The word “crush”, in wine terms, refers to pressing grapes after they have been harvested in order to extract all the lovely qualities out of them for our sipping pleasure. The carbonated beverage, Grape Crush, brings up memories of sweet, candied soda pop…the sticky stuff that makes childhood dreams come true. “Crushing it”, an equally important take on the root verb and used to describe a positive experience, expresses how the recent Multisport Wine Adventure did in August in the great State of Oregon. In essence, we crushed it in Oregon.
I had the great pleasure of spending five, fun-filled days with a diverse group of travelers on the recent Oregon Multisport Wine Adventure. This trip was momentous for me for a number of reasons including the opportunity it presented to lead a group of folks, all interested in wine, through my wine “backyard”. Tromping through the Oregon landscape, stopping to pick ripe blackberries along the way, pausing to chat about important features in the Willamette Valley and Hood River areas (the Van Duzer corridor, geographic distinctions of each sub-AVA, how “Portlandia” really does ring true on so many levels…) gave me incredible satisfaction. Call it a “this is it” moment – tasting, touring, hiking, biking, canoeing, and laughing our way through Oregon’s bounty and calling it work? Unreal yet…reality.
There is something for everyone on an active wine touring trip in the Northwest and Oregon is a great, grape destination. Flying into Eugene and out of Portland, like our clients did on the recent adventure, allows for a great overview of the State and makes it easy to explore the City of Roses (Portland’s official nickname) or the beautiful coastline after the trip. The morning spent hiking around Mount Hood, Oregon’s tallest mountain at 11, 250 feet, made for some amazing photos of the Cascade mountain chain, whose volcanic deposits contributed greatly to the agricultural diversity in Oregon. Tasting pinot noir at Wy’East Vineyards (Wy’East is the Native American name for Mount Hood) before biking down through the cherry and pear orchards and into downtown Hood River? Breathtaking. Stretching out our legs on 3-5 mile walks from one vineyard to the next made for healthy appetites each evening as we noshed on meals paired with local wines at Zephyr’s favorite restaurants and wineries in each town. Extra bonus: Chinook Salmon (also called King Salmon) was in season during the Oregon Multisport Wine Adventure. Have I mentioned that pinot noir and Salmon are an amazing wine and food pairing combination? Talk about crushing it….
The next active tour with a wine component is in Puglia, Italy. Dubbed the “Puglia, Italy Biking and Food Adventure”, this trip will take its participants on a cycling tour that is sure to please with its shorter, medium, and longer biking route options through southern Italy’s dramatic, maritime landscapes. Burning calories throughout the days in order to nosh on authentic, Italian cuisine and wines by night.
Wanting to crush it on your next vacation? Check out Zephyr’s calendar of active wine, food, beer, skating, hiking, and biking trips throughout the U.S. and abroad. We hope to see you, with us, on your next adventure!