Seattle Wine Blog

This blog is dedicated to commentary on all aspects of wine, especially short entries to help you find the best wines without the usual hype and spin. These are my frank, independent opinions, usually based on tasting wine at a public event, off the shelf or at the winery. "All creative acts must arise out of a specific soil and flicker with a spirit of place" -D.H. Lawrence

Monday, April 10, 2006

Taste Washington - Room D continued

Okay, so where was I? Room D - hmm, still in the Q to Zs. Oh, yes, two-buck-chuck, or rather Post and Pine Chardonnay. Winemaker Mark Wysling was in Mexico, but his able deputy from Yakima Cellars poured me the 2002 Red Willow Sangiovese which may be the best sangio in the state. Mark definitely has a way with that grape and the price is a phenomenal $16. Mark also makes wine for Kana Winery. Their Tempranillo is outstanding. Next door, we tasted a beautiful 2004 Barbera from Yellow Hawk (not Yellowtail, Mate), which was true to type and comparable to the best Barberas from California's Sierra Foothills.

We made the sacrifice of bypassing Woodward Canyon where winemaker Rick Small was answering a question about acid and ageing wine. Yes, the more acid, the lower the ph, the better the wine will age, but if it has too much acid what will it taste like and will the fruit last as long as the acid. Answer: No, I can vouch for that with many fruitless older Burgundies I've tasted in recent years.

On to Walla Walla Vintners- wow, wonderful wines at reasonable prices. The 2004 Sangiovese was good at $22, but the 2004 Columbia Valley Cab Franc and the 2004 Merlot were great at $25 and $28, respectively. The Wind Rivers Cellars Wines were good, but we had to skip Wilridge which makes very good wines. Waters is a new Walla Walla winery but we skipped them, too.

We stopped at Two Mountain Winery (good Syrah), skipped Terra Blanca (great wine),and Three Rivers (check out their three vineyard designated Syrahs sometime), and went on to the Ss. Syzygy's Cab was quite beautiful, smooth and linear (about $30) and their 2004 Red, a blend of Cab, Syrah, Merlot and Malbec is a good buy at $20. You can also buy orange imprinted tea shirts and thongs at Syzygy. Summer is coming! Speaking of summer, Syncline had an exceptionally complex 2005 Rose made from Grenache, Mourvedre, Cinsault, and Syrah. Their 2004 Milbrandt Syrah was smooth and a good value at $22.

Reininger has a new second label called "Helix" and the wines are really good. The 2004 Aspera is fruity, easy to drink, feels smooth and cool in your mouth. It is made from the unusual combination of 75% Chardonnay and 25% Viognier. The 2003 Helix Merlot has a bit of Cab Franc and Cab Sauv in it. It has great dark cherry flavors and more tannin than you would expect in the price range ( about $20?). The Helix Pomatia is the usual Washington State Bordeaux-style blend which includes 16% Syrah. It is round, fruity and easy to drink. Ah, now, some of my favorites - the mainstream Reiniger wines- 2002 Merlot, 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon, and 2003 Syrah. I always love the Merlot, but this time the Cab seemed fruitier than the Merlot which perhaps need a few years of bottle age. Phwew, finished room D. Time for a break. How about some smoked seafood and fish from Ray's Boathouse.


  • At 11:51 AM, Anonymous Kelsey said…

    Gene,Thanks for the plug on the thongs!!

  • At 12:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    It's to bad you missed Water Winery - my wife and I recently tried their 2004 Interlude blend and found it to be a wonderful wine!

  • At 10:53 AM, Blogger SeattleWineBlog said…

    Anon, thanks for the tip on Water Winery's 2004 Interlude. I'll be sure to check it out.


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