Oregon Winery Finds Creative Solution for Tainted Grape Harvests

When wildfires devastated the Pacific Northwest in 2020, winemakers faced the challenge of tainted grape harvests due to soot and acrid smoke. However, Patricia Green Cellars in Oregon decided to turn this setback into an opportunity for innovation. They partnered with Oregon distiller Lynsee Sardell of Big Wild Spirits to transform their ruined wine into brandy and create a unique pair of whiskeys.

Under the name Patty Green Distillers, head winemaker Jim Anderson and associate winemaker Matt Russell collaborated with Sardell to salvage the damaged grapes and wine. Their goal was to showcase a sense of terroir by using locally grown heritage grain varietals. The team believed that whiskey, especially single strain barley whiskeys, could be just as expressive of Oregon’s exceptional landscape as wine.

The winery had approximately 12,000 gallons of undrinkable Pinot Noir due to smoke taint, which Sardell was able to distill into brandy. This brandy became the base for their inaugural releases of whiskey and brandy blends. The first release, called Multifarious, is a blend of whiskey and brandy made from three different types of malted barley. It features notes of dried fruits, earthen spices, molasses, tea, oak, and ginger snaps.

The second release, Purple Karma Pinnacle, is a more limited and expensive option. It is named after an ancient Himalayan barley grain varietal that had likely never been used to make whiskey before. Aged for 2.5 years in repurposed ex-Pinot Noir barrels, this expression offers notes of fruit, tobacco, spice, and oaky sweetness.

Both whiskeys, Multifarious and Purple Karma Pinnacle, can be purchased directly from the Patricia Green Cellars website. The brandy produced from the tainted grape harvest is also available for purchase. For those seeking smoke-taint free options, the winery offers their Pinot Noir for sale through various online retailers.

By creatively repurposing their damaged grapes and collaborating with a distiller, Patricia Green Cellars has found an innovative solution to overcome the challenges caused by wildfires. Their whiskey and brandy blends not only salvage the impacted harvest but also offer a distinctive representation of Oregon’s unique terroir.

FAQ Section:

Q: What did Patricia Green Cellars do with their tainted grape harvest?
A: Patricia Green Cellars partnered with Oregon distiller Lynsee Sardell to transform their ruined wine into brandy and create a pair of whiskeys.

Q: What is the name of the collaboration between Patricia Green Cellars and Lynsee Sardell?
A: The collaboration is called “Patty Green Distillers.”

Q: What is the goal of Patty Green Distillers?
A: The goal is to showcase a sense of terroir by using locally grown heritage grain varietals in their whiskey production, similar to how wine expresses the landscape.

Q: How much undrinkable Pinot Noir did the winery have due to smoke taint?
A: The winery had approximately 12,000 gallons of undrinkable Pinot Noir.

Q: What did Lynsee Sardell distill the tainted Pinot Noir into?
A: Lynsee Sardell distilled the tainted Pinot Noir into brandy, which became the base for their whiskey and brandy blends.

Q: What are the names of the Patty Green Distillers’ whiskey releases?
A: The first release is called Multifarious, and the second release is called Purple Karma Pinnacle.

Q: What are the flavor profiles of Multifarious and Purple Karma Pinnacle whiskeys?
A: Multifarious features notes of dried fruits, earthen spices, molasses, tea, oak, and ginger snaps. Purple Karma Pinnacle offers notes of fruit, tobacco, spice, and oaky sweetness.

Q: Where can the whiskeys and brandy be purchased?
A: The whiskeys and brandy can be purchased directly from the Patricia Green Cellars website.

Q: Can smoke-taint free options be purchased from the winery?
A: Yes, the winery offers their Pinot Noir for sale through various online retailers for those seeking smoke-taint free options.

Key Terms/Jargon:

1. Terroir: The complete natural environment in which a particular wine is produced, including factors such as the soil, climate, and topography, which influence the flavor characteristics of the wine.

2. Pinot Noir: A red wine grape variety known for its soft and elegant character, commonly associated with regions like Burgundy, France.

3. Brand: A distilled spirit made from fermented fruit juice or mash.

4. Malted Barley: Barley that has been germinated and then dried in a kiln, used as a key ingredient in whiskey production.

Related Links:

Patricia Green Cellars Website: Official website of Patricia Green Cellars where the whiskeys and brandy can be purchased.
Big Wild Spirits: Website of Lynsee Sardell’s distillery, Big Wild Spirits, where you can find more information about their products and collaborations.