Alexandria Nicole Cellars Knows How to Party (and Make Great Wine)

Our wine weekend started out last night with an amazing release party at Alexandria Nicole Cellars’ tasting room in Woodinville. The party was for wine club members, and the celebration was particularly sweet after Paul Gregutt of The Seattle Times ranked ANC’s wine club the best in Washington state.

About 400 people packed into the tasting room. The crowd was so deep that we overheard conversations such as “It’s so packed in here, if you get drunk, it’s impossible to fall over” and “There are so many people here that ANC should start holding this event at Qwest Field!”

The wine was flowing, the appetizers were delicious, the staff and volunteers were amazing, and the music was perfect for this type of event. Most importantly, people were buzzing about winemaker Jarrod Boyle’s new ANC releases: 2005 Block 17 Syrah, 2005 Estate Merlot and 2006 Syrah Ice Wine.

2005 Block 17 Syrah is made from 100% estate fruit from Destiny Ridge Vineyard–77% Syrah, 13% Grenache, 7% Roussanne and rounded out with 3% Viognier. As a result, this wine is full-bodied with a rich bouquet of fruit aromas, along with white pepper, smoke and other spice flavors that identify good Syrahs.

2005 Estate Merlot is from the Horse Heaven Hills and is overflowing with a rich, dark berry and smoked cedar bouquet. This elegant wine is made of 76% Merlot, 21% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot.

2006 Syrah Ice Wine is made of 100% Syrah grapes that were hand-harvested and pressed while frozen. According to the tasting notes, “Left on the vine to hang weeks past normal harvesting, severe shrivel and dehydration increased concentrated flavors and aromas when temperatures fell to 17 degrees and finally picked in the pre-dawn hours of Nov. 1, 2006 at 43 brix residual sugar.” Jarrod suggests this ice wine should be paired with fresh fruit, nuts and gorgonzola … “or treat the wine as the dessert itself and pour over a bowl of fresh berries.”

So we’re happy to say that Jarrod has done it again! And it was great to chat with him, and briefly see Ali as we were leaving.


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About Margot

Margot has been writing about wine since 1997 at KOIN-TV in Portland, Oregon; ten years later, she created this blog. Write for Wine focuses on the fine wines of Washington state, with occasional posts about other northwest wine regions (Oregon and B.C.), California, ANZ and Bordeaux. A former national journalist in Canada, Margot has been a Washington wine enthusiast since moving to Seattle in 1999. Her motto: “It’s wine o’clock somewhere.”