Best of 2011 in Washington Wine Country

By John ~ January 2nd, 2012.

After visiting more wineries and tasting more Washington wines than I can count, meeting many of the best winemakers in Washington, and walking the rows in many of the best known vineyards in the state, these are the Wine Peeps team’s picks as the best of 2011 in Washington Wine Country.

BEST WINE: 2008 Rasa Vineyards Creative Impulse (featured July 6)
Honorable Mention: 2008 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon (featured Aug 31), 2008 Fielding Hills Cabernet Franc (featured Feb 23), and 2001 Eroica Single Berry Select Riesling [Chateau Ste. Michelle & Dr. Loosen] (featured Sept 28)

BEST WINERY: Chateau Ste. Michelle (featured in a number of posts, including Jan 17, Aug 15, Sept 28, and Oct 17 as well as in seven A Wine for Tonight posts)
Honorable Mention: Rasa Vineyards and Fielding Hills Winery

BEST VARIETY/TYPE: Red Blends (featured in a number of posts, including June 22)
Honorable Mention: Cabernet Franc and Riesling

BEST WINEMAKER: Billo Naravane of Rasa Vineyards
Honorable Mention: Bob Bertheau of Chateau Ste. Michelle

BEST VINEYARD: Champoux Vineyards (based on wines released in 2011 produced from Champoux Vineyards fruit)
Honorable Mention: DuBrul Vineyard (our 2010 winner) and Boushey Vineyards (always a favorite)

BEST AVA: Horse Heaven Hills
Honorable Mention: Wahluke Slope and Yakima Valley

BEST NEWCOMER: JB Neufeld Winery (featured Mar 30)
Honorable Mention: Mackey Vineyards (featured Oct 3)

BEST WINE SHOP: Wine World Warehouse (repeat winner)
Honorable Mention: Fred Meyer – Ballard, Seattle; Esquin Wine Merchants, Seattle; Pete’s Wine Shop – Eastside, Bellevue

BEST WINE BAR: Purple Café & Wine Bar, Woodinville
Honorable Mention: URBAN enoteca, Seattle

BEST WINE EVENT: Auction of Washington Wines (featured Aug 26)
Honorable Mention: Taste Washington (featured Mar 30)

Congratulations to all of the winners! Keep up the good work. We would encourage all Washington wine lovers to patronize these producers, vendors, and events. They are the cream of the crop.

Happy New Year! Best wishes for a happy, healthy, prosperous, and wine-filled 2012!

Filed under: American Wine, Best of, Washington State Wine

Reader's Comments

  1. TheGourmetCoffeeGuy | January 2nd, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    It must have been a challenge putting this best of 2011 wine list! You certainly covered last year many great wines and this list has enough to enjoy for a long time… Looking forward to your 2012 posts. Happy New Year and thank you for sharing your insights!

  2. John | January 3rd, 2012 at 6:20 am

    Thank you for your kind comments, and best wishes to you for the New Year!

  3. Brooke Neufeld | January 3rd, 2012 at 7:09 am

    Thank-you Wine Peeps and Happy New Year!

  4. John | January 3rd, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    You are welcome. Happy New Year to you as well.

  5. Pinto Naravane | January 11th, 2012 at 9:05 am

    Thank you for the honors!

  6. John | January 11th, 2012 at 12:42 pm

    They are well-deserved. Hope to get by to see you this summer.