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Showing posts from September, 2012

2011 Vintage Riesling Launch

Today I am tweeting about the  2011 vintage Rieslings from the Finger Lakes. Saturday, September 22, 2012 6:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. EST. We will be using #FLXwine in our tweets. Samples provided by:  Finger Lakes Wine Alliance . Photo: My four samples of Finger Lakes Riesling. This year twenty Finger Lakes wineries are participating in the Riesling Launch.  Look for the Rieslings from these producers at your local wine shops, restaurants and wine bars.  Photo: Riesling vineyard, Courtesy Finger Lakes Wine Alliance. Quick facts on the Finger Lakes Established October 1, 1982  100 plus wineries  11,000 cares under vine  600 + acres of Riesling  100,000 cases of Riesling  Small, specific producers whose wine reflects place and personality  Strong, regional aromatic whites with a focus on Riesling. The average producer makes 2.5 styles of Riesling wine a year.  The Finger Lakes is home to over 200 Riesling brands.  Hope you can join us. Cheers!

Last Day of Summer, Smoke, Goose Ridge Visit, Events

As we say goodbye to summer, the Columbia Valley is under a blanket of smoke. Thousands of firefighters are fighting dozens of wildfires. It's been a perfect growing season, a warm, dry summer, with no rain. Earlier this month, lightning started the fires on the east slope of the Cascade Mountains. Locally, in the Tri-Cities and in Walla Walla, air quality has been listed as unsafe for sensitive groups.  In the Wenatchee area, closer to the fires, air quality is listed as "hazardous." Weather forecasters do not expect the smoke to clear any time soon. The forest fires rage on. Yuck. Photo: View east August 2012 Rattlesnake Mountain visible in background. Photo: Smoky view east on 20 September 2012. Photo: Today's smoky view on 21 September 2012. Yesterday, in spite of the smoke, I made time for a brief visit at  Goose Ridge Winery . The Goose Ridge tasting room is located on Dallas Road, in Richland. My visit was short, but I managed to take some phot

Review: Fidelitas 2009 Red Mountain Merlot

Red-Mountain-Merlot.  Three words with deep meaning for those of us who know. Last month I was in Portland, Oregon for the fifth annual Wine Bloggers Conference . There's a lot of wine poured and consumed at these events. A lot. So, why did I bring along a bottle of Fidelitas Red Mountain Merlot? It was my hope to find an opportunity to share this wonderful wine. A few quiet moments, and  a couple of fellow wine compatriots was all I needed to open this lovely bottle of Washington wine. Photo: Empty bottle of Fidelitas 2009 Red Mountain Merlot. Winemaker Charlie Hoppes has spent the past 20 + years as a leading winemaker for several noted Washington wineries. He was Assistant Winemaker at Chateau Ste. Michelle in Woodinville, then Head Red Winemaker at Chateau Ste. Michelle's facility at Paterson, where he helped create the premium label for Col Solare's first two vintages. In 1999 Charlie worked to help start Three Rivers Winery in Walla Walla. He created his own

Review: the ghost in the machine Columbia Valley Red Wine 2010

When I bought this bottle at Costco, I did not realize that this wine was made by Chris Gorman of Gorman Winery and Mark Ryan McNeilly of Mark Ryan Winery . After a little research, I learned that the 2010 ghost in the machine is part of a collaborative wine project now named The Giant Wine Company .  Chris and Marks goal? To produce reasonably priced wines for newer wine drinkers. In a word “accessible” wines. I've met Mark a couple of times, the first time was last year at Revelry on Red Mountain and the second was earlier this year at Taste Washington Seattle . He's tall of stature, friendly, a winemaker who's earned many accolades. Once you taste his wines, you'll understand why they are so highly sought-after. I have not had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Gorman, he's now on my list. I suggest you buy this red wine. It will be the most affordable Mark Ryan/Chris Gorman wine you will ever find. It's also very good.  Photo: the ghost in the machine C

Review: 2010 Bookwalter Subplot No 26 Red Wine

Columbia Valley, Washington We are enjoying perfect end of summer weather in the Columbia Valley. Freaking gorgeous days and cool nights, perfect for ripening grapes. This kind of weather is also perfect grilling weather. Tonight I made grilled avocado, bacon, cheese-burgers and paired those tasty burgers with Subplot No 26.  Photo: 2010 Subplot No 26 red wine with burger. Subplot No 26 is made by a local winery, Bookwalter Winery. Bookwalter is just minutes from my home. I've been drinking their wine since 1986. And their 2010 Bookwalter Subplot No 26 Red Wine delivered the goods. Ah, grilled burgers, I gently brushed the buns with olive oil and toasted them until they were just golden, added a bit of mayo, a squirt of ketchup, sliced onion, cheddar cheese, a slice of tomato, two pieces of bacon, lettuce and some avocado to complete my burger. Yeah baby. Wine tasting notes: Color: garnet red Nose: coffee, herbal, dark fruit, blueberry, earthiness, pencil shavings. F

Review: Alexandria Nicole 2008 Malbec Block 20 Estate Grown

Photo: Alexandria Nicole Cellars 2008 Malbec. Fabulous Horse Heaven Hills Malbec. Last month I visited Alexandria Nicole Cellars , a local Washington winery dedicated to producing small lots of hand-crafted wine, at their Destiny Ridge Estate vineyard and winery. Destiny Ridge vineyard is located high above the bluffs on the Columbia River, near the town of Paterson, Washington, where many different varietals thrive in soils and micro-climate conditions of the Horse Heaven Hills AVA. I'm delighted to share with you my experience with the Alexandria Nicole 2008 Malbec.   Photo: View of Destiny Ridge Vineyard, Horse Heaven Hills AVA. Washington wine can be such an exquisite personal experience. The Alexandria Nicole 2008 Malbec is no exception. Their Block 20 Estate grown Malbec was wrapped in gorgeous color. When I stuck my nose in the glass, lush aromas of dark fruit, licorice, spice, black pepper, and chocolate, vibrated into a floral flourish, merrily carr