Ask a Winemaker

From Matt, April 18th, 2016

From the Ask a Winemaker YouTube channel, John talks about wine, winemaking, and what it all means:

You can simply hit play and watch the series dramatically unfold before your eyes, or click the playlist button upper left in the movie frame and navigate directly to the topic that intrigues you most. Here’s the series:

  • Dijon clones are a bad joke perpetrated on the Oregon wine industry (3:17)
  • What is Natural Wine? John Paul of Cameron weighs in (1:37)
  • What is Chaptalization? Why is it needed in winemaking? Part 1 of 2 (3:25)
  • When do you Chaptalize? Part 2 of 2 (2:04)
  • Native Yeast in Winemaking: John Paul of Cameron Winery (2:48)
  • Wädenswil and Pommard Clones at Cameron Winery, Oregon (2:17)
  • The soils of the Willamette Valley: John Paul of Cameron (1:49)
  • Pinot Noir: “I can’t imagine anyone not being intrigued by that grape” (1:16)
  • Wine Education 101: John Paul on Nebbiolo (1:50)
  • Wine Education 101: John Paul describes Chardonnay (2:06)
  • Wine Barrel Selection at Cameron Winery, Oregon (1:52)
  • The Cameron Funk! (2:29)
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A Wee Rant About “Natural Wines”

I am a bit perplexed by the popularity of a relatively new genre of wine: “Natural Wines”. In my opinion, this is a narrow and arbitrary classification meant to suit the marketing needs of whoever is using it. When I see a cloudy wine and am told “Oh this is a natural wine”, I am compelled to retort “I can’t think of anything more natural than gravity…maybe the winemaker should have waited to rack his wine for bottling!” And when one encounters a wine which is either oxidized or smells of fingernail polish remover or has been brutalized by a lactic acid bacteria infection, sure these are “natural processes” but they also emanate from poor winemaking practices.

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Water Stress in Oregon!?

2016 was an extremely dry and warm vintage. Because of water stress, the berries were smaller and crop smaller than usual. However, a beneficient rain in early September re-hydrated the fruit and the result is a cellar of very concentrated and wonderfully balanced wines. Get ready for a brilliant 2016 vintage of small production down the road!

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Arrivederci Dear Guido

Guido, our 18 year old Tuxedoed cat, quietly passed away on August 18. For 17 vintages, Guido was our constant companion in the cellar, in the vineyard, in the yurt.

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