High Tech Meets High Taste August 15th at Classic Wineseller's Virtual Wine Dinner

By Kay Stegall Miller | Aug 04, 2013
Source: Willamette Valley Vineyards Sample wines from Willamette Valley Vineyards, Turner, Oregon, on August 15 at the Classic Wineseller.

Waynesville, NC - The Classic Wineseller, 20 Church Street, Waynesville, will host a Virtual Wine Dinner with Willamette Valley Vineyards of Turner, Oregon on Thursday, August 15, 2013 at 7:00pm.

Joining the dinner via Skype are special, virtual guests Willamette Valley Vineyards Winemaker Don Crank, III, and Willamette Valley Vineyards Ambassador, Karen Gardner.

The dinner is $50++ per person and consists of five courses perfectly paired with the elegant wines of Willamette Valley Vineyards. For reservations call the Classic Wineseller at 828.452.6000 or email atinfo@classicwineseller.com.

Don Crank, III was promoted to Willamette Valley Vineyards winemaker in late 2006 and served alongside head winemaker, Forrest Klaffke until Klaffke's death in late 2011.

Crank was born July 4, 1976 in St. Louis, Missouri. He was educated at Purdue University where he received a degree in biochemistry with an emphasis in food science. Initially, Crank used his degree working in the family soy business, even writing a few soy milk patents. However, a professor at Purdue, who taught wine appreciation classes, inspired him to learn more about winemaking. A trip to France, where he fell in love with the local Burgundian grape, convinced him to focus on Pinot Noir. Soon after, Crank ventured west to Oregon with the hopes of becoming a world-class winemaker. Initially, he earned winemaking skills through harvest work at Montinore Estate and Panther Creek. Meanwhile, he worked full-time as head brewer at Golden Valley Brewing, in McMinnville, Oregon.

In late 2002, Crank landed his first full-time job in the Oregon wine industry, serving as a cellar hand for Willamette Valley Vineyards. It wasn't long before his talents and ambitions were recognized by winemaker, Forrest Klaffke. Don Crank proved to be an invaluable asset and quickly rose to the ranks of cellar master, then assistant winemaker. Crank, along with assistant winemaker, Daniel Shepherd, carefully tend, from field to bottle, the best Pinot Noir Mother Nature will allow.

Willamette Valley Vineyards’ founder and winegrower, Jim Bernau purchased the Estate site in 1983 and cleared away the old pioneer plum orchard hidden in scotch broom and blackberry vines. He planted Pinot Noir (Pommard and Wadenswil clones), Chardonnay (Dijon and Espiguette) and Pinot Gris. In 1989, after completing numerous classes at UC Davis and attending seminars from the US to France, Bernau’s viticultural skills were finely sharpened so that he was ready to build his dream—a world class winery in the Willamette Valley—and make cool-climate varietals, especially Pinot Noir, in sufficient quantities to be served and sold in the best restaurants and bottle shops in the world.

The Classic Wineseller, Waynesville’s premiere retail wine and craft beer shop, houses a 50-seat restaurant and intimate live music venue. Enjoy delicious small plate fare while listening to  local, regional, or national talent on Friday and Saturday nights. For more information about wine and beer tastings/dinners, music events, and our special jazz and dinner combos, visit www.classicwineseller.com, or call 828-452-6000.

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