Drink, Dine, and Learn at the 2015 International Pinot Noir Celebration

International Pinot Noir Celebration

Great Pinot Noirs were long known to come only from France’s Burgundy region, but today, highly regarded bottles are produced in a number of cooler climates around the globe, including Oregon. In fact, the varietal single-handedly put Oregon on the wine-growing map, and the state sent a resounding message to oenophiles everywhere that California wasn’t the only noteworthy Pinot Noir grower in the US.

So, McMinnville, Oregon—surrounded by the vineyards of the Willamette Valley, the epicenter of wine production in the state—is a fitting place to host the International Pinot Noir Celebration (IPNC), as it has on the last full weekend in July for the past 29 years. This year, the IPNC runs from Friday, July 24 through Sunday, July 26, 2015. It takes place on the campus of Linfield College.

About the International Pinot Noir Celebration

As you might infer from the name, the IPNC is dedicated to celebrating one single wine varietal, Pinot Noir. The first event took place in 1987, following two years of planning by some of Oregon’s winemakers, wine lovers, restaurateurs, and retailers.

While there is, of course, a focus on spotlighting local producers among the 70+ wineries that participate, wineries from around the world take part. Since the event’s first year, 323 wineries from outside the US have participated, including more than 200 from France, over 40 from New Zealand, as well as others from Australia, Italy, Germany, Canada, Switzerland, Chile, Austria, South Africa, Spain, Argentina, England, and Israel.

The IPNC also emphasizes Oregon’s industry-leading farm-to-table culture. More than 60 renowned area chefs (as well as a few international culinary stars) prepare intriguing meals for the event using locally grown and raised ingredients.

What Goes on at the International Pinot Noir Celebration?

The three days of the 2015 IPNC are packed from morning till night with wine and food-centric activities and offerings, including breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, or brunch on Sunday. On Friday morning, participants are introduced at the opening ceremony, taking place 8:30 to 9:15 am on the lawn at Riley Hall.

Event attendees have opportunities to take vineyard tours, sit in on the Grand Seminar (this year’s topic is Champagne and sparkling wines) and any of a number of other intimate seminars relating to Pinot Noir, hear expert guest speakers, go to book signings, and of course sniff and sample thrilling lineups of Pinot Noirs from around the world. This year, there will be more than 30 wineries from Oregon, about 15 from California, and others from Canada, France, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.

You can see the complete 2015 International Pinot Noir Celebration itinerary at www.ipnc.org/daily_schedule.php. Also, view the full listings of participating wineries at www.ipnc.org/wineries.php and of participating chefs at www.ipnc.org/chefs.php.

Eric Mohrman is a freelance travel and food writer. Coincidentally, he enjoys traveling, eating, drinking, and writing. He lives in downtown Orlando and invites you to connect with him on LinkedIn.

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