Dinner at Bistecca Italian Steakhouse

April 29th, 2006

I’ll be moderating a six-course dinner at Bellingham’s Bistecca Restaurant featuring wines from Thurston Wolfe Winery in Prosser, Washington.

Thurston Wolfe has come out with some awesome wines and I think you’re really going to be impressed with how well they’re drinking right now.

The event gets underway at 6:30 pm and is located at 4156 Meridian in Bellingham next to the Holiday Inn Express. Price is $59 per person with tax and gratuity extra.

Phone (360) 647-1060 for additional information and to confirm your reservations.

Here is the menu for the evening:

Course 1 2005 Pinot Gris/Viognier served with seared scallops & pancetta in pastry with fried leeks, Roma tomatoes and light wine butter sauce.

Course 2 2005 Rosato Rose served with baby spinach salad topped with toasted hazelnuts, fresh strawberries and balsamic glace.

Course 3 2004 Lemberger served with marinated pork loin over butternut squash ravioli and a smoked golden tomato sauce.

Course 4 2003 Sangiovese served with slow roasted leg of lamb with grilled eggplant and garlic/rosemary jus.

Course 5 2004 Petit Sirah served with lavender Anna potatoes, peppered zucchini and a black currant veal sauce.

Course 6 2004 Orange Muscat served with Curacao creme brule with burnt coriander sugar.

StarSail Cruises Combines San Juan Islands Tour with Winery Visits

April 24th, 2006

Imagine cruising the San Juan Islands on a beautiful summers day while enjoying a glass of wine and stopping along the way to visit wineries in and around the islands. Thanks to StarSail Cruises, a Redmond-based charter company, you can make this dreamlike scenario a reality.

On June 22, wine lovers can depart from Bellingham for a four-day cruise aboard the 160 foot Schooner Zodiac, which can accommodate up to 24 passengers. The cruise will tour the San Juan Islands and include stops at two island wineries – San Juan Vineyards and Lopez Island Vineyards – as well as Port Townsend’s Sorenson Cellars and FairWinds Winery, before wrapping up at Mount Baker Vineyards.

This is the inaugural run for the northwest wine tour, which will be hosted by Boudreaux Cellars from Leavenworth. Representatives from Boudreaux will travel with passengers to lead the cruise, answer questions and provide an onboard tasting of their own wines. Boudreaux is developing a reputation for producing ultra-premium wines, so having them along for the cruise is an added bonus.

The price of $550.00 per person includes accommodations and meals aboard the schooner, transportation to the wineries and tours and tastings at each winery. In other words, all you have to do is hop aboard, relax, and be pampered. Not a bad way to spend a four-day stretch this summer.

I think this is a great opportunity to experience close-to-home wineries and the beauty of the San Juans all in one terrific getaway package. For more information, phone Sherry Krivosheev at (877) 831-7427 or visit www.starsailcruises.com.

Wine Class at BTC

April 22nd, 2006

2:30 to 4:30 pm – Wines From Down Under. Sample and learn about wines from Australia and New Zealand. Click on the Wine Classes Page for more information.

Great Cabernets Coming from Washington State

April 17th, 2006

Washington State continues to produce some truly amazing Cabernet Sauvignon. The grape may still trail Merlot in terms of red wine production, but there’s no denying that Washington Cabernets have earned their place as some of the best in the world.

The quality of Cabernet is due in no small part to the ideal growing conditions in Eastern Washington. And as the vines mature and the technical skills of winemakers become more polished, you’re going to see even more improvement in the flavor intensity and character of these wines.

Here are a few Cabernets that I’ve recently tried and think you might enjoy:

2003 Silver Lake Winery (about $14): A nice “everyday” Columbia Valley Cabernet at an affordable price. Dense and chewy with plenty of cherry and berry flavors complemented by a toasty, vanilla-like finish.

2002 Thurston Wolfe Destiny Ridge Vineyard (about $20): An incredible Cabernet from the Horse Heaven Hills region in Eastern Washington. Deep and complex, massive black cherry and currant flavors, and a finish of chocolate and spice. Because of limited production, you’ll need to purchase this wine soon.

2003 Lost River Winery (about $23): The small winery from Mazama continues to impress with this tasty Columbia Valley Cabernet. Layers of raspberry, cherry and currant flavors melt into an elegant, velvety finish.

2003 Five Star Cellars (about $32): Another smash hit from the Walla Walla Valley. Fragrances of berry and vanilla lead to explosive dark fruit flavors and a long finish with hints of chocolate and pepper. Gold medal winner at the 2005 Tri-Cities Wine Festival.

Zinfandel

April 14th, 2006

Rosenblum Paso Robles 2004 (about $20): Another gorgeous California Zin surrounded with gobs of cherry, ultra-dark plum and blackberry flavors. There’s also plenty of spice on the finish along with just enough tannins to give the wine a bit of structure. Outstanding!

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