McMenamin’s Grand Lodge 95th Birthday – 03/04/2017

The McMenamin brothers have created quite a Beertopian empire in the PNW.  And today was the celebration of one of (if not the) oldest properties in their family.  The Grand Lodge in Forest Grove is a very grand estate.  Completed in 1927, the Grand Lodge was built as a retirement home for the aged and infirmed who were members of the Fraternal Order of Masons / Eastern Star or orphans of such.  It continued in this capacity until 1999 when the McMenamin’s agreed to become the new “custodians” of this glorious property.  The artwork alone is worth your time to visit.

An excerpt about the property . . . “The Grand Lodge is located at 3505 Pacific Avenue in Forest Grove, Oregon.  The lodge offers 4 restaurants and bars, Ironwork Grill, Bob’s Bar, Doctor’s Office Bar, and Pat’s Corner.  The lodge offers movies and music and they also have special events.  There is a wonderful spa called Ruby’s Spa which offers massage, body treatments, foot care, and more.  There is also a nice outdoor soaking pool and a great little gift shop for finding just the right spa essentials.  The front desk also has a gift shop with clothing, glass wear, coffee and many other wonderful items.  The lodge also has space for weddings, meetings, and private events.” And it is a very unique hotel experience.

Our goal for this day was 2-fold. . . Get stamps for our Passport and taste some regional wines.  The McMenamin’s Passport is a tool of marketing they have developed that encourages those who are fans of fun, good food and great adult beverages to venture to the various venues, brewpubs, hotels and music venues . . 54 and counting in Oregon and Washington.  The wine tasting was provided as a part of the 95th birthday celebration, and I wasn’t about to miss that.

David Hill Winery

’14 Estate Pinot Noir . . . Earthy nose, some fruit sneaking thru . . a bit acidic in the mid and a good finish.

Elk Cove Vineyards

’14 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. . . Good aromatics and fruit on the nose . .Smooth and balanced texture and good fruit on the finish.  Very nice wine.

Apolloni Vineyards

’14 Pinot Noir. . . Good fruit on the nose, balanced texture with good fruit in the mid palate, slightly mineral finish.

’13 Soleggio . . . Tuscan blend (Sangiovese, Merlot, Cab Sauv) . . . Gorgeous nose, the fruit aromas just dance.  The fruit doesn’t carry through to the mid palate as it is quite mild there and falls off dramatically at the finish.  Was hoping for more.

Montinore Estate

’16 Borealis . . . a white blend of Gewurtztraminer, Muller Thurgau, Pinot Gris and Riesling. Intensely aromatic, with a nose of tropical flowers, ripe kiwi and melon, the silky soft palate is brimming with rose petals, pink grapefruit, mango and white nectarine then finishes on a high, clean note of bright key lime.  A personal favorite

’15 Rosso di Marchesi. . . A Tuscan blend of Sangiovese, Teroldego, Legrein and Pinot Noir.  The nose on this beauty is amazing.  Tons of dark red fruit like marionberry and cherry with a hint of pie spice.  Very balanced tannins.  Finish is dry but very smooth.  To me it’s just begging for some pasta and meat sauce .  A Major home run for me

Edgefield Winery

’14 Cuvee de L’Abri Rouge. . . ( or Red Shed blend) made from of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, and Cinsault.  Reminiscent of great wines of the Southern Rhone like Chateauneuf-de-Pape.  A mild nose, not a bunch evident . . .good mid palate, lots of ripe fruit flavors going on here . . .  and a mildly tannic finish, which is to be expected.

’14 Black Rabbit Red. . . This blend is made form a host of warm weather varietals including Merlot, Cab Sauv, Cab Franc, etc.  I found a good nose on this, evident fruit. . . as well as good red fruit flavors in the mid.  The only down side for me is that the finish does go dry very quickly and quite heavily.  Lots of young tannins at work here.  Perhaps, it it’s built to age, a few years will mellow those moisture stripping rascals.


This was an enjoyable event.  From the Art treasure hunt in the Lodge to the wine tasting it was educational and satisfying.









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