wineries of hood river

Mt. Hood Winery Offers Summit Club Membership and Delivery

Mt. Hood Winery

Mt. Hood over the vineyard at Mt. Hood Winery in Oregon

One of the perks of making a good living selling Sacramento real estate is the relative affordability of fine wines, and the only thing that tops that is having the wine delivered. The drawback is you have to be home to sign for it, and you need to be over 21, both of which I can arrange since I don’t get carded anymore. Getting carded stopped after I stopped going to First Avenue and Fifth Street Entry in Minneapolis and we moved to Sacramento. Those are nightclubs that card everybody, even some of us who were over 45 at the time. Nobody in California cards a woman over 60.

That’s a sure sign you’re over the hill, so to speak. Like, maybe you shouldn’t trust anybody under 60.

mt hood winery

Elizabeth Weintraub tasting 2014 Dry Riesling at Mt. Hood Winery.

I’ve been ordering wine from the Mt. Hood Winery in Oregon, ever since our vacation at Hood River last summer while visiting the Columbia River Gorge and the Oregon Coast. Out of the many wineries my husband and I have visited, including those in Napa and Sonoma, I am really drawn to the Mt. Hood wines. It’s too bad that the 2014 Malbec Dry Rosé is all gone for this year, but there is still time to enjoy the 2014 Dry Riesling, which is almost a sparkling wine, the Pinot Gris 2014 and the 2013 Grenache. The wines are very affordable at $16 a bottle, after the discount as a Summit Club member, just in case you were wondering.

The Summit Club membership is a special deal with no joining fee. Mt. Hood Winery will ship to Summit Club members 4 bottles, three times a year, for $65 to $95 per shipment, not including shipping charges. If you find a winery you love, almost all of them offer this option. It’s a good way to try new wines.

If you call the winery on Friday, they will ship your order on Monday, and in Sacramento you will get it on Wednesday. The number is 541.386.8333. When you’re a busy Sacramento Realtor with no time to shop, asking Mt. Hood Winery to ship your order works out pretty well.

Photo: Mt. Hood Winery and Mt. Hood by Elizabeth Weintraub

A Visit to Hood River, Oregon, Involves Pubs and Wineries

View of Mt. Hood and vineyards from Mt. Hood Winery in Oregon

While strolling along the dock on the Columbia River in Stevenson, Washington, I met a young couple from Atlanta. The wife mentioned they chose this area of the country for vacation because they are doing a “pub crawl.” I thought about their quest for a moment and then offered my own personal reflections, which are all based on the assumption that if I tried to do it, I probably wouldn’t get very far.

Craft beer is trendy-hot in Sacramento right now, and craft beer joints are popping up all over, especially in Midtown. Everybody is an artisan. I think I should call myself an artisan real estate agent. If you create something with your own two hands, become obsessed by tiny details and use only the finest ingredients, that makes one an artisan; especially when you’re never satisfied with the finished product and continue to tweak and improve. In the old days, you’d probably go into a straight jacket but today you’re an artisan.

In Washington and Oregon, you’ll find craft beer joints all over, doesn’t matter where you are, small town, large town, they are there. They don’t call them beer joints, though or even what they truly are, which is a bar, because that sounds so crass, so pounding-the-table-like-a-leering-caveman at Hooters. They call them pubs. Because it sounds so British and upper-crusty-like. Just what the Northwest needs.

columbia river gorge

The train runs along the Columbia River near Mitchell Point in Washington

You’ll also find pot houses in Washington, run by the government, where you can buy pre-rolled joints with filters on the tips that come individually packaged in a plastic tube so if you’re planning to leave it outside somewhere for somebody else to find because you can’t possibly smoke the entire thing and walk at the same time, it won’t get wet. Not that I would know anything about that.

hood river oregon

Hood River, Oregon, from the steps of Big Horse Brew Pub

We began bouncing on the sidewalks of Hood River searching for a lunch spot. Initially, I had my heart set on a Sunday brunch at the Columbia Gorge Hotel, which was built in 1921, a beautiful old hotel with many of its original architectural details intact situated on a cliff over the Columbia River. There is also a waterfall right there on the property, and you can stand on top of it and look down, watching the water roar over the rocks and drop below. But we missed brunch by 15 minutes. So, we went downtown Hood River.

columbia river gorge

Bonneville dam from the Washington side of the Columbia River

It was hot. More than 100 degrees. Little shade regardless of which side of the street you walked on. Lots of little shops, many businesses were closed, and a bunch of cafes featuring sandwiches. After circling a 6-block area, we decided to try up the hill, a restaurant perched at the top, The Big Horse Brew Pub. By this time, we had scorched ourselves in the sun, my iPad was almost too hot to touch to play Ingress, and we pulled our tired selves up the hill and then up another 3 sets of stairs to the restaurant.

It will be a 30-minute wait, the guy at the seating sign predicted. Well, I was too tired and sticky hot to go anywhere else. I imagine my husband was ready to sit down, too. We grabbed at spot at the bar and ordered a couple of drafts while we enjoyed the tremendous view of the town of Hood River below and made fun of the signs warning guys who had too much to drink what not to do. Like, don’t climb the ladder to the loft, which seems decorative anyway.

mt hood winery

Sacramento Realtor Elizabeth Weintraub visits the Mt Hood Winery in Oregon

We considered renting paddleboards at the beach, but just the thought of the hot sun beating down on us, even though we could feel the cold water rolling over our bare feet, well, it just didn’t seem like a lot of fun. It was also a bit windy for paddelboarding. Nope, visiting the Mt. Hood Winery, on the other hand, seemed like it offered more air conditioning and peace and quiet. Of course, we didn’t leave there without ordering a future shipment. I highly recommend the 2013 Estate Dry Reisling or the 2012 Grenache for a nice summer wine.

Which is why we never made it to a hiking spot. We were on our way to at least visit the trailhead when we got sidetracked by the Mt. Hood Winery. Hiking or wine tasting? Over 100 degrees outside. Easy choice.

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