Alexandria Nicole Cellars comes to Woodinville

You might know the Alexandria Nicole Cellars tasting room in Prosser. You might even know about the winery’s Puget Sound Wine Dinner in Prosser on Oct. 6. (It sounds like a great event for $75 per person — starting at the tasting room at 11 a.m., moving on to a vineyard tour and cellar tasting, and then back to the tasting room for dinner.)

But did you know that the winery recently opened its doors to a new tasting room in Woodinville? You can now try Alexandria Nicole Cellars wine at 19501 144th Ave. NE, in a tasting room that is shared with Darby Cellars. We were there on a busy weekend and tasted several of their wines. We liked a few of them, but the one we took home was a $20 bottle of 2004 Estate Quarry Butte, a Bordeaux-style blend of five varietals: 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 6% Syrah, 6% Cab Franc and 1% Malbec. Barrel-aged 18 months in both French and American Oak, this wonderful blend was ripe with berry flavors, a balanced structure and a lengthy finish.

We also enjoyed the 2004 Estate Merlot from Destiny Ridge Vineyard in the Horse Heaven Hills. We weren’t surprised that this complex Merlot won the 2007 Seattle Wine Awards Grand Award of Excellence. It wasn’t a fruit bomb that is the trademark of many Merlots these days. This Merlot is a smooth, elegant blend of 79% Merlot, 19% Malbec and 2%Petit Verdot. The result is an intense bouquet of blackberries with refined tannins and a solid finish.

You can taste these wines and welcome Alexandria Nicole Cellars to Woodinville at the grand opening of the Woodinville tasting room on Sept. 22 from 4:30 – 9 p.m. I hope to see you there.