Washington Wine of the Week – Selections for Fall, 2021

For the week of October 10, 2021: Valdemar Estates 2020 Columbia Valley Roussanne – When winemaker Marie-Eve Gilla “unretired” after an amazing run at Forgeron Cellars to join Valdemar in 2018, she resumed her mastery of varietals such as Chardonnay and Roussanne. This selection is another one of her incredible white wines; it’s a sensory delight and absolutely perfect for sipping and savoring. Aromas and flavors of tropical fruits, Asian pear, and banana-nut bread fill the glass, with a lengthy finish that’s both round and slightly textured. It pairs nicely with Tortilla de Patatas (a combination of onions and potatoes poached in olive oil), which just so happens to be on the winery’s current tapas menu.

For the week of October 3, 2021: Dunham Cellars 2018 Lewis Vineyard Riesling – This stunning Riesling from the Walla Walla winery shows how beautiful this white varietal can be after a few years of aging. Nectarine, Bartlett pear, honeydew melon, and lychee fruit predominate, with great acidity that meshes perfectly with the 1.8% residual sugar content to give you a crisp, yet juicy finish. This wine could easily pair with just about anything on your charcuterie plate, from creamy to well-aged cheeses or prosciutto to spicy salami. Nicely priced at only around $20 a bottle and a must-try for any Washington Riesling lover.

David Volmut of Wind Rose Cellars

For the week of September 26, 2021: Wind Rose Cellars 2016 Hunters Red – Winemaker David Volmut specializes in Italian varietals, but he’s also crafting some excellent wines using grapes with Spanish and French origins. For this selection, he blended a base of 76% Grenache with Syrah and a touch of Cabernet Sauvignon. The results are a complex, layered, and food-worthy wine that earned him a 95-point score and Double Gold honors at the 2021 Bellingham Northwest Wine Judged Competition.

Grenache is clearly the star in the opening act, with generous bright red currant and red berries up front with the Syrah and Cab adding a second stanza of dark plum fruit along with touches of cedar, toasted almond, and a whisper of smokiness on the finish. Try it with duck, veal or pork tenderloin. Wind Rose Cellars’ tasting room is in the town of Sequim, located on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula.

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