlton Hill Wine Company
Christopher Bridge Cellars
Coeur De Terre Vineyard
Dukes Family Vineyards
Et Fille
Folin Cellars
Gino Cuneo Cellars
Hawkins Cellars
J. Scott Cellars
Johan Vineyards
Kelly Fox Wines
Longsword Vineyard
Misty Oaks Vineyard
Monks Gate
Nuthatch Cellars
Pudding River Wine Cellars
Quady North
Ribbon Ridge Vineyard
Rizzo Winery
Seufert Winery
Seven of Hearts
Thistle Wines
Three Angles Wine Cellar
VIDON Vineyard
WildAire Cellars
Winderlea Vineyard & Winery
Zenas Wines

The wines were selected in a comprehensive blind tasting conducted on March 9th, 2009 at the Hotel Vintage Plaza. The judging panel consisted of 10 wine professionals, including winemaker Dick Erath (Founder of Erath Vineyards), wine and spirits writer Toby Cecchini (New York Times, GQ), sommelier Erica Landon (Ten 01), restaurateur Kimberly Paley (Paley’s Place) and winemaker Jason Lett (BlackCap of Oregon, Eyrie Vineyards). For a complete list of 2009 judges, please visit http://www.indiewinefestival.com/judges.php.

On May 2nd, join the independent producers that represent the heart and soul of Oregon’s world-class wine industry at the Portland Wine Project, located in Northwest Portland’s Industrial District. The fifth annual Portland Indie Wine Festival is the opportunity to meet the next generation of winemakers from emerging cellars across the state while enjoying small plates from local restaurants and chefs. Restaurant partners include Alma Chocolates, The Country Cat Dinnerhouse & Bar, Davis Street Tavern, Marché, Pazzo Ristorante, Phresh Organic Catering, Pyramid Brewery and Restaurant, Red Star Roasthouse & Tavern, Simpatica Catering and Dining Hall, Ten 01, Whole Foods and Wildwood.

Tickets are now on sale, and may be purchased online at www.indiewinefestival.com. General admission is $75 with tasting times from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. and VIP admission is $125 with tasting times from 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

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Indie Judging Photos

April 1, 2009 at 7:17 pm (Indie Events, judging) (, , , , )

On Ice

As you know, Indie judging took place a few weeks ago.  Our friends at Holland Studios took some amazing photos to document the day.  Check out the judging photos on our flickr account, here.

PS: Today’s the day we’ll be announcing the 40 wineries selected to pour at this year’s Festival!  Stay tuned for the big announcement…

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Judging Recap

March 18, 2009 at 6:20 am (Event Details, Indie Events, judging) (, , , , , , , )

1 day.  194 wines.  10 judges.  29 tweets. 

Judging for the 2009 Indie Wine Festival was a definite success!  Volunteers arrived at the Hotel Vintage Plaza at 7 in the morning for final preparations to make sure the day would run smoothly (and it did!).  By the time judges started arriving at 9, we were running like a well-oiled machine! 

We can’t say enough about how wonderful all of our Indie judges were.  Tasting 194 wines (an Indie record!) in a single day is a daunting task, but the judges accomplished it beautifully and professionally.  It was so interesting to hear what each of the judges was looking for in the wine.  This is especially true of the differences between the winemaker and non-winemaker judges!  Each wine was tasted (and sometimes re-tasted), and in the end the judges- via blind scoring- were able to select the 40 wines that will be poured at the Festival in May.  The winning wines will be announced at the beginning of April. 

By 6:00 in the evening, after a day full of wine, we were all ready for a beer, so we headed downstairs to Pazzo and enjoyed their great happy hour deals while recapping the great day.

Thank you to everyone who worked so hard to make judging go so well.  With a crew this great, we can’t wait until the next Indie event!  Make sure you buy your tickets so that you can taste the winning wines and see if you agree with the judges’ decisions!

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Indie Judging Tomorrow!

March 8, 2009 at 9:34 pm (Event Details, Indie Events) (, , , )

Judging for the 2009 Festival will be taking place tomorrow, Monday, March 9.  We’ll be live-blogging and tweeting throughout the day, so be sure to stay tuned…


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Final Judges Announced!

March 6, 2009 at 9:23 am (Event Details, Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

We are very excited to introduce you to the final group of this year’s Indie Wine Festival judges…Check back later this week for exciting news about Monday’s judging event!

Toni KetrenosToni Ketrenos: Market Beer and Wine Merchandiser, New Seasons

Toni brings a world of knowledge to the judging table.  Her passion for wine was born while studying abroad in Paris as part of her studies at Linfield College in McMinnville.  The wines she experienced in France inspired her, and when she returned to Oregon she took full advantage of Linfield’s proximity to Oregon’s wine country by getting a job in the tasting room at Rex Hill Vineyards in Newberg.  Toni continued to work in the tasting room while she finished her degree in Communications/Journalism, expanding her wine knowledge and helping to plan special events at the vineyard. 

Upon graduation Toni pursued a career in journalism, but when her employer went under she returned to her love of wine, first working a crush and then as a full-time wine steward.  She started with New Seasons as a wine buyer in 2001 and currently works as their Market Beer and Wine Merchandiser.  Toni’s love of wine has taken her around the world, from Italy to Champagne and Burgundy.  She also travels frequently to vineyards around the Northwest, keeping up all of the region’s exciting small producers.  When she’s not busy with work, Toni enjoys gardening and cooking for friends.

Kimberly PaleyKimberly Paley: Co-Owner, Paley’s Place

Kimberly is a woman who has a deep passion for wine.  This passion first blossomed in the south of France, where she was traveling after teaching a jazz dance workshop in Montpellier.  (Kimberly is a gifted dancer who trained at the Martha Graham School in New York.)  She credits a Bandol Rose from Domaine Tempier that she experienced while abroad for inspiring her interest in wine.  Upon her return to America, Kimberly was tireless in her effort to learn about wine, reading, studying and tasting all she could.  

When she and her husband, Chef Vitaly Paley, escaped the concrete jungle for the lush Oregon landscape, Kimberly continued her quest for wine knowledge, this time with the help of Oregon wine pioneers like David Lett, Dick Erath, and Dick Ponzi.  She views trusting her senses and enjoying the wine as two of the most important aspects of experiencing wine, and encourages others to do the same.  Kimberly is in charge of the wine list at Paley’s Place, the beloved Portland restaurant she co-owns with her husband.  

Erica LandonErica Landon: Sommelier, Ten 01

Erica began her career in 1999 as the assistant wine steward at Oregon’s landmark Timberline Lodge. In 2000, she joined the Dundee Bistro where she worked with the seminal Ponzi wine family for four years.  During that time in the Willamette Valley, Erica became involved with the International Pinot Noir Celebration (IPNC) as a Maitre d’ Hotel, where she coordinated wine service for the Willamette Valley’s flagship festival.

Erica left the Willamette Valley for Portland in 2005 to serve as manager and sommelier at the prestigious Heathman Restaurant and Bar before landing at Portland’s Ten 01  in late 2006. There, she continues to serve as general manager and sommelier.  Landon has completed the “Innovative Restaurant Wine Program” class at the Culinary Institute of America in California, received sensory analysis training from Vinquiry in Napa Valley, and earned her Sommelier Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild and the Court of Master Sommeliers. She is a member of the board of directors for the IPNC. Erica enjoys cooking and spending time with her significant other and her dogs Kira and Finn.

Dick ErathDick Erath: Winemaker, Erath Winery

Dick is a true pioneer of Oregon wine.  He moved from San Francisco to the northern Willamette Valley in 1967 with a dream to produce world-class pinot noir, wine that would rival the French Burgundies that first inspired him.  His early days in Oregon were not easy; he and his family lived in an unheated log cabin and Dick worked tirelessly to tend to his fruit.  He planted his first vines in the late 1960’s and forty years later, his legacy is still growing. 

Dick has made immeasurable contributions to the world of wine.  His impact on Oregon wine is too great to cover in such a short bio, so for more about Dick and Erath Winery, check out The Boys Up North- Dick Erath and the Early Oregon Winemakers, the book written about him by Paul Pintarich.  We are truly honored to have Dick as a judge, and we look forward to hearing what he, as an Oregon wine pioneer, thinks of all the great wines featured at Indie.

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Four More Indie Judges Announced!

March 4, 2009 at 8:17 am (Event Details, Indie Events) (, , , , , , )

Please join us in welcoming four more judges to the Festival: Jason Lett, Rich Cushman, Randy Goodman, and Cole Danehower!

Jason LettJason Lett: Winemaker, Black Cap Wines

You can say that Jason was born to make great wine!  The son of Eyrie Vineyard founder and Oregon wine legend David Lett, Jason has made quite a name for himself in the world of fine wine.  After growing up on his family’s vineyard in Oregon, Jason spent most of his summers as a teen working and living in Burgundy.  He has also worked on vineyards in Germany, Switzerland and New Zealand.  Jason returned to Oregon after graduating with a degree in Botany from the University of New Mexico.  In 2003, he became the managing winegrower at Bishop Creek Vineyard.  Jason left Bishop Creek in 2005 to take over the vineyards and winemaking at Eyrie, the place where his wine journey began. 

In addition to his duties at Eyrie, Jason has his own solo winemaking project- Black Cap, a pinot noir that had its first vintage in 2002.  When not busy with his many winemaking and managing duties, Jason can be found spending time with his wife and daughters on their farm in McMinnville.  Click here for a recent interview with Jason on viticulture.

Rich CushmanRich Cushman: Winemaker, Viento Wines

Rich is the winemaker at Viento Wines.  A native Oregonian, he has been making wine for over 25 years!  After studying for two years in the Masters program in Enology at UC Davis, Rich traveled to Germany, where he apprenticed at the Burklin-Wolf Vineyard.  Rich’s winemaking philosophy is straightforward: to make wines that are balanced and consistently good to drink.  He strives to bring out the best in the grapes without over-processing.  Rich’s vast experience in establishing successful vineyards and winemaking have made him a very sought after wine consultant.  His extensive knowledge of Oregon vineyards and much respected opinion will be great assets to our judging panel.

Randy GoodmanRandy Goodman: Sommelier and Owner, Bar Avignon

Randy brings more than 20 years of experience to the Festival.  No stranger to professional wine tasting, he has served as a judge at San Francisco’s annual Wine Competition and the Tri-Cities Northwest Wine Competition.  He’s also no stranger to the Indie Wine Festival; this will be his fourth experience as an Indie judge!  Hailing from Northern California, Randy is an acclaimed sommelier and restaurateur.  His experience includes serving as sommelier at San Francisco’s acclaimed Carnelian Room and opening Portland’s Wildwood Restaurant and Bar (where he worked for over thirteen years).  His latest venture is Bar Avignon, an acclaimed bar/restaurant that Randy opened in Summer of 2008 with his wife, Nancy.  Randy holds a degree in Oenology from UC Davis and has completed advanced coursework for the Guild of Master Sommelier. 

 Cole DanehowerCole Danehower: Co-Publisher and Wine Editor, Northwest Palate Magazine

Cole is another highly respected member of Oregon’s wine community.  After working in executive marketing positions in Silicon Valley for nearly 20 years, Cole decided that his life needed to change, so he packed up and headed north to lush Oregon countryside.  Since arriving in Oregon, Cole has become a fixture in the northwest’s epicurean scene.  He  is the co-owner, co-publisher, and wine editor of Northwest Palate, a magazine that focuses on the wine, food, and lifestyle of the Pacific Northwest.  Cole is a James Beard Journalism award-winner and has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle and The Oregonian, among others.   

In addition to his numerous other writing credits, Cole founded the Oregon Wine Report, which gives readers great information about the wines, wineries, and winemakers  of Oregon.  Cole has judged many wine competitions, and his palate and attention to a wine’s purity, balance, and character are highly regarded.  We are very excited for Cole’s return to the Festival!  For a fun and informative read, check out Cole’s blog, Inspired Imbiber 2.0.

Check back Thursday for the announcement of the final four Indie judges!

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Inside the PIWF judging…

April 19, 2008 at 1:05 am (Guest blogger, Indie Events, Uncategorized) (, , )

For an inside look at the PIWF judging from the eyes of an Indie winemaker, check out the Boedecker Cellars blog.

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