OWP: Over the years of covering Oregon and Washington, you’ve tasted thousands of wines. Which AVA (from either state) has made the greatest impression on you?

Steiman: I see the same kind of distinctions among the sub-AVAs in the Willamette Valley as I do in the sub-appellations of the Côte d’Or. But for me, the most distinctive terroir in America is one of the newest AVAs: The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater. The wines from these vines, planted on dramatically stony soils, sing a whole chorus of unmistakable aromatics and flavors, and make some of the greatest wines in America — and, by the way, it’s on the Oregon side of the Walla Walla Valley AVA.

-Harvey Steiman, senior writer for Wine Spectator.

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