The Tasting Panel magazine

JULY 2011

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Page 84 of 120

PACIFIC NORTHWEST From a little-known, rough-around-the-edges culinary outpost 20 years ago, Oregon now boasts 14 AVAs, including those shared with Washington and Idaho. Couple that with Portland’s rising reputation as the center of the nation’s “slow food” movement and you have an irresistible draw for foodies, wine lovers and those who serve them: The Somms Of photos and story by Carolyn Patten F rom the venerable Ringside Steakhouse, now polished well beyond its post-War beginnings, to the trendy, 35-seat Le Pigeon, the city’s top restaurants are home to sophisticated sommeliers who can make a mean pairing for any budget. They’ll tell you that the proximity of so much winemaking has made frequent diners a savvier lot, eager to listen to advice. Here are some of the most heralded of the Portland sommeliers, offering their suggestions for the perfect wines to pair with their restaurant’s signature dish. Portland Marc Taylor, Restaurant Manager/ Sommelier at the Heathman Restaurant, works with 800-plus wines and one of Oregon’s largest cham- pagne collections: “With wine country so close, we have great access to the smaller, esoteric wineries.”

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