Thanks for Great Washington State Wine

Better late than never, it’s time to share the glorious Washington state wines we enjoyed over the Thanksgiving weekend. Where to start?

On Thanksgiving Eve — that would be the night before Thanksgiving — we celebrated the start of the excellent long weekend with two of our favorite Merlots, both from Woodhouse Family Cellars: 2005 Kennedy Shah Merlot and 2004 Maghee Cellars Merlot. They’re very different, particularly in side-by-side tastings: the Kennedy Shah Merlot is medium weight “with raspberries, blueberries, smoky earth and spice on the nose and palate,” while the Maghee is more robust with “succulent rich black cherry fruit, full round soft mouth filling tannins and a smooth lingering finish.” We love them both!

On Thanksgiving Day, we began with Gilbert Cellars 2006 Estate Claret and then moved to Gilbert’s 2005 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. The Claret is a smooth blend of Bordeaux varieties from Washington state’s Wahluke slopes. The Cab is juicy, aromatic and rich.  Both wines enhanced the appetizers, delicious turkey and side dishes that were too many to name here!

The day after Thanksgiving, we were blessed with a visit from my father who lives in Vancouver (B.C.) Although he hasn’t quite developed the palate of my sister, my nephew, Dave or me, he still enjoyed the pre-dinner Three Rivers 2005 Meritage Red — possibly because this fine blend contains 12% Petit Verdot. With dinner, we sipped on another bottle of Gilbert Cellars 2005 Estate Cab, which we highly recommend.

We took a night off to recuperate from all the great food and wine, but on Sunday night we toasted the wonderful weekend with a glass of Saviah Cellars 2006 Jack. This Merlot, blended with 6% Cab Sauv, 4% Cab Franc and 2% Syrah, was Dave’s drink of choice when we were regulars at Vino Bello.  We haven’t been able to get there lately unfortunately, but we’ll be sure to stop by again to see Michele and the gang before the year is up.

Wow, think about that – with Thanksgiving behind us, it’s almost time for the holidays and 2009!


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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.”