One of my favorite things about the Wine Bloggers Conference is that attendees have the opportunity to visit nearby wine country. This year's Wine Bloggers Conference was held in Portland, Ore., and being a finalist and winner of the Best New Wine Blog award during the conference gave me the privilege of being invited on some incredible pre- and post-conference tours. One of these tours was a tasting and lunch with sky high views at Youngberg Hill Vineyard Estate and Inn.

As soon as I spotted the Youngberg Hill Inn at the top of the vineyards, which immediately reminded me of childhood summers spent on Martha's Vineyard, I knew my fellow wine bloggers and I were in for a treat. Once our group was inside the Inn and had our first look at the view from the deck, the word 'breathtaking' was echoed throughout the room where we all stood. Owner Wayne Bailey got right down to business and started pouring samples of wine while sharing the Youngberg Hill story with us.

The first wine we tasted was the 2011 Aspen Pinot Gris. Named after his youngest of three daughters, the Aspen Pinot Gris opens up with gorgeous tropical fruit aromas of pineapple and grapefruit. On the palate, pineapple and stone fruit are rounded out with a solid acidic backbone that creates a long, smooth finish. Light-bodied, crisp and refreshing, this Pinot Gris is the perfect outdoor summer sipper.

The next wine in line was the 2011 Pinot Blanc. Since Youngberg Hill vineyards consists of three blocks of Pinot Noir and one block of Pinot Gris, the grapes for their Pinot Blanc are sourced from a vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA of Oregon - this is the only wine produced by Youngberg Hill where the fruit is sourced from another vineyard. I absolutely loved this Pinot Blanc. Aromas and flavors of crisp pears and lemon-lime zest immediately awaken the senses. Much like the Pinot Gris, this wine is crisp and refreshing, yet it's medium-bodied with a silky, velvety mouthfeel. A new bar has been set for Oregon Pinot Blancs, one of my favorite varietals, and it will be tough to find one as good as Youngberg Hill's.