By Kori ~ August 24th, 2010.
This past weekend, the Washington wine industry hosted its 23rd annual Auction of Washington Wines. The Auction has raised more than $24 million since its inception in 1988 to benefit the uncompensated care program at Seattle Children’s Hospital and since 2001, the Washington Wine Education Foundation, funding viticultural and enological research across the state. This year’s Auction raised over $1.4 million.
The three-day event included a Barrel Auction and Picnic with the Winemakers, winemaker dinners, a run/walk, and a Gala Auction. Dad (John) and I attended the Barrel Auction and Picnic at Chateau Ste. Michelle in Woodinville, Washington. This was the first year that we have had the pleasure to attend, and it truly is an outstanding event for a great cause.
The highlight of the Picnic is the Barrel Auction itself in which bidders have the chance to win future, limited-release wines from twenty participating wineries. All attendees have the opportunity to taste wines from those participating wineries to determine whether or not they want to bid. While we did not taste them all, our favorites of the ones we did taste were the 2009 Woodward Canyon Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2009 Grand Reve Collaboration Series VI (Mourvedre/Syrah/Grenache), and the 2007 Adams Bench Red Willow Cabernet Sauvignon. In fact, Dad (John) was one of the winning bidders for a case of 2009 Adams Bench Red Willow Cabernet Sauvignon. We’re looking forward to its release in 2012. The picnic also featured a silent auction and games including a Restaurant Balloon Pop, Wheel of Wine, and Ring Toss. The proceeds for this year’s Barrel Auction and Picnic totaled more than $60,000.
In addition to outstanding wines, Picnic attendees were also served wonderful food prepared by the talented chefs from Tulalip Resort Casino. I had the pleasure to get a sneak preview of the food at a tweet-up earlier this month so I made sure to make the rounds at the food tents. Once again, I was blown away by the creations of Tulalip’s amazing pastry chef Nikol Nakamura. Her goober bars, strawberry pop tarts, and brownie cheesecake pops themselves were worth the price of admission.
According to Ryan Pennington of the Washington Wine Commission, 1,100 tickets were sold for the Barrel Auction and Picnic, which was an increase over the last two years. If you weren’t able to attend this year’s Auction, I encourage you to go ahead and mark your calendar for next year, August 18-20, 2011. It truly is a great weekend for both Washington wine and charity.
Filed under: American Wine, Cabernet Sauvignon, Food & Wine, Red Wine, Washington State Wine, Wine Activities/Events