As WA Wine Month winds down, we thought it would be fun to look back on some of the bottles of great juice we’ve enjoyed in the last few weeks. Most importantly, we celebrate WA Wine every month. But during August, there are even more reasons to rejoice. For example, many wineries, restaurants, bars and wine shops are holding special “WAugust” promotions and discounts. Find details at the list of WA Wine events for the last week in August. Meanwhile, here is a roundup of excellent WA wine in our glasses recently.
WA Wine: Saviah Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
This is a great example of a rich and elegant Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon. We’ve appreciated Saviah Cellars Cab Sauv for years, and the 2018 vintage is no exception. The nose opens with licorice, dark chocolate, black cherry and graphite aromas, with hints of vanilla. Next comes flavors of blackberries, more black cherries and plums, and more chocolate notes on the finish. To us, Saviah has it all – magnificent wine, a great location and friendly, knowledgeable people who know how to take care of you. And let’s not forget layers and layers of funk – the wine is funky, and then there’s Funk Vineyard. And last but not least, the skilled winemaker, Richard Funk, who crafts outstanding wines, year after year.
WT Vintners Stoney Vine Vineyard Syrah 2015
This Syrah paired perfectly with our BBQ steak dinner. As expected from a Rocks District Syrah, we found aromas of funk, wet stone, mushrooms, olives and smoked meat. Seven years of age bring intense flavors of umami, more mushrooms and olives, plus blueberries and blood orange zest. As the name declares, the soil of Stoney Vine Vineyard is very stoney. Specifically, the soils are an ancient alluvial fan of river-tumbled basalt cobblestones formed by the Walla Walla River.
Two Vintners Some Days Are Stones Syrah 2015
The grapes for this amazing Syrah come from Stoney Vine Vineyard as well. This wine also exhibits the earthy, funky, savory characteristics that Rocks Syrah is known for, with dark fruits, smoked meats, black olives, bacon fat, gravel and more. At seven years old, this is the best Some Days are Stones Syrah we’ve tasted. And we have been drinking this incredible Syrah for years.
Block Wines Starside Cabernet Sauvignon 2020
We opened a bottle of Block Wines Starside Cabernet Sauvignon 2020, after decanting it for a few hours. It is very approachable now but we think we’ll cellar the few bottles we have left, so we can see how this standout young Cab evolves over time. For now, Starside is complex, structured and balanced, featuring fruit flavors of black currants, red cherries, blackberries and plums, with earthy, herbal and savory notes, laced with minerality.
WA Wine: L’Ecole 41 Alder Ridge Vineyard Grenache Rosé 2020
What better bottle to enjoy on a warm summer evening on the deck? With two years on it, L’Ecole 2020 Grenache Rosé is refreshing, clean and crisp with bright acidity, after being fermented in stainless steel tanks. As you can see, it’s a classic lightly colored Provence-style Rosé. And it is simply delicious. Aromas of strawberries, raspberries and watermelon lead into beautiful flavors of orange peel, pomegranate and juicy strawberries. Cheers to talented winemaker Marcus Rafanelli.
Fall Line Cirque Yakima Valley 2018
This is an impressive, elegant, structured and stylish wine from winemaker Tim Sorenson, whom we have known since he launched the winery in 2004 in Seattle. Fall Line Cirque 2018 blends 73% Cabernet Franc with almost equal parts of Merlot (15%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (12%). Cherry and other red fruit aromas give way to flavors of black fruit, licorice, graphite and dark chocolate. When we first tasted Cirque 2017, we knew that we’d continue to purchase this stellar blend.
Block Wines In the Hall of the Mountain Queen 2008
Above all, Full Pull’s Block Wines reserves their proprietary “In the Hall of the Mountain Queen” label for “exceptional opportunities from Red Mountain.” The bottle label says Red Mountain Red Wine, but this is actually 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. This 2008 is drinking beautifully right now. We could smell the gorgeous aromas as we poured the inky black-red wine into our glasses. Velvety, textured flavors of black fruit are backed by spices, and savory and earthy notes. This wine is a perfectly-aged Cab, with the power and structure that exemplifies Red Mountain.
Covington Cellars Rough House 2014
Covington Cellars 2014 Rough House is a lovely blend of 53% Cab Franc and 47% Merlot, crafted by talented winemaker Morgan Lee. Rough House is Covington’s signature Bordeaux-style blend, named after co-owner David Lawson’s Naval Reserve Unit. The back label notes the wine is “a tribute to those who serve, and who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.” This is our third bottle of this vintage, which we’ve opened over the last couple of years. It’s drinking very well now.
Summary: Celebrate WA Wine
In conclusion, there’s one week left in Washington Wine Month, so please make the most of it! Of course, we do the honors every month. And don’t forget to check out those promotions and discounts while they’re still available. Cheers to Washington wine!
Margot and Dave