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Showing posts from May, 2011

12 PM Blogger/Twitter Meet-Up @ Barnard Griffin Winery 30 May 2011

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Taste and Tweet Monday at Barnard Griffin Winery.

Open invite to anyone who blogs or tweets wine, or enjoys reading our posts, we're meeting at Barnard Griffin Winery, at noon on Monday, May 30th. Join us for a glass of wine or a tasting flight. This is an opportunity to visit with local wine fans and those visiting the Tri-Cities this holiday weekend. Bring a camera and add some new photos to your wine blog. The wine is always good and the company will be too. Hope to see you Monday.

If you have not visited the Barnard Griffin Winery recently, here's a link to my post "Barnard Griffin Winery Visit Wows" from February this year.

note: I stopped by the winery yesterday, they were bottling the 2010 Chardonnay. As busy as they were, Rob Griffin and his Cellar Master, Miah took time to chat with me and show off their improved bottling line - thank you. But, I did not have an opportunity to sample any wine - I will Monday.

Cheers!

Barnard Griffin Winery on twitter: @BGW…

2011 Fourth Annual North American Wine Bloggers Conference (WBC11).

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Virginia is Wine Country.
I’m learning about Virginia Wine in preparation for the 2011 Wine Blogger’s Conference in Charlottesville, Virginia. If you have never attended a Wine Bloggers Conference, it is about wine bloggers, new media innovators, and wine industry leaders.

This year, the 2011 Wine Bloggers Conference is on July 22-24, 2011 in Charlottesville, Virginia. This will be the fourth annual North American Wine Bloggers Conference - the premier conference for new media and the wine industry. These Conferences are unique opportunities to learn about and discuss the intersection of wine with the world of new media including blogging, social media, and more.

Learn more or register at: http://winebloggersconference.org/america/

Last year I attended the third annual Wine Blogger’s Conference (WBC10) in Walla Walla, Washington. It was a spectacular and educational time. WBC10 is responsible for inspiring me to engage better with my audience by leveraging the social media tools I al…

Silver Lake Winery - Escape to Zillah

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2008 Silver Lake Cabernet Merlot Reviewed

Two weeks ago I wrote about my impulsive trip to Zillah, Washington (Escape to Zillah). It was a sparkling, sunny morning when the road called out to me. I found myself unpredictably in the small winery community of Zillah, Washington. When in wine country, one should take advantage of the occasion to go taste wine. Tooling down the winding, shoulder-less road, I randomly chose, and followed the sign pointing the way to Silver Lake Winery.

Tickets Still Available for Revelry on Red Mountain

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Good news! Ticket sales for Revelry at Red Mountain exceed last year. More good news -- your ticket is still available. Tickets on sale now at http://www.auctionofwashingtonwines.org/

And congratulations to Jacquie Stephens on winning her two tickets to one of the best events of the season.

Hope to see you Saturday night on Red Mountain. Cheers!

Revelry on Red Mountain

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Saturday 28 May 2011
The Who’s Who…Andrew Will (made by 2011 Honorary Vintner, Chris Camarda), J. Bookwalter Winery (a winery started by 2011 Honorary Grower, Jerry Bookwalter), Col Solare, Cooper Wine Company, Corvus, DeLille, Fidelitas, Gamache, Goedhart, Grand Reve, Hedges (pioneers on Red Mountain), Hightower Cellars, Kiona, Mark Ryan, Obelisco, Portrait, Quilceda Creek, Seven Hills, Tapteil and Terra Blanca.

All pouring. All tasting. All mingling. All good.

Be there. Be WoW’d on May 28, 2011.

Tickets on sale now at http://www.auctionofwashingtonwines.org/

Last Chance to Win Tickets to Revelry on Red Mountain

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Revelry on Red Mountain is Saturday, May 28th, 20011. Tickets are $95 per person but if you act today, you could win free tickets!

Wild 4 Washington Wine will be giving away two tickets to one lucky person!

A winner will be selected at random on Wednesday morning, May 25, 2011 (tomorrow).

How to Enter: Follow Wild 4 Washington Wine on Twitter and tweet, “@wild4wawine I want to go to Revelry on Red Mountain #wawine”  Or, on Facebook Like the Wild 4 Washington Wine page and post a comment on the page with the phrase “I want to go to Revelry on Red Mountain”. Only one entry per person will be accepted, but you can post or tweet about this ticket giveaway as often as you like.

You must Like and post to Facebook or tweet @Wild4WaWine, by 2:00 AM pacific time Wednesday, May 25th, 2011. A random drawing will determine the winner Wednesday.

Thank you to Auction of Washington Wines for sponsoring this give away - it is appreciated. To learn more about Revelry on Red Mountain and to purchase tick…

2010 Badger Mountain NSA Organic Chardonnay: Reviewed

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A lovely unoaked, NSA, Organic Chardonnay in a pretty blue bottle.

I have enjoyed visiting Badger Mountain and Powers Winery for nearly 20 years. Located in a residential neighborhood, Badger Mountain Winery is the arm of Powers Winery which grows organic grapes and bottles Organic wines. Bill Powers and his family have been crafting fantastic wines for many years. He and his son Greg planted Badger Mountain vineyard in 1982. In 1990 Badger Mountain Vineyard became the first Certified Organic wine grape vineyard in Washington State. In 2010, Bill Powers was inducted into the Legend of Washington Wine at the Walter Clore Center.

A visit to this winery can be very rewarding. The solar powered tasting room has a fantastic selection of Badger Mountain and Powers white and red wines; and some of the best hospitality. Outside you’ll find a lovely green area with picnic tables for, well…picnics. The next time you visit the Tri-Cities, do not miss visiting this winery. If you have never visi…

2003 Luis Cañas Rioja Reserva: Reviewed

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There's something elusive in this wine, an aroma and a flavor which I can't quite pin down. The mystery appeals to me and makes this wine all the more captivating. Regular readers may realize by now that I'm a fan of Tempranillo. So it should be no surprise that I like Spanish wines. This Rioja is made from a blend of Tempranillo and Graciano grapes.

About Graciano
The high-acidity of the Graciano grape makes it a good companion for blending with low-acid varieties like Tempranillo. Although considered a high-quality grape, grown primarily in Rioja and Navarra, it is low yielding, which is prompting some Spanish growers to replace this varietal with more productive vines. In France Graciano is known as Morrastel.

I found this Rioja pleasingly medium dry, with medium body, and a medium finish. With a subtle nose, this smooth drinking wine has developed into an enjoyable, ready to drink now wine. It should pair well with grilled or smoked meats and is suitable for taking in …

Punkt Genau (on the dot)

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A Perfect Austrian Sparkler.


Punkt Genau (on the dot) is a dry Sparkling White Wine from Austria. On the label you will see it labeled Trocken/Dry/Brut. This wine is made from Gruner Veltliner grapes, from the heart of the Veinviertel, 11% alcohol. Grüner Veltliner is Austria’s most important white grape variety, accounting for around one third of all white grapes planted.

I was shopping for a sparkling wine at the local grocer and this bottle caught my eye (I'm always shopping for a good sparkling wine). I was drawn to the orange label and the interesting shape of the bottle. Looking at this photo, you may notice the screw cap, it has to be the smallest screw cap I've seen on a bottle of wine. I think the long neck makes this bottle look cool.

This is only the second bottle of Gruner Veltliner I've enjoyed. My first Gruner Veltliner was a bottle of B.C. wine I bought in Canada last year. This is my first sparkling Gruner Veltliner - and a  great example I might add. Accor…

Bonair Winery - Escape to Zillah

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An Impulsive Tasting Trip to Zillah, Washington.
(re-post, original post date 11 May 2011)

The glorious sunshine has returned to the Columbia Valley. Finally, spring has arrived. This perfect, hopefully not temporary, weather had me yearning to get out of town yesterday. Hitting the road impulsively, I found myself enjoying the drive and the tunes, before I knew it, I was exiting at Zillah.

Zillah is a small community in the Yakima Valley; Bonair winery is located in the Rattlesnake Hills AVA, one of many wineries in the area. My last visit to Zillah was in 2007, I was attending Two Mountain Vineyards “Vineyard Management” class taught by Matt Rawn.


Feeling a bit peckish, and craving carnitas tacos, I went to my favorite Zillah restaurant, El Ranchito. To my disappointment, I found El Ranchito empty, closed, shut-down, and out of business. What a shame. I have fond memories of eating and shopping there. It’s been a while since I visited.

Feeling a little down, I navigated road construc…

Problems with host provider - Blogger

I apologize for the problems with my recent posts. Blogger is having issues with site maintenance...

My site is working again, but the last two posts disappeared and were not restored.
I have re-posted information about Revelry on Red Mountain and the giveaway for 2 tickets to the event. Follow directions for entering. This will be a very fun event, even if you don't win the free tickets.My post on Bonair Winery is gone. I will have to re-post it too.I was out kayaking on the Columbia River today - will have to do that more often.

We have a lovely sunny afternoon in the Columbia Valley today, but it is supposed to rain all weekend. Seize the fun while you can and drink the wine you enjoy with the people you enjoy being with.

Cheers!

How To: Win Tickets to Revelry on Red Mountain

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(re-posted)
ATTEND A BEAUTIFUL EVENING ON RED MOUNTAIN OVER MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND! Revelry on Red Mountain – Saturday, May 28, 2011 AT 6:00 PM

Tickets are still available at the official website, but Wild 4 Washington Wine has one pair of tickets to give away to a lucky reader.

This unique event will be on the terrace of the lovely Col Solare Winery. All Red Mountain wines will be featured, with winemakers housed on Red Mountain or leveraging Red Mountain fruit. Enjoy exceptional cuisine and bid on exciting wine items offered in the silent auction. Make this your holiday weekend destination!
Tickets are $95 per person but if you act today, you could win free tickets!
Wild 4 Washington Wine will be giving away two tickets to one lucky person!

The winner will be randomly drawn from the Wild 4 Washington Wine Facebook page and from @wild4wawine Twitter Followers. You can enter by: Follow Wild 4 Washington Wine on Twitter and tweet, “@wild4wawine I want to go to Revelry on Red Mountain #wawin…

Thomas O’Neil Cellars - Brand Spanking New!

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A Venue for Wine, Music and Celebrations.

Last month I stopped by for the grand opening of Thomas O’Neil Cellars. They are the first production winery with a tasting room in North Richland. Arriving around 3 pm, on a cold and wet afternoon, I was warmly greeted by Mr. and Mrs. O'Neil and friends. Tom O'Neil took time to show me his facility and to take me through his entire lineup of Rhone style wines*.

Mr. O’Neil has been making wine for about 25 years. Originally from Michigan, he now resides in Richland, Washington with his lovely wife Tricia. Tom interned with Chateau Ste. Michelle and then became an assistant winemaker at Milbrandt Vineyards. He just opened his Richland winery on April 15, 2011.

 I found all of the Thomas O'Neil wines enjoyable and priced reasonably. Expect a detailed tasting review soon.
One of the other interesting aspects of Thomas O’Neil Cellars is their outdoor venue for live music. Stop by the winery on Friday and Saturday evenings and you'll b…

Walla Walla Spring Release Weekend - May 6-8, 2011

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Resources for visiting Walla Walla this weekend.
I had a spectacular time in Walla Walla during last years Spring Release Weekend. While I cannot attend this year, if you are going, then I hope these links help you make the most of your time. Walla Walla has over 100 wineries, many will be open for tasting this weekend. I suggest you download a copy of theEvent Brochure before you head out. Be safe and have fun.

Cheers!

1. Walla Walla Valley Wine Region. They have a .pdf of the participating wineries, locations, hours, etc. I'd print out a copy to take with, or transfer a copy to your iPad.
2.  My Favorite Walla Walla Wines at Taste Washington Seattle. This is by no means a definitive list.
3. Walla Walla Wine Incubators. There are five wineries located at the Incubators near the airport. Well worth the visit.
4. Ruby Ruth Rose' Walla Walla Wonderful. I really enjoyed the Adamant Cellars wines.
5. Garrison Creek Cellars. If you can arrange a visit in advance, you will be very …

2008 Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon Review

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Break out the Steak and Chateau Smith, it’s sunny in the Columbia Valley!

It’s finally grilling season in SE Washington, sunshine and no wind. After experiencing the coldest April on record, I'm ready for the sun. Now that the Columbia Valley is warming up, we have the perfect weather for outdoor activities, including: wine tasting and grilling.

Speaking of grilling, I fired up the grill to cook some nice rib-eyes. After a month without eating red meat, I was eager to break my meat fast. But which wine to pair with my grilled steak? My choice, a classic Walla Walla, Washington, made in the USA, 2008 Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon.

That's right, a Chateau Smith!

I choose the Chateau Smith because I wanted a food friendly, affordable, easy to enjoy wine. This wine came up aces. I’ve met winemaker Charles Smith a couple of times (Seattle magazine 2010 winemaker of the year), at last year’s Wine Blogger Conference in Walla Walla and in 2008 at Taste Washington Seattle. Once you…