Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Weird Winos & their Weird Wines - Weird WA Wines Under $16.00 - EBP - Seattle, WA

A couple weeks ago I decided to hold another Underground Winos of Seattle event. I had just recently come back from a week in Walla Walla where I tasted through some incredible malbecs, sangioveses and many more off-the-wall grape varieties. I was eager to taste more and I knew that most of my Winos would have a kick out of tasting other types besides the usual cabs, merlots, syrahs and chardonnays. So I scheduled the event for last sunday.

I didn't know what to expect, so I set up a few interesting rules that would have made my Winos think about what they were going to bring to the event and maybe even do a little research. And they did. Those rules were simple. The wines had to be anything but the following:
  • Cabernet Sauvignon

  • Syrah / Shiraz

  • Pinot Noir

  • Merlot

  • Sauvignon Blanc

  • Chardonnay

  • Riesling

  • Pinot Grigio / Pinot Gris

And the wines had to cost under $16.00 before taxes.

Not easy finding wines with that price point. The Winos also knew that the wines could not include, even if it was blend with a minimal amount, any of those varietals. They were put to the test. They all did extremely well.

We all met last sunday at EBP on the roof deck for this event. This time, unlike most events, we drew a very large group of about 20 to 22 Winos. Some Winos brought some friends and some brought their dogs. But every Wino had a bottle in hand. Very cool.

We tasted everything from Carmenere to Cabernet Franc to Dolcetto and Roussanne. Two Winos even found two different Muller-Thurgaus. How about that. In the end, we voted on the best of the best, white and red. We came up with this:
Favorite Whites (in favorite order):
  1. 2008 Novelty Hill Stillwater Creek Vnyd. Roussanne

  2. 2009 J. Bookwalter Winery Tercet White

  3. 2009 Mt. Baker Vineyards Muller-Thurgau

  4. 2009 Bainbridge Vineyards Muller-Thurgau
Favorite Reds (in favorite order):
  1. 2008 Airfield Estates Mustang Red

  2. Willow Crest Winery Cabernet Franc

  3. 2007 Skylite Cellars Walla Walla Malbec

  4. 2006 Morrison Lane Estate Winery Carmenere

  5. N/V Pacific Rim Winery Autumnus Red

  6. 2007 Two Mountains Winery Rattlesnake Hills Lemberger

  7. 2007 Camaraderie Cellars Cabernet Franc

  8. 2007 Stomani Cellars Columbia Valley Dolcetto

And Baise brought us the Cherry on-top, that one wine that makes every head turn. This is the kind of wine that will take a beer drinker and turn them into a very high-maintenance wine drinker. Baise brought us a 375 ml. bottle of 2006 Covey Run Reserve Semillon Ice Wine For a bottle of Ice Wine that costs in the low $20's, I was fairly impressed. I'm not a huge fan of Covey Run Winery, but this little treasure takes the cake. As for myself, my favorite wine of the day was the 2007 Skylite Cellars Malbec. I tasted this wine when I bought it at the tasting room last month. I really liked it. And I loved it this time. Unfortunately for me, I can't buy it here. I'd have to drive out to Walla Walla to buy more. Oh well, I guess I'll have to drive out to Walla Walla soon. Such a hard life.

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