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Wine for a cause

Rotary Club raffle is the group's biggest fundraiser of the year
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Ticket-holders can present their raffle tickets to receive free wine tastings at eight tasting rooms in the Bear Creek and Applegate valleys as well as a half-price flight with a food purchase at Liquid Assets Wine Bar in Ashland. Photo courtesy of the Ashland Rotary Club
 Posted: 9:50 AM April 25, 2013

Do you feel lucky? The winner of a $10 raffle ticket will receive four cases of wine with all bottles valued at more than $50. The annual fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Ashland continues until the drawing on May 16.

Even before the winner is announced, ticket-holders can present their raffle tickets to receive free wine tastings at eight tasting rooms in the Bear Creek and Applegate valleys, as well as a half-price flight with a food purchase at Liquid Assets Wine Bar in Ashland.

Tickets can be presented for free tastings in Ashland at Grizzly Peak Winery and Dana Campbell Vineyards and other tasting rooms until the offer expires May 31.

The raffle is the Rotary Club of Ashland's largest fundraising event, and it helps fund the Easter egg hunt in Lithia Park and other events and service projects.

Last year, Jeanne Denning of Ashland won the raffle ticket grand prize.

She now has such a bounty of wine that she brings bottles as a hostess gift when she's invited to dinner. She gives away some when she stays at friends' houses in Palm Springs, Phoenix and the Puget Sound area, and she donates wine to fundraisers including one at the Ashland Tennis and Fitness Club.

"What a conversation piece this has been," Denning says, a widow who moved here three years ago after retiring as a financial adviser in Olympia, Wash., and living briefly in Montana.

"When someone points me out and says, 'She's the one who won the wine,' strangers all want to meet me."

Twelve of the bottles were enjoyed in one night in July when she hosted the Ashland Newcomers Wine Group, founded by Diane and Chuck Reiling of Medford.

That night, they tasted wines from across the Rogue Valley, with syrahs from Folin Cellars and Cowhorn Vineyards, clarets from RoxyAnn Winery and Trium Wines, white blends from Plaisance Ranch and Rosella's Vineyard, and a semillon-sauvignon blanc blend from Agate Ridge Vineyard.

The 70 wine club members meet almost monthly and tour local tasting rooms and host house parties. Contact Chuck Reiling at for information.

Recently, they gathered at Dana Campbell Vineyards' new hilltop tasting room in Ashland and Del Rio Vineyards in Gold Hill for "sipping and socializing," as Reiling calls it.

"We are hoping to find a volunteer host so we can do a malbec tasting in May," Reiling says. "We also have high hopes that one of our members will win the Rotary Club wine raffle this year, too."

The Rotary Club's grand prize this year is four cases of wine, with each bottle valued at more than $50.

There is a 2008 pinot noir from Domaine Serene in Oregon and 2005 El Molino Pinot Noir from Napa Valley.

Included in the cache is a 2002 RoxyAnn Claret from Medford, 2011 Elevens made with Rogue Valley Grenache and 2003 Estate Tempranillo from Abacela in Roseburg.

Napa Valley cabernet sauvignons range from a 2001 Silver Oak and 2002 Caymus Vineyards to a 2003 Hewitt, 2003 BV Georges la Tour and 2004 Moon Mountain.

There is a 2009 Rockwall Chardonnay and a 2009 Carver Sutro Petite Sirah. Zinfandels include 2009 Rockwall and 2007 and 2008 Rosenblum.

Italian reds donated for the prize are from Brunello Di Montalcino and Amarone Della Valpolicella. To complete a meal, there is a 2008 Provenance Port.

The Rotary Club of Ashland's $10 wine raffle tickets are available from Ashland Rotary members or coordinators David Lively and Kerry KenCairn, who can be reached at 541-488-3194 or

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