March is Washington Wine Month. If you were looking for an excuse to explore the wonderful world of Washington wine, now is your chance. Following is a smattering of some of our favorites. Enjoy!
2014 Buty Merlot & Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley ($41.99)
“Supple, broad and expressive, layering rose petal—accented cherry and plum flavors against powdery tannins, finishing with sleekness and harmony. Drink now through 2024. 325 cases made.” –Wine Spectator, 92-points.
2014 Mark Ryan Winery ‘The Dissident’ Red Columbia Valley ($34.99)
“The entry-level Bordeaux blend (which is as good as many estate top wines) is the 2014 The Dissident, and it will be another great value in 2014. My notes start with ‘screaming deal’ and it shows lots of Cabernet character (cassis, lead pencil, hints of flowers), medium to full-bodied richness, superb purity and a great finish. Buy it by the case.” –Wine Advocate, 91-93 points.
2012 Andrew Will Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley ($32.69)
Winemaker Chris Camarda is recognized as one of the top producers of Cabernet Franc wines in this country. An ample wine that delivers a mouthful of crushed red berries and floral notes. A balanced and precise wine, it comes together seamlessly with refined tannins and a lingering finish. –Winemaker Notes
2013 Avennia Gravura Red Blend Columbia Valley ($32.69)
“Entry level Gravura. 47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc. Classic notes of leafy herbs, chocolate, tobacco leaf, black currants and earth. This medium to full-bodied, rounded and downright sexy. 2013 has terrific mid-palate depth, supple tannin and an already hard to resist style. One of the rising stars in the wine world, winemaker Chris Peterson continues to make incredible wines under his Avennia label. Drink 2016-2024.” –Wine Advocate, 92-points.
2013 Maison Bleue Metis Red Columbia Valley ($19.99)
“This wine is a blend of 45% Grenache, 37% Syrah and 18% Mourvèdre, coming from Boushey, Pepper Bridge, Olsen and Minnick vineyards. The aromas pop with notes of clove, orange peel, black pepper, funk and red and blue berries. The palate is lithe, pure and focused, with a pleasing mouthfeel and sense of balance to the citrus and blue-fruit flavors.” -Sean Sullivan, 90-points.
2014 Lobo Hills Right Bank Blend Red Wine Columbia Valley ($18.69)
“The 2014 Right Bank Blend is 83% Merlot, 11% Malbec and 6% Cabernet Franc. This wine is aged in mostly neutral oak and delivers unadorned fruit rounded by soft wood tannin. Consume 2019 through 2034. Production: 400 cases. Available: 300.” –Winemaker notes.
2014 Ryan Patrick Rock Island Red Columbia Valley ($14.99)
“Stylistically, we are looking for dark, rich and ripe flavors for this blend. We source fruit from vineyards throughout the Columbia Valley with bold and concentrated characteristics, creating the desirable style of our Rock Island Red. 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Syrah, 15% Merlot, 4% Primitivo.” – Jeremy Santo, winemaker.
2015 DeLille Cellars “Chaleur Estate” Blanc Columbia Valley ($35.99)
“Aromas of tropical fruits, lemon oil, fig and honeysuckle. Very sexy, complex and smooth on the palate, with expressive flavors of citrus fruits, honey, wild herbs and flowers. Finishes with outstanding subtle length and thrust. The Sauvignon Blanc from Sagemoor, reportedly the oldest planting of this variety in the state, makes up a good percentage of this wine.” -Stephen Tanzer, 93-points.
2015 Thurston Wolfe PGV (Pinot Gris-Viognier) Columbia Valley ($12.99)
“Our 2015 PGV is a unique blend of 65% Pinot Gris and 35% Viognier, creating a rare wine with intense fruit aromas and a rich, crisp finish.” –Winemaker notes.
2015 Barnard Griffin Chardonnay Columbia Valley ($10.59)
“Our 2015 Chardonnay opens with vibrant pear, peach and pineapple flavors highlighted by lemon zest and citrus notes. Very crisp and refreshing! A touch of lime and oak spice chimes in on the long finish. A great accompaniment to a broad range of food choices.” –Winemaker notes.
Kenneth Benner, a Seattle area native, is a trained chef and has worked in such restaurants as Barbacoa, B.O.K.A. Kitchen + Bar, and Dahlia Lounge. Ken is the wine buyer at Leschi Market. He has a passion for learning, a meticulous palate, and a tenacity for searching out the best for his customers while offering some of the most highly coveted wines in the area. His wine column is intended to inspire and explore new choices in wine, learn about wine with his readers, and share his knowledge and experiences in the wine world. Check out the latest at www.LeschiMarket.com or request to be added to email updates or send questions, comments, or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org and follow the wine department directly on twitter at twitter.com/leschimarket.