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First Notes from Taste Washington 2011

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A wicked wind is blowing in the Tri-Cities. Two days of breathing gunk from the desert is affecting my allergies. Joy. Although the back of my head is throbbing, I am sifting through my notes from Sunday's Taste Washington Seattle 2011. It should be no surprise that my bias, once again, is to the red wines. Looking at my notes, what surprised me is that many of my favorite wines were from Walla Walla and "Other".

Here is the breakdown by region: 
Walla Walla – 8 wineries (12 favorite wines posted).
Woodinville – 3 wineries (6 favorite wines posted).
Other – 4 wineries (11 favorite wines posted).

So, out of all the wines I tasted at Taste Washington Seattle 2011, I was able to identify 29 wines I truly enjoyed. These are wines I would personally purchase for myself or for gifts. Over the next several days I will reveal these wines and any relevant comments. As soon as the wind dies down, my allergies should go away, then I’ll be able to enjoy wine again.

Cheers!

Back from Taste Washington Seattle 2011

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Next Year I May Buy a Ticket


I’m back from Taste Washington Seattle 2011. It will take the next week for me to gather my thoughts and write about the wines I enjoyed this weekend. Even though I was one of the greeters at Taste Washington, there were opportunities to sample wine, food and to bend some ears. This year I made an effort to visit with winemakers I did not know.

A venue like Taste Washington, involving a couple hundred wineries, and a thousand+ different wines available to sample, along with 3,500 attendees, could be a daunting event to attend, let alone organize. But once again, my impression of this event is positive. Next year I may even buy a ticket, I need more time to visit with winemakers.


A special hello to the friendly group I met outside after the event (I’ll have a list of all those wines I enjoyed for you soon). And to the couple from Arizona who walked with me in the rain, thanks for the company and conversation, we’ll have to share that drink another time.

Tha…

2009 Covey Run Merlot a Best Buy of the Year!

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Found it on sale @ $5.59 buy it while you can.


This week I found the 2009 Covey Run Merlot on sale at the local Richland Safeway for the low, low price of $5.59. The price is low, the quality of the wine is not. There’s a lot of 2005, 2006 and 2007 Covey Run Merlot in town, this was the first 2009 Covey Run red wine I have found locally. On the neck of the screw cap are the words, “Best Value”, which it is. At $5.59 I’d call it a terrific value. My advice is to pass on the older vintages of Covey Run Merlot, but don’t pass on the 2009 Covey Run Merlot.

Covey Run was a Zillah, Washington winery, founded in 1982. I recall visiting the Covey Run Winery when it was called Quail Ridge. But that was over 20 years ago and times have changed. On the back of the bottle, it says the wine was cellared and bottled in Richland, Washington. But, according to their web site, their contact address is in Woodinville, Washington (that's across the lake from Seattle). The winery has changed hands a …

New Business Cards and Logo in Time for Taste Washington Seattle (updated)

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Friends, Taste Washington Seattle is only 2 weeks away. 

This year I will be attending the Grand Tasting on March 27th, as a volunteer. It’s been three years since I last participated at Taste Washington Seattle. In 2008 I had an absolutely glorious time (read post here) at Taste Washington. It was wine, food, winemakers, wine, food and some of the friendliest people you would want to meet. Taste Washington was unquestionably the highlight of 2008.
This year I’m in the country, available to attend, and looking forward to Taste Washington. Learn more about Taste Washington Seattle or buy tickets here.
New Business Cards Since I intend to meet and greet as many wine industry folks as possible, I must have current business cards on hand for my Seattle visit. Ah, business cards, those come in handy. I’ve been working on designing a logo for my wine blog for some time. Logo, self-branding, could be useful on a business card. None of my efforts have been satisfactory. I briefly toyed with the i…

#2 video review: Hamilton Cellars 2008 White Wine

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My second video wine review.

Enjoyed this wine so much, I decided to record opening and tasting a bottle. Hamilton Cellars is a Richland, Washington winery. Their renowned winemaker is Charlie Hoppes. Their 2008 White Wine is mostly Semillon with a little Viognier - and very lovely.



If you are unfamiliar with Washington Semillon, I encourage you to view my four videos from the Semillon Panel at the Walla Walla Wine Bloggers Conference 2010.

Hamilton Cellars
Located in Queensgate Village, 1950 Keene Rd, Bldg I, Richland, WA 99352
Phone: 509-628-8227
Tasting Room is open: Wednesday- Thursday- Sunday 12:00 - 5:00 pm, Friday - Sat 12:00 - 8:00 pm , or by appointment*
http://www.hamiltoncellars.com/

Cheers!

3 Year Tasting of Kitzke Cellars

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A Family and Friend Forward Washington Winery.

This week I had the pleasure of meeting Vickie Kitzke, Paul Kitzke and some of Kitzke Cellars closest friends. Vickie invited me to her home to sample all of Kitzke Cellars 2006 – 2008 delicious red wines. The 2008 vintages are not officially released.

If you are not familiar with Kitzke Cellars, that’s because they are a local, boutique, family-owned winery. They have been farming in the area since the 1970s, and have gradually transformed their orchards into vineyards. With fewer than 1,000 cases produced annually, Kitzke Cellars is by definition a boutique winery. Kitzke Cellars is located on Candy Mountain, off of Dallas road and a stone’s throw from West Richland, Washington. They are about a five minute drive from my home, that’s local friends. The family is working to finish construction of the tasting room; Vickie expects to open to the public sometime in April 2011. When they open, you will be able to visit the tasting room on Fri…