The light yellow 2021 A to Z Wineworks Oregon Riesling has a hint of lime green as it shines in the glass. Both floral and fruity aromatics abound -- honeysuckle, hibiscus, apple-blossom and other white flowers, apricot, white peach, lime zest, lychee, gooseberry and mandarin orange lead to rose tea, lemon verbena, even lime cordial notes. The wine is lively and buoyant on the palate leading with tangy acidity followed by a slight honey sweetness and juicy flavors. There are hints of grapefruit, apple, lime juice and honeydew melon flavors as well as candied ginger, spearmint, even orange Triple Sec. The structure is round and balanced with just a touch of residual sugar lending a nice weight to the mouthfeel before a long, refreshing finish. The 2021 A to Z Wineworks Oregon Riesling is a true delight.
Pair with spicy, salty, and complex cuisine like Indian, Asian, Spanish, North African, and Central & South American, as well as simple, pleasant dishes like a stew from Alsace.
A to Z Wineworks was established in 2002 by four Oregon wine industry veterans to consistently offer quality wines that capture the Essence of Oregon. Five times named a ‘Best for the World’ B Corp, A to Z’s commitment to excellence is matched by a belief in fair value and sustainability in business as well as farming. Recognition for A to Z wines as offering dependable quality for great value continues today, making A to Z the top-selling Oregon wine brand.
As the the largest region in the greater Southern Oregon AVA, bordering California, the Rogue Valley AVA grows the most diverse array of grape varieties compared to any other Oregon appellation.
The Rogue Valley AVA is actually made up of three adjacent river valleys—not just one as its name suggests—Bear Creek, Applegate and Illinois. These valleys extend from the foothills of the Siskiyou Mountains, a coastal sub range of the Klamath Mountains. Most Rogue Valley vineyards are planted on hillsides at elevations of 1,200 to 2,000 feet where soils are metamorphic, sedimentary and volcanic.
On one end Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Tempranillo, Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc benefit from a warm and dry climate. To the west end of the Rogue Valley, cool-climate grapes like Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Muscat and Gewürztraminer do best. Dolcetto, Grenache and Zinfandel also grow in the Rogue Valley AVA.
Early European settlers first started growing grapes here in the 1840s, the most famous of whom was a pioneer named, Peter Britt. He also opened Oregon’s first official winery (which later closed in 1907). Today, besides its great wines, the region is known for the Britt Music & Arts festival, which inhabits Peter Britt’s former hillside estate, and the Ashland, Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining its identity. A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, this versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Somm Secret—Given how difficult it is to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling from the label, here are some clues to find the dry ones. First, look for the world “trocken.” (“Halbtrocken” or “feinherb” mean off-dry.) Also a higher abv usually indicates a drier Riesling.