Washington has Pinot envy. The state’s vintners look across the Columbia River at Oregon and see a neighbor that has established a firm connection with wine drinkers. Oregon equals PInot Noir. And Pinot Noir is popular. Easy.
The Washington guys wish they could find an identity that wine drinkers could latch onto as easily. They don’t have the soil or climate to make Pinot Noir, and they are quite happy to leave that variety, so fickle to grow and make well, to the Oregonians. But they pine for an easy-to-understand hook to make their wines simpler to market. The topic came up again and again last week as I visited veteran vintners and bright lights of the new wave in the state.
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