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R. Stuart and Co., Makers of Bigfire Wines


The label read: ‘But you are more than love, the fiery kiss, the heart of fire, more than the wine of life’. I saw the writer’s name, Pablo Neruda. Wow. OK, I’ll buy that idea.
bigfire wine, bigfire, bigfire winery

his piece of poetry was on the back of a bottle of Pinot noir I was given by a friend who really knows their stuff. The front label read ‘bigfire’ and the source was Oregon. I saw that it was from a winery called R. Stuart & Co., based in the heart of the Willamette Valley in that ever-changing never-changing little town, McMinnville. If you haven’t been there yet, just wait. ‘Mac’ as the locals know it, is a charming find in the beautiful Willamette Valley in Oregon - and that’s before you realize you are in one of the most exciting wine regions in the world.

We decided right then we had to talk a little further with these folks. Let’s face it; anyone eccentric enough to use poetry in lieu of grandiose wine-speak on their labels had our attention. Very cool. So, we went to the web, found their really stylish and interesting site (www.rstuartandco.com) and it was there I discovered one of the partners was an old friend from many moons ago. Small world. Where’s that phone?

It was a rollicking ‘Oh my god!! How ARE you?’ reconnection with my old friend Trish, now one of the partners in R. Stuart & Co., herself originally from Ireland, as the accent still confirmed. We talked about how the winery began in late 2001, how as a group they had been from day one determined to offer two very different styles of Pinot noir without sacrificing quality, ever. That explained having both the ‘bigfire’ and ‘R. Stuart’ labels.

bigfire wine, bigfire, bigfire winery

“Rob, Maria and I were all in absolute synch on that idea, Kevin. I mean you NEED a wine for Monday to Friday as well as the week-end, don’t you?! ‘bigfire’ Pinot gris and noir are the Monday to Friday bottles, the R. Stuart label wines the week-enders, so - no problems!” Pinots seven days a week - works for me.

Trish continued to tell us about the very exciting things happening in Oregon, including marvelous development in vineyards. Winemaker Rob Stuart works very closely with their growers, seeking out folks who tend their vineyards as carefully as he tends his wines. That fruit then comes in from all over the state to their McMinnville winery where Rob works his magic and makes beautifully crafted, drinkable wines. There is a definite ‘No chateau. So?’ vibe here! World-class wine without attitude or a bloated price-tag. This just keeps getting better.

Trish then told me about R. Stuart & Co.’s latest venture in McMinnville. “Yes, it’s gorgeous! We have a little Wine Bar open on 3rd St now; we’re thrilled with it. One of our favorite things is getting to know customers, so it’s the perfect venue for a chat and doing that, sure we love to talk! The Wine Bar also gives us a chance to show people which foods work with which wines – and that is fundamental to what we do here.” From the pictures and stories we’ve seen & heard already, sounds like it’s a very cool addition to life in the heart of McMinnville!

For information on anything to do with R. Stuart & Co., wines or words, visit their website here www.rstuartandco.com and - watch this space for more Oregon news throughout the year.

Now, what day is it today? Thursday. That means it’s a ‘bigfire’ day; yeah! Don’t you love it when a plan comes together?

Cheers all, till next time...

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