By Kori ~ April 2nd, 2014
Taste Washington, held in Seattle annually, is the nation’s largest single-region wine and food event. This past weekend brought Washington wine lovers from around the country to Seattle to drink, eat, and be merry. The event spanned two days with Seminars offered each morning followed by the Grand Tasting each afternoon. Hosted by Seattle’s Convention and Visitors Bureau in partnership with the Washington State Wine Commission, Taste Washington is the highlight of Taste Washington Wine Month.
The Grand Tasting is the “main event” each day. This year, Taste Washington featured 226 wineries pouring their wines and 68 Northwest restaurants serving small bites. With more than 780 wineries now open in the state of Washington, this event offers attendees the opportunity to try a large number of them in one place at one time. Considering the time and gas money you save not having to crisscross the state visiting tasting rooms and making appointments, the price of admission to Taste Washington is money well spent. Now, don’t get me wrong, once you attend an event like this and discover some favorite new wines and wineries, you will definitely want to make plans to travel to the wineries to visit and taste again. There is nothing like spending a long weekend in Washington wine country.
One of the best aspects of Taste Washington is that often you will find either the winemaker and/or winery owner pouring that winery’s wines. In addition to visiting with a number of people whose wines we have enjoyed in the past, we always find it a great opportunity to try some wines from wineries whose wines we have not previously tasted.
With over 800 wines featured at a large tasting like this, we can only taste through a limited number of them. Therefore, we don’t try to revisit wines that we have recently reviewed (i.e. Avennia, etc.). Keeping that in mind, my favorite wines from the Grand Tasting, from wineries whose wines we’ve enjoyed in the past, were the 2008 Boudreaux Cellars Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2011 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2010 Fall Line Winery Red Willow Red Wine, and the 2011 Rotie Cellars Northern Blend.
At Taste Washington last year, our most exciting discovery was Kevin White Winery. We deemed it as a winery to watch. Kevin White recently released his 2012 vintage wines, and this was our first opportunity to taste them. They did not disappoint. In fact, his 2012’s are even better than his 2011’s. The 2012 La Fraternité Red Wine and the 2012 En Hommage Red Wine are both outstanding. And, I expect them to only improve with some age. With price tags under $30, both wines deliver serious bang for your buck.
For the best new-to-us winery, my nod goes to Bartholomew Winery. While not a brand new winery, we had not tasted their wines previously. They were pouring three wines at the Grand Tasting, the 2013 Aligote, the 2013 Rosé of Carmenere, and the 2010 Reciprocity Red Blend. All three were very good and are worth checking out. Bart and Chona Fawbush founded Bartholomew Winery in 2007. Their tasting room located in Seattle’s historic Old Rainier Brewery building is open to the public for tastings on the weekends.
Did you attend Taste Washington this year? What were some of your favorite wines?
Even though Taste Washington Wine Month has concluded, here’s to enjoying excellent Washington wine all year long. Cheers!
Filed under: American Wine, Cabernet Sauvignon, Red Wine, Rose Wine, Washington State Wine, White Wine, Wine Activities/Events