Western Whites

The Butcher's Block specializes in summer refreshment

Oregon's cool, rainy hills have made it a hot spot for New World Pinot Noir production. But there's a lighter side to the wine region, which is now turning out French-style whites that compete with the Old World's best bottles.

At The Butcher's Block market and wine store in Alexandria, wine director Leah Dedmon loves the state's lighter wines for pairing with summer foods or sipping outside. She favors lesser-known (and more affordable) Oregon producers, and stocks bottles at The Butcher's Block as well as on the lists at the shop's adjacent sister restaurants, Brabo and Tasting Room.

Here are three of her favorite finds from The Butcher's Block (listed at retail prices):

2009 Foris Vineyards Muscat Frissante ($16) This floral, effervescent Rogue Valley wine is made in the same style as Moscato d'Asti. The stone-fruit flavors make it good with dessert, but it's crisp enough to sip before dinner or on the patio.

2009 Evesham Wood Vin D'Une Nuit Rosé ($17) Instead of creating rosé with Pinot Noir, this tiny winery uses Tempranillo for a pale, fruity pink wine whose peppery finish is just right with summer salads.

2009 Roots Melon de Bourgogne ($21.50) The Melon de Bourgogne varietal–used in Muscadet–is rarely grown outside France. This austere wine from Yamhill-Carlton has a mineral quality that works with spicy foods and especially well with oysters.