Ponzi Dolcetto, 12 Willamette. PS I’m in Oregon.

Welcome to my first blog post from the state of Oregon! But first, a disclaimer to those that didn’t know I had relocated…

In the past, I’ve always blogged about wines that were available for purchase at Cellar on Greene in Columbia, SC, because that was where I worked! (duh). Now that I’m here, I want to continue to write, but I don’t want to alarm anyone or confuse any local Columbia readers when I write about wines that may not be available at Cellar. I loved using the blog as a platform to expose people to wines available at Cellar, and that was the original intention of starting this blog. And it served me (and you, I hope) well. But as I’ve entered a new phase, I hope that if you’re a Columbian, you’ll continue to read if for no other reason that you’ve grown fond of my writing and you love to read about new and different wines. But in an effort not to create work for Ricky, don’t expect everything I write about here to be available at Cellar, or for that matter, in South Carolina at all. I hope to bridge the gap, and will do what I can to assist. So sit back and hopefully enjoy this new ride I’m on!

So- TONIGHT! Ponzi Dolcetto! Purchased at the Ponzi Wine Bar in Dundee, OR for $25. Conveniently located just down the road from me. How awesome is that.

Dolcetto in Willamettte? Who knew!

Dolcetto in Willamettte? Who knew!

So, Dolcetto? Who woulda thunk. I thought I was all cool because I knew Ponzi made an Arneis (amazing Italian white varietal), but now I get here and discover this Dolcetto! I tasted it at the Dundee Bistro a few nights ago, really enjoyed it, and knew I’d be picking up a bottle at some point. Here’s the skinny on Dolcetto: most is found in the Piedmont region of Northern Italy. Some was brought to Cali by expat Italians (go figure!). This particular vineyard was planted in 1992 in the Chehalem Mountains AVA of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Is there more Dolcetto to be found in Willamette Valley? Dunno! Yet, anyway. I’m only in the first week of discovery here.

deets, heard.


So this wine is a 2012 vintage, and since it’s my first time having it, I can’t compare it to other vintages. BUT- I have to say, it’s freakin’ slammin. Not sure if they submit for scores or not, but I could see this scoring a solid 90 or 91. From someone important. If that’s important to you. Why’s it so good? 1.) it’s varietally correct. It reminds me of several Dolcetto d’Alba’s I came into contact with in the SC market. Perhaps a slightly higher price point, but with the production level on this one and relative scarcity, that’s to be understood. So 2.) it’s delicious, of course! A beautiful deep, vibrant purple/magenta with nice medium density. A nose of mulberry, blackberry, licorice, briar patch, and a nice streak of herbs- mint, maybe a touch of rosemary. With a sturdy tannic finish, I find this to be a perfect sipper. What would marry nicely with it? Braised lamb? Something wintery? Yes, I think so. This wine is robust, yet not in-your-face. Certainly best drunk within a few years of bottling, in my opinion. I’m into it.

Sadly, I’m almost 100% certain this wine is not available in SC. That just means you’re gonna have to get your tail to Oregon and visit the winery.

So, how am I? Is anyone curious? Now that I’ve had a glass of wine, I’ll share. Granted, it’s been less than a week, but it’s been a little up n’ down. Highs and lows. Highs? Realizing I can go wine tasting any time I want. Amazing scenery. Great people. Did I mention amazing scenery??


Sunset at Belle Pente yesterday.

Sunset from my house tonight.

Sunset from my house tonight.

So, lows? Not having a job. YET, anyway. I do have leads, and I remain optimistic, but I pretty much hate not being employed. I like to work. It’s hard to feel like I’m getting in the groove when I don’t have any real “purpose” on a day to day or even hourly basis. But writing seems to make me feel more like “me”, so if anything else, that is a motivator to keep writing. Other lows? I do miss y’all. My Columbia peeps. I miss my constant slew of work-related texts. I miss Ricky Mollohan’s ass. I really do. It’s strange to not be able to talk to him about Homeland and The Blacklist spur of the moment. I hate that while I was driving here, Vincent Sheheen did NOT become the governor. I truly hate that for the state of South Carolina. I feel far away, and that’s a little hard to swallow. But at other moments, it feels amazing to be far away.

But I’m good. I got this.

Now go drink some wine! Cheers, y’all.


10 thoughts on “Ponzi Dolcetto, 12 Willamette. PS I’m in Oregon.

  1. Ricky Mollohan misses your “ass “more!! But he sure is proud of ya!! Hang in there and you’ll be kicking ass n taking names soon.
    P.s.–Max , JJ, Uma n Reggie miss you too!!!

  2. Glad to hear you made it all right. I have been going to Willmette since 1990. I have always been impressed by their ability to produce wines wines which match the conditions. As the average temps have gone up their ability to grow grapes which are traditionally from the Piedmont is logical. If there is anything we can do for you let me know. Hope to see you next year, Bert and Dick

  3. Hi Kaitlin! I met you at COG awhile back, told you how much I enjoyed your writing and encouraged you to stick with it in our few conversations. Glad you listened. ☺ I’m really impressed to learn in your latest blog that you’ve picked up stakes and moved to Oregon. It takes tremendous courage to do that.

    I mentioned to you in August at COG that I’d visited Napa in July and met a terrific lady, Grace Hoffman, at Freemark Abbey winery. She told me that she was a wine blogger in Ohio and just decided one day to pack up her stuff, drive to California and find a job. She did…and now she’s a tasting associate – and a damned fine one! – at Freemark Abbey. Very knowledgeable about the region, FA wines and wines/grapes in general.

    You may recall my telling you that I mentioned your blog to her and she told me she’d read and enjoyed it. I seem to remember you saying that you knew who she is/was, too. Anyway, reading your latest blog, and knowing that you’re out there on the left coast now, I thought I’d remind you of all that and suggest maybe that you reach out to Grace to say “hi,” talk shop, fish for job leads, etc. Yes, yes…I know: it’s CALIFORNIA, not Oregon, but my sense was that Grace knew A LOT of peeps on that side of the country. Never hurts to make another connection. Who knows what might work out?

    Grace Hoffman, CSW
    Tasting Room Associate
    3022 St. Helena, CA 94574

    Anyway, good luck and much success out there. Thanks for remembering us in God’s Country (aka S.C.) and keep blogging!

    Lindsey Smith

    • Thanks Lindsey! I actually did send her a message after meeting you. Maybe I’ll reach out again now that I’m here. I do enjoy her tweets. Thanks again for your encouragement!

  4. Hi Wine Snob!! Glad you made it to Oregon. The photos are beautiful. Hope you find a job soon. We miss you!! Good luck!! BTW: My email address has changed. Please send future blog posts to: dr@scfullers.us Thanks.


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