DRINK LOCAL: De Vino Veritas: Paschal Winery
(Editor’s Note: The Drink Local Column makes anonymous visits to randomly chosen vineyards and wineries to discover the truth about wine—De Vino Veritas—in Southern Oregon.)
What causes you to change your mind about a place? When you step out onto the balcony at Paschal Winery, the stunning views of the Bear Creek Valley and surrounding mountains erase impressions of Exit 21 and the stretch of sprawl between Ashland and Phoenix. Your companion is likely to say, “I can’t believe we’re in Talent.”
Some of Paschal’s wines fit the view. The delicious 2015 Viognier would make an excellent choice when you arrive as a guest to Thanksgiving Dinner. At this time of year, the 2014 Pinot Gris will ease your suffering on a 100+ degree afternoon in the Rogue Valley. A glass of Jill’s Rosé inspired landscape comparisons to Tuscany and significant discussion over the progress of Western civilization in the 2000 years since Ancient Rome’s glory.
Then you wonder why the staff, certainly friendly and helpful, would not venture out to the balcony to pour the rest of your flight, even with only two other customers. You notice the dented, Home-Depot patio furniture, both on the deck and inside the tasting room. The traffic noise from I-5 drifts into your conversation on the balcony.
These questions lead you back to the wine. Where were the grapes grown? At Paschal, roughly 60 percent grow on the property and play the leading role in the Pinot Gris, the Viognier, the rosé, the Pinot Noir, and the Syrah we tasted. The winery grows its own Riesling as well. The rest of the grapes come from other Rogue Valley vineyards. As for the wine itself, winemaker Rene Eichmann works out of Bear Creek Estates in Cave Junction which is where Paschal ages its wines, too.
Yes, if it’s four o’clock, and you want to fit a winery visit in before your six pm dinner reservation and eight o’clock show, Paschal’s and its tremendous view are only 15 minutes from downtown Ashland. Yes, when July and August bear down, you will have no regrets about stocking Jill’s Rosé in the refrigerator. Veritas? No.