By Jay Bileti
AWS Director of Member Services
Reustle is an award-winning producer in the Umpqua Valley of Oregon. While many think of Oregon as the Willamette Valley and Pinot Noir, the Umpqua is a region with a much more diverse climate supporting world-class wines from a number of grape varieties. Reustle has won awards in the top competitions for his Gruner Veltliner (a variety he pioneered in the US), Syrah and Tempranillo.
Stephen Reustle and wife Gloria are friends of the AWS and have presented a unique and fascinating program both at the National Conference and in a number of areas around the country for local chapters. Reustle has no distribution; they are direct to consumer, so they bring the wines to us!
The Reustle program is fun and, one might think, risky for Stephen. He pours his wines, blind, side by side with classic examples of their European counterparts. His Gruner vs a top-scoring Gruner from Austria. His Tempranillo vs a 97-point Grand Riserva from Rioja. His Syrah vs a top Crozes Hermitage from the northern Rhone. And finally, his Pinot Noir vs a Permier Cru Burgundy. After tasting both wines blind, the audience votes for their favorite. I won’t say Reustle wins every time, but they do win most of the time! This is a great event with excellent wines, SWAG, prizes and lots of laughs. Highly recommended.
This program is available to many AWS chapters, as Stephen and Gloria travel extensively in their motor home and would be happy to put your chapter on the schedule if they are in your area. If interested, contact Stephen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are the wines that duked it out in Arizona: