Success: Sip of Snoqualmie

Sip of Snoqualmie was a resounding success. As regular readers would expect, we loved the smooth 2004 Dussek from Woodhouse Family Cellars and the 2005 Syrah from Alexandria Nicole Cellars. In the category of “wines that are new to me,” the best wine of the night was Chandler Reach Vineyards 2004 Estate Parris Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.

This Chandler Reach Cab isn’t released yet, so don’t go rushing out to find it. But put it on your wish list – you won’t regret it. With its distinct aromas, this intense wine is already elegant and rich. I can’t wait to try it again when we head to eastern Washington in a few months.

Another new-to-me winery is Hightower Cellars, which will be another must-stop in eastern Washington. Hightower’s 2006 Merlot, their signature wine, is just simply lovely. In addition to its fine structure, I suspect I liked it so much because of the addition of 9% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Cab Franc.

Now don’t get me wrong — there were many other wines that we enjoyed at Sip of Snoqualmie and I will write about many of them in more detail in the weeks to come.

I also must mention the tasty appetizers, with a special shout out to Steve’s”Hot” Smoked Cheese & Salmon from Kauzlarich Products. The cheese is hot-smoked in an all western cedar smokehouse, and it was absolutely the best ever – smooth, creamy and oh-so smokey – and it paired marvellously with some of those luscious wines. And the salmon was fresh, moist and oh-so tasty – it comes from the mouth of the Campbell River, in my home province of British Columbia.

So cheers to the more than than 30 wineries in Washington that were represented at the fundraising event at the luxurious Snoqualmie Casino. The VIP afternoon tasting sold out in advance and the evening tasting sold out at the door. Proceeds directly support Encompass, an organization for children and families in the Snoqualmie Valley.