The trouble with wine is that every bottle feels like a gamble. Unless you’ve got the privilege to only buy what you’ve tasted, the contents of a bottle are elusive. That leaves most of us gaping at shelves and menus like zombies, left guessing what bottle will best satisfy the mood of an evening or food pairing. Add in elements like vintage variation, winemaking style, and blending, and even brand-name wines challenge the most educated consumers.
Wines from the Pacific Northwest, however, defy those challenges. The third- and fourth- largest wine producers in the United States, Oregon and Washington boast steady, reliable climates that yield wines that are wonderfully consistent, both in terms of flavor and across brands and vintages. That translates to dependable wines and ease at the store, because these wines taste similar each and every year, and from brand to brand. When it comes to value in winemaking, reliability is a cornerstone.
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