The Story Behind The Riesling Radler

underwood riesling radler ingredients

At Union Wine Company, we’re fond of breaking patterns. We’re not afraid to mix our wine with other quality ingredients to bring new wine drinking experiences to life. Enter Underwood wine coolers. Our wine coolers are a combination of innovation, art and craft, paired with our commitment to stay local and support the artisans of Oregon. First up: meet the Underwood Riesling Radler.

More than a year ago our fearless leader, Ryan Harms (who’s always pushing the boundaries) asked our wine production team a question that started it all: what if we could make something along the lines of a Radler*, but with wine? 24 hours later, a trial blend was in front of him and the Riesling Radler was born.

*For those that aren’t familiar with what a Radler is: simply put, it’s a traditional German beverage that is half beer, half fruit soda.

goschie farms

Let’s rewind a little. Long before our Radler came to be, we partnered with Goschie Farms, nestled within the hills of the scenic Willamette Valley, to grow Pinot Gris grapes. We pride ourselves in developing and maintaining strong relationships with our growers, and Goschie Farms has been a staple in our winemaking process for over 4 years. More so, they have been a fixture in the Oregon hop farming community for 130 years. So, when we started playing with the idea of a Riesling Radler, partnering with them was a no-brainer.

hops at goschie farms

Goschie Farms is currently managed by fourth generation farmer Gayle Goschie along with her brothers Gordon and Glenn. In 2009, Gayle became the first woman to be awarded the International Order of the Hop, which is the highest honor in the hop community. Rumor has it that Gayle has been running forklifts since before she could walk, and on any given day you’re likely to find her in rubber boots working outside in the crop fields. Gayle strongly believes in the responsibility to conserve and improve our lands, not only as good business sense, but as critical to building future farm leaders.

gayle goschie

Sustainability continues to take a front seat in Goschie Farm’s daily operations. They are the first ever hops grower to be certified as Salmon-Safe, recognized for their conservation practices that protect water quality and native salmon. They also use solar power to operate their facility and have achieved their LIVE certification for sustainability.

goschie hops

Turning back to our Riesling Radler, under Gayle’s leadership and in partnership with our winemaking team, Goschie Farms helped us identify hop varieties that would achieve the flavors and characteristics we were looking for. The final formula combines Riesling wine, Crystal and Cascade hops and grapefruit juice. The goal was to pull some of the flavors from beer, while still keeping the Radler wine-based. The result is a session-able, 3% ABV wine cooler that bridges the gap between approachable wine and craft beer.

We couldn’t be prouder to work with Goschie Farms to put the hop in our Riesling Radler. Stay tuned to see what’s next…

“It’s far better to be challenged by the work than to be overwhelmed, and we all know how overwhelming it can be because farming is hard work. But it’s boots on the ground, hands in the dirt, good honest work.”

– Gayle Goschie

hop farm gayle goschie

Photography by David L. Reamer

Grilled Pizza Cook-off 2.0

There is a tradition at Union Wine Company that involves two tenacious competitors and a heck of a lot of dough. It rolls around every 2-3 years, similar to snowfall in Portland, and like snow after a month of solid rain, it is warmly welcomed by all.

We’re talking about the (Sometimes) Bi-annual Grilled Pizza Cook-Off. The humble but hardy contestants include Ryan Harms, our owner, and JP Caldcleugh, our winemaker. JP took the cake in the last cook-off, and after a couple years of regrouping, Ryan was ready for a comeback.*

Each contender put a lot of heart into their homemade dishes. Ryan devised a signature sauce with hand torn tomatoes that kept us coming back for slice…after slice…after slice. JP concocted a prosciutto pie that featured pizza’s best friend: basil, fresh from the Amity Vineyards garden.

As per tradition, the entire Union team gathered in the winery parking lot to do the real hard work – judging the pizzas. Everyone loves a good comeback story, and in true Hollywood fashion this year’s pizza crowning went to Ryan.

However, with full bellies and faces adorned in post-pizza glow, it was agreed that we all truly won the grilled pizza cook-off.

*Or, our Director of Finance Eric was just in the mood for pizza.

 

Photography by David L. Reamer

Rosé Iced Tea

Grab that rocking chair. This twist on a summertime staple will quickly become your cocktail of choice for those front porch happy hours.

Rosé Iced Tea

2 bottles Underwood Rosé (or 4 cans)

1 quart-size sachet Smith Teamaker Hibiscus Iced Tea

5.25 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice

2.75 oz simple syrup

Steep 1 quart size sachet of tea in 2 bottles of Rosé for an hour, no longer than two hours. Remove sachet, add simple syrup and lemon juice to wine and stir. Serve over ice with a lemon twist. Makes around ten 5 oz drinks.

Photography by David L. Reamer

Rosé Sangria

With these hot temperatures hitting the country, Rosé Season is in full swing. Stay cool with our take on sangria using Underwood Rosé.

Rosé Sangria

Serves two

1 Can Underwood Rosé

1/2 oz lime juice

1/3 C grapefruit juice

2/3 C grenadine

ice

 

Mix all ingredients. Garnish with small slices of pink grapefruit. Add ice and enjoy.

Choose your own adventure…

To make it sweeter, top each glass with ginger ale
To make it bubbly, top each glass with sparkling water
To pack an extra punch, add 3 oz of white rum to the mix

Photography by David Reamer

How to Make Wine Can Chicken

How to Make Wine Can Chicken

It’s no secret that at Union Wine Company, we’re proponents of thinking outside the box. Or in this case, outside of coq au vin.

This Memorial Day Weekend, we brought a new take on our Underwood cans to life. At Austin’s famed Hot Luck Fest, we partnered with Chef Doug Adams (his new restaurant Bullard PDX will open in the new Woodlark Hotel this fall) to bring our vision of Wine Can Chicken to life. Most people have heard, and some have tried, the infamous BBQ dish “Beer Can Chicken,” but no one had experienced what true wine can chicken could be – until this weekend.

Amidst 100 degree heat, we paired 1,000 pounds of chicken with 300 cans of Underwood Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris to create the ultimate show stopper.

Want to recreate the dish at home? Chef Doug Adams shares his recipe below.

Ingredients:

For Rub:

  • 2 Guajillo chiles
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp Orange juice
  • 2 tbsp Lime juice
  • 1 tbsp Fish sauce

Directions:

  1. Remove giblets from chicken; discard.
  2. Rinse chicken inside and out; pat dry.
  3. In a small sauce pan, toast chiles on high heat till fragrant. About 2o seconds a side.
  4. Put the chiles and garlic in pot with just enough water to submerge the chiles. Simmer for 5 minutes and let stand until chiles are soft.
  5. Place the chiles and garlic in a processor with water and a pinch of salt; process smooth. mix with citrus and fish sauce. Rub marinade all over the chicken.
  6. Prepare barbecue grill and preheat for indirect-heat cooking.
  7. Carefully lower chicken over the wine can until can is inside body cavity. Pull legs forward so chicken stands upright on can.
  8. Carefully set chicken and can, in this upright position, on center of grill (not over direct heat); cover charcoal grill and open vents; close lid on gas grill.
  9. Cook until temperature reaches 160*, about 1 hour.
  10. Using oven mitts, carefully remove chicken with can from grill, keeping it upright.
  11. Let chicken stand on can for 15 minutes, then, holding a towel around the can to steady it and protect your hands, with a large carving fork, carefully remove chicken from can to a carving platter or carving board.
  12. Carve chicken and serve, adding salt and pepper to taste.
  13. Garnish with spicy pickles or avocado salsa.