Find Paradise in Nysa’s Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills Paired with Duck Breasts, Seared Ahi Salad for Oregon Wine Month

Nysa and duck breasts with chard lasagna, salad

The Greek God of Wine Dionysus learned the art of the vine in a lush land full of fruit trees and vineyards called Nysa. Oregon’s Nysa seeks to recreate the Nysa of Dionysus. This earthly paradise of Nysa located at 600-720′ elevation in the Dundee Hills practices dry farming, avoids chemical pesticides, uses organic fertilizer made from manure, hay, and grape must, and densely spaces vines on 33 acres to concentrate flavor in their 3500-4500 cases per vintage. The remaining 11 acres consist of oak savannah and fields that allow animals to migrate. Grapes are sold to famed vintners such as Ken Wright, Harry Peterson Nedry, Kelley Fox, Josh Bergstrom, and Mike Etzel Jr.

While today Oregon has over 1400 vineyards, in 1990 when Michael Mega bought orchards that became Nysa, Oregon only had 330 vineyards. Nysa began making wines in 2004, with a focus on pinot noir which they age for a minimum of six years before release to achieve “a classic bloom of secondary flavors, balanced with delicate acidity, that only fine Pinot noir achieves.” Minimal intervention means no fining or filtering at bottling “to preserve the subtle complexity of Pinot noir.” The 2016 vintage of Pinot Noir and the 2019 vintage of Chardonnay are the current vintages and display the labels inspired by Greek Gods; the 2019 shows the new labels. 

Happy Oregon Wine Month! Happy National Wine Day! What’s in YOUR glass? 

Nysa wines with seared ahi tuna salad

Nysa Wines

Nysa Pinot

Menu for Nysa Pinot Noir 

  • Cheese Plate with olive bread: Mushroom Brie, Pate, Brie, Mole Salami, herbed nuts and dried olives
  • Green salad with raspberries, mole salami, herbed nuts and olives
  • Mushroom Herb Lasagna
  • Duck Breasts with elderberry sauce 
  • If you’re not a fan of duck breasts, try seared ahi tuna salad — great pairing with both wines as well as with the Nysa Chardonnay. The salad had raspberries, greens, apricot stilton, sesame seeds, with a drizzle of sesame oil and rice vinegar 

2016 Nysa Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, OR

2016 Nysa Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, OR

ABV: 13.5%
SRP: $75
Grapes: Pinot Noir
sample for my review

Appearance:  Light density, quite translucent, raspberry, garnet with a mauve rim

Aroma: Raspberry, roasted raspberry, loamy soil, barnyard, sage, chaparral, strawberry, cherry. 

Palate: Smooth texturally, cooked raspberry, macerated strawberry, bright acidity; more oak flavor than tannins. Chaparral, leather, tobacco: this is not a sipper, but more of a food friendly wine.  

Pairing: Not only is this mole salami fun and exciting, it really works with the wine. The spices in the salami is great and the wine loves it as well. The mushroom brie melts in your  mouth with the wine. The spices in the pate are enhanced by the wine and the spices in the wine are enhanced by the pate. Beautiful with the duck which livens the wine and brings out nice fresh bright fruit.  The elderberry sauce enhanced both the duck and the wine perfectly. I prefered this wine with the duck because the rich dish complemented the rich wine. 

2019 Nysa Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, OR

2019 Nysa Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, OR

ABV: 13%
SRP: $75 (expected; not released yet)
Grapes: Pinot Noir
sample for my review

Appearance:  Raspberry, garnet, watermelon, coral rim, translucent, light in body.

Aroma: Rose geranium, raspberry, brambles, dry brush, potpourri, carnation, baking spices, very floral.

Palate: Blood orange, orange oil, rose water, violet, iron richness, walnut skin, black walnut, very drying, like chalk, gypsum, fresh raspberry fruit on the finish.

Pairing: The mole salami is so much fun with the wine– the wine loves the spice of the salami and the salami loves the fruit in the wine. The olive bread is quite nice, then with a bit of mushroom it becomes amazing, great for both the wine and the cheese. The intensity of the olives in the olive bread brings out the fruit in the wine. Great with a bite of mushroom brie and pate. There is a lovely spicy quality between the duck and the wine. Both are amazing together. The fruit sauce, the duck and the wine are perfect partners. While the lasagne and the wine would not be your first choice for a meal with Pinot, the herbs make it work. Because of the raspberries and the elderberry sauce on the salad, it really pairs nicely with the wine. All that was really needed for this meal was the duck breast and the salad. With a nice cheese plate that is all the meal that anyone really needs. 





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