This large barrel serves as a greeting for visitors to Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery near Oliver, British Columbia. (Abra Bennett/Great Northwest Wine)

This large barrel serves as a greeting for visitors to Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery near Oliver, British Columbia. (Abra Bennett/Great Northwest Wine)

Gehringer brothers rank among the Northwest’s best producers

With 78 Platinum Awards, Walter and Gordon Gehringer’s winery is “The King of the Platinum.”

It could be argued that a family-owned winery in the interior of British Columbia is the finest producer in the entire Pacific Northwest.

This pronouncement is based primarily on the results each year of Wine Press Northwest magazine’s annual Platinum Judging, its annual best-of-the-best competition. To be eligible, a wine must have been awarded a gold medal in any of about 50 worldwide judgings tracked by the periodical owned by the Tri-City Herald.

In the 19-year history of the judging, Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery has won an astonishing 78 Platinums. No producer in Washington, Oregon, Idaho or British Columbia has amassed as many, making Walter and Gordon Gehringer’s winery “The King of the Platinum.”

Many of these are bargains, and while the wines are not available in the United States, it is worth the effort to visit the winery along the Golden Mile Bench south of Oliver, B.C., just a few minutes north of Oroville.

All of these wines won Platinum or better during the judging staged during October in Richland. They are available from the winery and can be found through some retailers in the province. And the prices listed are in Canadian dollars.

Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery 2017 Classic Riesling, Okanagan Valley, $13.29: The King of the Platinum nearly produced the top wine of the judging with this quintessential Pacific Northwest example of riesling, perhaps the most decorated wine of the judging. It broadcasts a classic riesling aroma of river rock and stone fruit. It’s glorious on the palate with flavors of fresh summer peaches, hints of jasmine, crushed herbs and a fascinating thread of minerality. Zesty and precise, there’s a kick of lime zest on the forever finish.

Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery 2017 Old Vines Auxerrois, Okanagan Valley, $14.29: Few in North America work with this early-ripening white grape that’s most popular in Alsace. It can be argued that no one in the New World does it as well as the Gehringer brothers. It’s delightfully floral on the nose with a suggestion of tropical fruit peeking through. Beautifying the palate are delicate layers of crisp aurora golden gala apples, herbal tea, dried pineapple, lemon verbena and white peach. Lovely acidity keeps it bright and dynamic through the invigorating finish.

Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery 2017 Private Reserve Dry Riesling, Okanagan Valley, $13.29: This marks the fourth straight vintage for Walter and Gordon Gehringer to earn at least a Platinum with this style of riesling, which carries less than 1 percent residual sugar. An alluring stone fruit aroma engages the senses. Peach and nectarine fruit mingle with sweet herbs, minerality and a touch of lemon-lime exhilarating the palate. Crisp acidity offers perfect balance, and the scintillating finish persists long after the last sip.

Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery 2017 Gewürztraminer/Schönburger, Golden Mile Bench, $15: These brothers plug and play when it comes to this consistently successful 50/50 blend of gewurztraminer and schonburger. The latter is a cross of pinot noir with muscat hamburg and was developed at the Geisenheim Institute in then-West Germany while Walter Gehringer studied winemaking there. Lychee and passionfruit, lemon curd and fresh-chopped herbs unwind in this lightly off-dry white capped by a jovial kick of acidity. Wines such as this can be transformative.

Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery 2017 Dry Rock Unoaked Chardonnay, Golden Mile Bench, $14: Here is the third time in four vintages that this historic property north of Osoyoos Lake has earned at least a Platinum for its estate unoaked chardonnay program. Lemon-lime, passionfruit and a squirt of gooseberry form a complex nose. Inside, there’s gorgeous acidity as minerality, light grapefruit flavors and lime combine for a remarkable mouthfeel.

Andy Perdue and Eric Degerman operate Great Northwest Wine, an award-winning media company. Learn more about wine at

Talk to us

More in Life

Amid pandemic, seniors have second thoughts on where to live

Some decide against communal living in retirement communities, and commit to staying in their own homes as long as possible.

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake, photographed Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020. (Hillary Levin/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS)
These 4 recipes will prevent the heartbreak of blah desserts

Each of them is decadent and well worth the calories, and they’ll all become your new favorites.

Snohomish Historical Preservation Commission member Fred Cruger with his dog, Duffy, in Arlington along one of the history walk sections at Centennial Trail. The event will be up through September. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Discover local history as you walk the Centennial Trail

Take a smartphone quiz as you stroll the trail. If you answer every question correctly, you’ll win a prize.

A man walks past a free flu shot advertisement outside of a drugstore on August 19, 2020 in New York. (Photo by BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP via Getty Images/TNS)
Q&A: Who should get the flu vaccine, and when?

Flu shots won’t prevent COVID-19, but it’s still important for everybody to be vaccinated, doctors say.

How to find a healthy ‘normal’ during life’s transitions

Avoiding gaps in self-care requires planning and thoughtfulness. Here are some tips from a doctor.

Rosemary Fish Fillets with Lemon Garlic Pasta. (Linda Gassenheimer/TNS)
Lemon, garlic sauce, rosemary make flavorful fish dish

This recipe calls for mahi-mahi, but any type of firm white fish will work — snapper, tilapia or cod.

A course of traffic-cone slaloms is one way to help teens improve their driving skills. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Her teen is putting pedal to the metal for accident avoidance

She signed the new driver up for an advanced collision avoidance class taught by Defensive Driving School.

Seattle filmmaker ‘would have been honored’ by being at Emmys

Lynn Shelton, who died in May, was nominated for directing and producing Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere.”

Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, now a symbol of peace and reunification. (Rick Steves’ Europe)
Rick Steves: Today’s Berlin is freedom’s victory dance

Checkpoint Charlie is now a capitalist sideshow. You’ll be sold fake bits of the wall, WWII gas masks and DDR medals.

Most Read