Amazing Wine from Hard Row to Hoe

Hard Row to HoeHard Row to Hoe has been one of our favorite Washington wineries for years. If you ever get a chance to visit their tasting room in Lake Chelan Valley, take it! We first visited in 2016, and were delighted to go back this past summer.

First of all, the name of the winery itself has two meanings — one obviously related to vineyard management; the other is racy! For the full story, see our 2016 post. Above all, Hard Row to Hoe makes really good wine.

During our recent visit, co-owner and winemaker Judy Phelps poured many of her winning wines, whose names reflect those racy stories.
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Drinking and Eating Media Tour in Whatcom County

A couple of weeks ago, we attended a Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism Media Tour in conjunction with the Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival. We had a wonderful time! And even though we’ve lived in the area for more than four years now, we found new places where we will definitely return.

The highlights: The Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival; a Washington wine dinner at B-Town Kitchen at Four Points by Sheraton Bellingham; a tour and flights at Twin Sisters Brewery and Beer Garden; wine tastings at Samson Estates Winery and Dynasty Cellars; and a delicious lunch and whiskey cocktails at 9 Restaurant at North Bellingham Golf Course.

In addition, other tour stops included Cosmos Bistro for a tasty breakfast; Bellingham Farmers Market (loved the dumplings at Dumpling Girls booth, pictured right); Waypoint Park Tour (one of the first tangible signs of the city’s waterfront redevelopment of the former Georgia-Pacific paper mill site); historic Hotel Leo (formerly known as Hotel Leopold, and transitioning to a boutique 31-room new hotel and 61-unit apartment building); Good Time Girls Walking Tour and Cloud Mountain Farm (whose grapes are pictured above).

Here are the highlights.

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Successful Succession

On a recent trip to Lake Chelan, we met Brock Lindsay, winemaker and co-owner with his wife Erica of Succession Wines. We enjoyed talking to Brock, loved his wines and quickly decided that Succession Wines is one to watch.

And then we discovered that the smart guys at Wine Press Northwest said the same thing … one year ago! In 2018, they also called Brock a rising star. So we are a bit late to the party but big fans now!

We were also delighted to see Brock again, meet Erica, and taste Succession Wines at the Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival on August 10, and at the Auction of Washington Wines picnic in Woodinville on Aug. 15. Please check our Instagram @writeforwine for photos from both events (and we’d love it if you would follow us too). Continue reading

Summer Sippers and BBQ Reds

Oh summer! The time of crisp white wine or refreshing rosé during sultry warm afternoons or evenings on the deck or patio, or at the lake, ocean or pool. The time of rich reds at barbecues with family and friends. And the wines that pair well with a celebratory toast to Independence Day.

Here are some of our favorite whites and rosés to sip with a summer salad, or seafood such as prawns, scallops, sushi, crab or halibut. Or you can simply drink pink without food, watching the sunset reflected in its pretty color. In addition, here are some beautiful reds to pour at your BBQ.

There are so many wonderful wines to explore this summer. But we had to keep our lists short. As a result, these represent only wines that we have tasted in recent months, either at tasting rooms, events or in samples sent to us by wineries. Specifically, these wines are from Washington state, Oregon, California, New Zealand and Italy.

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