Washington State Reds Vintage Chart

Washington State Reds    
2009 88 D/H
2008 89 D/H

Wine Charities: For the Love of Wine

Since grade school we’ve all heard the fatigued proverb, “It’s better to give than to receive.” Most of us wouldn’t argue with that, at least not publicly. Privately however, well, who doesn’t want free stuff? In truth, the wine industry is a magnanimous group, routinely called upon to provide free juice for charity auctions, public and private tastings, festivals and most anyplace where wine is poured and people want to imbibe at little or no cost. These three west coast wineries showcase the dedication of making wine, making changes, one bottle, and one person at a time.

Merlot vs Syrah: Which Varietal Blooms Brightest in Washington?

Say “Oregon” and Pinot Noir comes to mind. Argentina? Malbec. And who can say “Shiraz” without thinking of Australia? But what grape will Washington wine country claim as it’s own as it expands in production and popularity? There are so many red treasures in this state, sometimes it is hard to say. But after my luscious Saturday tasting, I’m thinking Syrah and Merlot may duke it out for the prize.

Washington Barbera: Lost Mountain Winery Delivers a Food Pairing Success

What comes to mind when you think of Italian wine? Barolo, Sangiovese, Asti Spumante, or the popular rule-breaking Super Tuscans? I normally do. But a few weeks ago, I was re-introduced to Barbera in, of all places a winery on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State – hundreds of miles away from grape growing territory.

I was researching Mt. Townsend Creamery, an artisanal cheese making company in Port Townsend. Their three cheeses have become hugely successful in a short time

Top Tips for Wine Festivals

We recently drank our way through Woodinville Passport 2008, in the ever-burgeoning Woodinville wine region just outside of Seattle, Washington. Here, we experienced wine tasting in warehouse office parks – and never was a more true and honest passion for wine represented without all the fancy mahogany tasting bars, and retail swag you find in other wineries. With a little help from some Woodinville winemakers, I share with you my top tips for how to attack a wine tasting festival.

Riesling: Washington’s Great White Wine

I’ve always loved Riesling in its myriad forms. Ranging from dry to very sweet, this most versatile grape is a classic. Usually low in alcohol, with moderate to high acid, and tones of green apple, citrus, apricot, white flowers and minerals, this wine goes with just about anything but red meat.

My introduction to Riesling came at a B&B in the south of England.

Viognier for Spring

I realized that I was in a red wine rut a few years ago and made a practice to try unfamiliar white wines at tastings. I quickly discovered Viognier, a medium bodied white wine, perfumed with apricots, peaches and white flowers. This stuff is amazing - delicate, yet heady; I can sit for hours just enjoying the aroma. The taste is a revelation – the silky smooth texture hits first, then the fruit and flowers explode. It’s quite wonderful.

Cabernet Sauvignon – Old Vines in Washington State

Zillah, Washington State, 1994. I was completely disoriented. It was hot. I was standing in a dry, semi – desert terrain, but looking west, I saw glacier capped Mt. Rainier.

The roads weren’t paved, the wineries badly marked. Tasting rooms consisted of folding tables in the corners of barrel rooms, or in the family rec room with 1970’s shag carpeting. Often, I had to ring an outdoor bell to bring someone in from the fields to pour tastes.

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