Better Move Quickly – Tickets on Sale at Seattle Wine & Food Experience

Wine Comments Off

It’s that time of year again — the Seattle Wine and Food Experience at Seattle Center Exhibition Hall. If you like good wine, beer and food – and seriously, who doesn’t? – mark your calendars for this delicious experience on Feb. 24, from 12-5 p.m.

In addition to the wonderful wines of Washington, our neighbors to the south, Oregon, are featured again this year. You can also tour a world of wine in one place, by heading to booths where you’ll find pours from California, Idaho, Italy, Spain, France and Israel.

Some of our Oregon favorites — Seven of HeartsErath Winery, Youngberg HillTroon and Willamette Valley Vineyards – will be side by side with our Washington friends from Barrage Cellars, Obelisco, Dunham Cellars and The Woodhouse Wine Estates, to name a few. And then there’s Watermill Winery, which straddles both states and offers some mighty fine wine.

You can find a full list of wineries that will be pouring, along with beer and cider, spirits, and coffee, in addition to information about numerous restaurants serving gourmet bites, at the Seattle Wine and Food Experience website. Tickets are $55.

In addition, this year’s featured experiences includes the Snoqualmie Casino Luxe Lounge, where you can “play” a hand or two at one of the classic gaming tables, listen to live music, enjoy a premium wine or craft beer and taste some of the signature dishes from their award-winning restaurants – Terra Vista, 12 Moons Asian Bistro and Sno Deli.

And it’s important to note – this is the fifth annual SWFE, which is testimony to the reputation and following this event, with its explosion of tastes, has generated in Seattle. 

We hope to see you there.

Cheers!

January is Barrage Month

Cab Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington wineries, Wine, Woodinville Comments Off

Halfway through January, we discovered it’s all about Barrage, baby! Barrage Cellars, that is.

Let me explain why.

In November, we stopped by (with our dog, Sir Winston) at the Barrage Cellars tasting room in Woodinville’s Wine Warehouse district, and fell in love all over again with Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc created by winemaker Kevin Correll.

We had a great time tasting some fine juice and catching up with Kevin and Rebecca, and walked away with quite a few bottles of more than one vintage of Barrage Cellars Double Barrel Cabernet Sauvignon and Outcast Cab Franc.

As a result, January has become Barrage Month at our house, as we opened some of the bottles. It is hard to cellar these very drinkable wines.

We are captivated with 2007 Double Barrel and the 2009 Outcast is simply superlative. These two wines are our favorite varietals these days, and Barrage Cellars is high on our list of must-haves.

This is not surprising — Barrage Cellars Outcast has made our list of favorite Cab Francs more than once — just try searching Write for Wine for Barrage Cellars. And it’s not just us – Seattle Magazine voted 2007 Outcast the best Cab Franc in Washington state in 2011, and Seattle Wine Awards gave Outcast a silver medal the same year.

But let me tell you, Kevin’s wines simply get better and better with each vintage. Every time we think we’ve tasted his best yet, he surprises us the following year with better yet.

Like many winemakers in Washington state, Kevin started making wine as a hobby in his garage; from there, he moved his craft to the barn. Put the two words barn and garage together – Bar+rage – and voila, Barrage Cellars was born.

But unlike many winemakers who blend different grapes together into one wine, Kevin prefers to blend wine with the same grape from different vineyards.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to stop by Barrage Cellars in Woodinville for Kevin’s red and white wines, make a point of it. You won’t be disappointed.

Sir Winston wants to go back too because Kevin and Rebecca love puppy dogs!

Cheers!

Ringing in 2013

Cabernet Sauvignon, Wine Comments Off

When you’re a wine enthusiast, you tend to have a lot of bottles of wine in your cellar. Many of them hold promises of a spectacular wine experience, and what better way to ring in a new year?

The problem, however, is finding just one bottle that best represents such a special occasion.

We talked about pulling two bottles of reds from our cellar, but there were simply too many excellent ones to choose. (Such a problem to have, eh?)

So first, we reduced the options by restricting the list to Cabernet Sauvignon. Then we limited it to the great juice produced in Washington state and some wine from Napa Valley, where Cab is King.

Believe it or not, the list was still big, so we decided to hold our unique version of a blind tasting. Sort of.

On one side of the counter, we placed several bottles of Washington state Cabernet Sauvignon; on the other, a few bottles of Napa Cab. We put each one in a wine bag, so we couldn’t see the labels, and chose one from each side.

Let’s keep this in perspective though – all the wine was highly rated, so we knew in advance we couldn’t lose!

And the winners were (drum roll please):

It was a complete coincidence that both bottles were the 2007 vintage. Interestingly, the Wine Spectator gave a grade “A” to the overall 2007 vintage in Washington state, while awarding 99 points to the overall 2007 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon vintage.

We’ve long been fans of Fidelitas wines produced by Charlie Hoppes and his team at Red Mountain, and we’ve been drinking wine from Grgich Hills for more years than I can remember (although not as far back as 1976, when Mike Grgich brought Napa Chardonnay to world acclaim at the famed Paris Tasting).

So we rang in 2013 with some marvelous Cabs, and wish you a healthy, happy and prosperous new year.

Cheers!