Taste Washington Switched Out My Brain – Part 2
March 30, 2011 by Erin Thomas
I ran three red lights yesterday afternoon. Not one, but three. Almost two full days after Taste Washington and I was still more dysfunctional than I normally am. Granted, I was talking on the phone but I’m usually much better than that!
Reflecting back onto Sunday afternoon, I can credit the core reason why I’m brain-dead to attempting to taste over 200 wineries’ selections and not spitting. Damn it, self!
I arrived in SODO promptly 17 minutes later than I planned on Sunday, checked my jacket which I almost left without 5 hours later and made it on my merry way. Since I focused my last food and wine event on the food (see: Seattle Food & Wine Experience), I decided to go my more natural route and touch on the wines only. Not a good idea when not spitting.
I did manage to take a picture collage of my favorites and texted descriptions to myself since I couldn’t find a notepad app on my incredible Droid. Here were my top billings:
El Corazon 2010 Red Frog Rose, Columbia Valley: I’ll drink whatever winemaker and owner Spencer Sievers puts in my glass. All things holy, he is pretty! And after batting my eyes and drinking (bad idea), subsequently all that got me was realizing that I was dizzy and that this wine is also pretty. With less than 60 cases made, it’s floral and full of red berry fruit and an awesome cumin spice element to give it an edge. Balanced, crisp and dry, patio sip that ish.
Bunnell Family Cellars 2009 Clifton Vineyard Viognier: Dipping into one of the newer sites in Wahluke Slope, winemaker Ron Bunnell takes a chance on a beautiful wine. Full of classic Viognier aromas like peach, melon and honeysuckle, the palate is round yet bright with plenty of zest which holds a strong backbone for a varietal that can tend to be flabby.
McCrea Cellars 2008 Grenache, Yakima Valley: This West Seattle-based couple brought their own table cloth to cover their section at Taste. They are that precious. Their wines, on the other hand, are strong statements of one of Washington’s only true Rhone Rangers. Smokey, spicy and all around sexy, this Grenache is full of dark stone fruit like plum and cherry, but still bright in acid and attractively balanced on the palate.
DiStefano Winery 2006 Sogno Cabernet Franc: Blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and some Malbec for strength, this wine is seriously Cab Franc in all of its glory. Cocoa and mushroom on the nose, backed by cedar and red currant, the raspberry fruit and classic hint of bell pepper hit on the palate. Far from gutsy, but made with precision, this wine deserves the finest of pork chops.
Andrew Will 2008 Two Blondes Vineyard Red Blend: Merlot takes the lead, Cabernet Sauvignon follows shortly in second, with Cabernet Franc trailing behind and Malbec holding up the tail end. This Yakima Valley wine takes a right-bank Bordeaux-style in blending, giving Merlot the win and rightly so. It takes full sophistication to the forefront for Merlot based-blends, with blackberry, mulberry and red currant aromas, comforted by gentle baking spices. The palate is powerful but finds its harmony amongst tannin, acid and fruit.
Okay, fine… I guess all-around, I just had a great time. I’ve been out of it because I’ve been in post-Taste Washington depression mode. I guess what I’m meaning to say is… Thank you, Taste Washington!