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Winners of the 2013 Washington State Wine Awards

This week I attended the Washington State Wine Awards in Seattle, Washington.

On Monday, January 14th, McCaw Hall in Seattle, Washington, fourteen Washington state businesses and individuals were recognized within their industries. Once again, Washington wine was in the well deserved spotlight, but from a different angle. The Washington State Wine Awards honors industries and individuals who raise the profile of Washington wine. I look forward to sharing the stories of some of these people.
note: If you are a Sommelier, please contact me, I would appreciate the opportunity to interview you for future posts (email thank you).

A large crowd was in attendance. Tension was palpable.

This was my first time attending this award event. All of the award winners were acknowledged for making a difference in promoting Washington wine. Bravo, that is something I can stand behind and encourage more to emulate. Bonus, I now have a list of restaurants and venues which excel at showcasing Washington wine. I encourage you to support these venues (see the list of award winners below).

Waiting for the awards to be announced.

McCaw Hall, a grand entrance.

The award winners will be featured in a full-page ad in 10 key publications: Food and Wine, Wine Spectator, Town and Country, Elle Décor, RealSimple, Seattle Magazine, Seattle Met, Sunset, SIP NorthwestWinePress Northwest, and the 2013 Washington State Wine Tour Guide.

Introductions by Steve Warner, CEO, Washington State Wine Commission.
Prizes ranged from certificates and wine carriers to etched magnums. Three winners received custom goblets designed by Seattle Glassblowing Studio. These three beautiful works of art look like they were designed for royalty. Deserving of any king or queen of the past 1,000 years. Master Sommelier Shayn Bjornholm emceed the event.

Wine service preparation.
If you were wondering, yes, an abundance of excellent wine was available for tasting. Attendees were able to taste wines from 60 Washington State vintners. Look for my next post, it will be about the lovely wines I sampled and enjoyed. Surprising to me, there were many wineries I met for the first time.

The 2013 Winners
Walter Clore Honorarium: Doug Charles (Anacortes).
The Walter Clore Honorarium recognizes an individual who has demonstrated dedication to the advancement of the Washington wine industry. Charles is the owner of Compass Wines store, where he dedicates more than 75 percent of his inventory to Washington State wines. His label dedreckoning is made by some of the top producers in the state.
Restaurant of the Year: Visconti’s of Wenatchee
Sommelier of the Year: Thomas Price of Metropolitan Grill (Seattle)
Best Event Featuring Washington Wine: Urbane (Seattle)
Independent Restaurant of the Year: Copperleaf Restaurant at the Cedarbrook Lodge (SeaTac)
Best Restaurant Group: Mackay Restaurant Group, operator of El Gaucho restaurants (Western Washington)
Tourism Champion of the Year: Seattle’s Convention and Visitors Bureau
Tourism Concierge of the Year: Anne Peavey, of Seattle’s Convention and Bureau Visitor
Hotel of the Year: Hotel Vintage Park (Seattle)
Retailer of the Year: Metropolitan Market (Seattle, Kirkland)
Retailer Group of the Year: Yoke’s Fresh Markets (Eastern Washington)
Independent Retailer of the Year: Wine World and Spirits (Seattle)
Retail Steward of the Year: Doug King of Metropolitan Market
Distributor of the Year:Young’s Market Company (Western United States)
Distributor Salesperson of the Year:Kris Patten of Young’s Market Company (Seattle)

Grand Awards:

  • Anthony's at Columbia Point (Richland)
  • Anthony's at Pier 66 (Seattle)
  • AQUA by El Gaucho (Seattle)
  • Barking Frog at Willows Lodge (Woodinville)
  • Bistro San Martin (Arlington)
  • Canlis Restaurant (Seattle)
  • Cypress Lounge and Wine Bar at The Westin Bellevue
  • Daniel's Broiler Prime Steaks and Chops of Bellevue
  • El Gaucho Bellevue
  • El Gaucho Seattle
  • RN74 (Seattle)
  • SkyCity at the Space Needle
  • Sun Mountain Lodge (Winthrop)
  • Swing Wine Bar (Olympia)
  • The Marc at the Marcus Whitman (Walla Walla)
  • The Metropolitan Grill (Seattle)
  • The Triple Door (Seattle)
  • Tulalip Bay at the Tulalip Resort and Casino
  • Valley Cafe (Ellensburg)
  • Visconti's of Leavenworth
  • Washington Athletic Club (Seattle)
  • Waterstreet Cafe and Bar (Olympia)
  • Wild Ginger (Seattle location)
  • Compass Wines (Anacortes)
  • Full Pull Wines (Seattle)
  • Willows Lodge (Woodinville)
  • Marcus Whitman Hotel & Conference Center (Walla Walla)
  • Tri-Cities Visitor and Convention Bureau (Kennewick)
  • Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau

Awards of Distinction:

  • Acqua Via (Olympia)
  • Adriatic Grill Italian Cuisine and Wine Bar (Tacoma)
  • Assaggio Ristorante (Seattle)
  • Blackfish Wild Salmon Grill & Bar at Tulalip Casino
  • Blueacre Seafood (Seattle)
  • Breadline Cafe (Omak)
  • Cafe Flora (Seattle)
  • Chandler's Crabhouse (Seattle)
  • Churchill's Steakhouse (Spokane)
  • FAR-EATS (Seattle)
  • Ivar's Acres of Clams (Seattle)
  • Ivar's Mukilteo Landing Restaurant
  • LOCAL 360 (Seattle)
  • Masselow's Restaurant at Northern Quest Resort and Casino (Spokane)
  • Matt's in the Market (Seattle)
  • Monsoon Seattle
  • Palisade Waterfront Restaurant (Seattle)
  • Pike Brewing Company (Seattle)
  • Purple Cafe and Wine Bar (four locations – Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Woodinville)
  • Ristorante Italianissimo (Woodinville)
  • Rover's Restaurant (Seattle)
  • Salty's at Redondo Beach (Seattle)
  • Salty’s on Alki Beach (Seattle)
  • Spazzo Italian Grill & Wine Bar (Redmond)
  • Steelhead Diner (Seattle)
  • The Fireside Restaurant at the Resort at Port Ludlow
  • The Lincoln Center (Spokane)
  • The Station Pizzeria (Woodinville)
  • Toulouse Petit Kitchen & Lounge (Seattle)
  • Tuscany Downtown (Prosser)
  • Volterra (Seattle location)
  • Washington State Convention Center (Seattle)
  • Wild Ginger at the Bravern (Bellevue)
  • Sullivan's Steakhouse (Seattle)
  • Urbane (Seattle)

For more information on Washington State wine, visit
A big thank you to everyone involved in this award program. It was a pleasure to attend. The promotion of Washington Wine is the reason I started Wild 4 Washington Wine. Bravo to everyone nominated and awarded this year. Some of us are paying attention and notice the quality service you provide while promoting Washington Wine.


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