Highlights from IPNC’s Vineyard Tour and Winery Lunch

Posted by: Katie Schoen in: Food/Beverage -

002This year’s IPNC (International Pinot Noir Celebration) started Friday morning with overcast skies and cool temperatures, rare for this famed weekend at Linfield College in the heart of Oregon wine country.


belle-pente-vineyard1Our group spent the day at Belle Pente Vineyard in Carlton, Ore. As the clouds disappeared, we toured the vineyards, learning about the different blocks of Pinot Noir grapes within the vineyard.


blending-seminar1Everyone was then broken into smaller groups of 6 (or so) for a blending exercise, in which we developed a Pinot blend from 3 different blocks of grapes. Cyril Frechier (Sommelier, Campagne, Seattle, Wash.), Fiona Beckett and Fiona Sims (Wine/Food Writers, The 2 Fionas, UK) judged each group’s blend, and much to our excitement, our group won!


katie-at-lunchFollowing the blending exercise, we tasted Pinots from around the world, including Oregon’s own Sokol Blosser and Flowers from Sonoma.

We then moved to a four-course lunch, provided by Portland’s Ben Bettinger of Beaker & Flask.

0141First course, cool corn chowder with shrimp; second course, blackened cod with seasonal vegetables; third course, lamb from the Belle Pente property (too busy eating to take a photo); and fourth course, panna cotta with black pepper, seasonal fruit and a shortbread cookie. My oh my, can you say delicious?

dessertAs if all of this wasn’t delightful enough, once we returned to campus, we visited the Moonstruck Chocolate booth, where we sampled truffles, as well as the not-yet-released Single Origin dark and milk chocolates. A wonderful cap to our fun-filled day, that is, until we moved on to the dinner festivities.

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