Seattle is only a 3 hour drive from Vancouver. Many Canadians go down for soccer or NFL football games at Century Link Field. But you can also go down for wine tasting. Every year around the first week in April is Taste Washington, held at Century Link Field. Taste Washington brings together over 225 wineries, 70 restaurants and 60 culinary exhibitors from across the region. I attended the Grand Tasting They also have Red & White Party, Taste Washington on the Farm, The New Vintage, and Educational Seminars. I really enjoy tasting Washington State wines, and in addition trying on the fly pairings with the restaurant tables in the big tasting room. Approximately every 3rd table for the Grand Tasting is a restaurant. Food and wine are naturally made for each other, so why not put them together at a tasting?
Below are a few of my favourite white Washington State wines from the Grand Tasting. You may be able to find some of these wines in private BC wine shops, and if you are visiting Seattle, at some of the downtown restaurants or a wine store like Total Wine & Spirits.
My Favourite White Washington Wines
aMaurice Cellars Viognier, Columbia Valley, 2015 (US$28) – Light orange aromas in the glass. Dry, medium plus body and acidity. Orange and stone fruit flavours on the palate, with a spicy finish. Very tasty. Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Array Cellars Celilo Vineyard Chardonnay, Columbia Gorge, 2012 (US$32) – Light pear and tropical fruit on the nose. Fuller bodied with a mineral streak. Buttery with topical fruit and nutmeg on the palate. Nice. Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Cinq Cellars Dry Riesling, Columbia Valley, 2014 (US$16) – Flint and apple on the nose. Dry, medium body with medium plus acidity. Apples, some stoniness and a hint of honey in the mouth. Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Cote Bonneville Estate Riesling, Yakima Valley, 2015 (US$22) – Sweet orange and vanilla spice nose. Medium sweetness, round with medium acidity and orange flavours. Rating: 4.5/5 stars
DeLILLE Cellars Chaleur Estate Blanc White Bordeaux Blend, Columbia Valley, 2014 (US$38) – A very nice nose with toasty tropical fruit. Medium plus body, round and a very silky mouth feel. Tropical fruit and spice on the palate. Very good quality . Rating: 4.5/5 stars.
Milbrandt Vineyards Wahluke Slope Viognier, 2014 (US$22) – Very nice vanilla spiced pear nose. Medium bod,round, dry. Spices, pears and tropical fruit. A perfect sip. Rating: 5/5 stars
Naches Heights Vineyard Riesling 2014 (US$13.99) – Medium intensity nose with oranges and flowers on the nose Medium plus body, round and off-dry. Apples with a hint of petrol. Nice balanced acidity. Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Rotie Cellars Southern White Rhone Blend, Washington State, 2014 (US$32) – What is a Southern White Rhone Blend? For Rotie Cellars it is 50% Viognier, 25% Marsanne and 25% Roussanne. The wine has a light stone fruit nose. Medium body, round with medium acid. Apples up front with citrus on the finish. Rating: 4.5 stars
Ryan Patrick Bacchus Vineyard, Reserve Chardonnay, Columbia Valley, 2014 (US$30) – Lots of tropical fruit and toasted oak on the nose. Very plush and round mouth feel, with more tropical fruit and toasted oak on the palate. Rating: 5/5 stars
A Few Seattle Area Restaurant Bites
As I mentioned, there are 70 restaurants participating in Taste Washington. During the Grand Tasting, I tried to have a nibble and pair it with a wine from an adjacent table. Here are a few pictures of the types of dishes you can expect to sample next year.
But what about my favourite red Washington State wines? That list is coming soon, and will be posted on mywinepal.com. Cheers!