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  • Southern Oregon wineries honored in California competition

  • Southern Oregon, and in particular Rogue Valley, wineries fared well in this year's San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.
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  • Southern Oregon, and in particular Rogue Valley, wineries fared well in this year's San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.
    Bridgeview Vineyards, outside of Cave Junction, grabbed a double-gold — unanimous selection — for its 2011 Blue Moon Sweet Riesling. Pebblestone Cellars' 2012 Ellis Vineyards Viognier was also a double-gold winner. Up the freeway, Umpqua Valley's Abacela Winery picked up double golds for its 2012 Viognier and 2009 Tempranillo Reserve.
    Schmidt Family Vineyards, near Williams, racked-up four golds, seven silvers and one bronze.
    "Southern Oregon is getting the respect it deserves based on its wines," said Scott Steingraber, owner and winemaker at Kriselle Cellars outside of White City. "It's different than what it was just a few years ago and people can see the quality of wines is so much better than they ever have been."
    Steingraber, who opened the Kriselle Cellars tasting room in mid-2012, noted a narrow swath of land produced extraordinary results.
    "Out of the 14 gold medals going to Oregon wineries, six were right here in the Upper Rogue area," he said.
    Cliff Creek Cellars, Del Rio Vineyards and LaBrasseur Vineyard all struck gold in the event.
    The largest competition held in North America attracted 5,825 wines from about 1,500 wineries and 25 states.
    Kriselle wines earned two gold, two silver and two bronze awards.
    Although Steingraber, a retired engineer from Washington, has been making wine for the better part of 20 years, it wasn't until Kriselle's 2009 vintage came out two years ago that he offered it to the public.
    "We knew our vineyard site was pretty decent with a lot of round river rocks on the hillside," Steingraber said of Kriselle's vineyard with concentrated Bordeaux plantings on the east end of Sams Valley. "It creates a very low yield, but produces an intense flavor in the fruit, and it shows in the wines."
    Kriselle's 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon earned a double-gold in the San Francisco International competition two years ago.
    A public tasting with hundreds of the medal-winning wines is slated Saturday, Feb. 15, at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Tickets are $50 for early-bird buyers, $65 in advance and $80 at the door, although the event generally sells out ahead of time.
    DOUBLE GOLD
    Abacela 2012 Viognier, Umpqua Valley, $22
    Abacela 2009 South East Block, Reserve Tempranillo Reserve, Umpqua Valley, $50
    Bridgeview Vineyards 2011 Blue Moon Sweet Riesling, Oregon, $10
    Pebblestone Cellars 2012 Ellis Vineyards Viognier, Rogue Valley, $19
    GOLD
    Abacela 2012 Grenache Rosé, Umpqua Valley, $15
    Cliff Creek Cellars 2008 Sams Valley Vineyard Claret, Southern Oregon, $25
    Del Rio Vineyards 2012 Viognier, Rogue Valley, $20
    Del Rio Vineyards 2012 Pinot Gris, Rogue Valley, $16
    Kriselle Cellars 2012 Sauvignon Blanc, Rogue Valley, $21
    Kriselle Cellars 2011 Sangiovese, Rogue Valley, $28
    LaBrasseur Vineyard 2011 Ethan Cole, Rogue Valley, $28
    Schmidt Family Vineyards 2012 Chardonnay, Applegate Valley, $24
    Schmidt Family Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Franc, Applegate Valley, $34
    Schmidt Family Vineyards 2011 Pinot Noir, Southern Oregon, $34
    Schmidt Family Vineyards 2010 Tempranillo, Southern Oregon, $34
    Spangler Vineyards 2011 Claret, Southern Oregon, $27
    The Cellars at the Southern Oregon Wine Institute 2010 Pinot Noir, Umpqua Valley, $17
    SILVER
    Cliff Creek Cellars 2008 Sams Valley Vineyard Syrah, Southern Oregon, $25
    Dancin Vineyards 2011 Adagio Pinot Noir, Southern Oregon, $34
    Deer Creek Vineyards 2011 Chardonnay, Rogue Valley, $20
    Deer Creek Vineyards 2011 Pinot Gris, Rogue Valley, $20
    Deer Creek Vineyards 2012 Pinot Noir, Rogue Valley, $50
    Del Rio Vineyards 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon, Rogue Valley, $28
    Del Rio Vineyards 2011 Claret, Rogue Valley, $35
    EdenVale Winery 2006 Dolcetto, Rogue Valley, $25
    EdenVale Winery 2006 Tempranillo, Rogue Valley, $45
    Girardet 2011 Chardonnay, Umpqua Valley, $15
    Irvine Vineyards 2011 Chardonnay, Rogue Valley, $32
    Kandarian Wine Cellars 2012 Sauvignon Blanc, Oregon, $20
    Kriselle Cellars 2010 Cabernet Franc, Rogue Valley, $27
    Kriselle Cellars 2011 Di'tani, Rogue Valley, $25
    Ledger David Cellars 2010 Tempranillo, Rogue Valley, $28
    Monte Ferro 2011 Pinot Noir, Umpqua Valley, $25
    Pebblestone Cellars 2012 Ellis Vineyards Pinot Gris, Rogue Valley, $16
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