Do not believe me if I tell you I'm not a fan of Washington Riesling.
Many long time wine drinkers may tell you that over time a change in palate occurs. Mine has. A progression from light to sweet white wines, to robust red wines. Then the dabbling in diverse white varieties and on to the realization that many different red varieties exist, which need to be explored. In my case there was a casualty. A wine I had mostly given up on in preference to tastier realms. Riesling. Washington Riesling.
Occasionally, a Washington Riesling comes my way which forces me to recognize the fallacy of my prejudice. The Gård Vintners 2011 Riesling Grand Klasse Columbia Valley is such a wine. Provided by the winery, this is the third Gård Vintners I had the pleasure to taste and review. You can now consider me a fan.
Gård Vintners is a family owned and operated winery. "Gård" means "farm" in many Scandinavian languages and is a tribute to the owners Scandinavian heritage and farming tradition. The Lawrence family, founders of Gård Vintners, have farmed the Royal Slope in Washington's Columbia Valley for over 45 years. Brothers Hervey "Sandy" Lawrence and John Lawrence, along with John's son Josh Lawrence, launched Gård Vintners, a product of Lawrence Cellars, in 2006.
Tasting Notes Gård Vintners 2011 Riesling Grand Klasse
Color: Pale gold with silver highlights
Nose: Apple, pear, mineral, spice - petrol, vanilla, melon and toasted sourdough as the wine warmed, ending with a floral note.
Palate: Yum, so yum. Pear, apple, mineral, good mouth feel almost creamy, lovely fruit with a hint of pineapple, acid mid-plate with proper acid on the dry finish. Pow! My style of Riesling. I Thoroughly enjoyed the Gård Vintners 2011 Riesling. Bravo Mr. Morell.
Thoughts: This is a serious Washington Riesling that delivered. Beautifully balanced with an intriguing nose, lovely on the palate but not over the top, with a dry, not too crisp, mineral finish. One of my favorite Rieslings of the year. Dismiss my comments that Riesling is not a favored Washington variety. The folks at Gård Vintners have outdone themselves with their 2011 Grand Klasse. Discover, how good Washington Riesling can be, or rediscover Washington Riesling as I have. Strongly Recommended.
Lawrence Vineyard - Estate
AVA: Columbia Valley
RS: 2.9 g/L
Winemaker: Aryn Morell
Production: 294 Cases
Sample provided by the winery
Sourced from Lawrence Vineyards Riesling Block 2, Clone 2 and 9. Barrel fermented 86% (82% new French oak, 18% used French oak), stainless 14%. Bottled May 2012. Lawrence Vineyards is located in the Columbia Valley on Frenchman Hills at elevations of 1,365 - 1,675 feet. A southern facing slope provides ideal growing conditions.
13000 Road D. SW
Royal City, WA 99357
My Thanks to Gård Vintners for sharing this lovely wine. Time for a visit.