Thursday, April 17, 2008

Taking the "Where?" Out of Buying Washington Wine

Does anyone else remember WBW #34? It was hosted by Catie, the Wild Walla Walla Wine Woman and we were asked to find a Washington Cabernet to drink for the event. As a special request, Catie suggested we try to find something NOT made by Chateau Ste. Michelle--a great producer, to be sure, but she wanted us to experience a wider range of Washington State choices.

I went to four stores, came up empty, and ended up drinking Chateau Ste. Michelle. I'm all for Washington wines, but where are you supposed to find them in Southern California?

The Wild Walla Walla Wine Woman wants you to drink Washington wine. And to help you, she's opened up her own online wine store with a terrific choice of bottles to tempt your tastebuds. I had my first shopping experience with her just a few weeks ago, and though I haven't tried any of the wines yet, I wanted to urge you to go and see what Catie has on her virtual shelves.

I checked out with some Lemberger from College Cellars, an Austrian grape variety that is widely planted in Washington state. Also in my basket were a Sauvignon Blanc with a great story behind it from Couvillion, and a dessert wine from Forgeron made with Gewurztraminer. I bought six bottles in all (full haul pictured at left), and the best part was not a single bottle cost more than $20. For those of you who are interested in a splurge wine, I'd suggest you consider one of the great Washington Cabernets that Catie has in stock, from wineries such as Couvillion, DaMa, and Garrison Creek. Click here for details on all the wines that are available. If you spend more than $100, you will get a free Wild Walla Walla Woman corkscrew made by Rialto. I love mine--it's sturdy enough that I seriously considered using it for a small home improvement project, and it is compact enough to pack in your picnic basket this summer.

Thanks to Catie for providing those of us who don't live in Washington state with such a great resource for its wines. I'll be updating you on these bottles after they've settled down a bit from their shipping over the next few weeks. Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

So far, I've gotten a ton of use from my corkscrew (my favorite one at the moment) and I loved the Walldeaux. Can't wait to try the Merlot and Lemberger which were also a part of my order.

wild walla walla wine woman said...

I know what you mean about the corkscrew. Everyone raves about it! In fact, a neighbor just left a few minutes ago to buy one for his sister. He loves his so much and said he is hooked on using the double-lever.

A note about the College Cellars Lemberger '05: I have just a few bottles left and the Cellars just sold out. The 2006 & '07 will eventually be released, but the 07 will be the very last every made by Stan, my "Wine Guru" who helped put Lemberger on the Washington State map.

Many thanks Dr. Debs!

Dr. Debs said...

Hello, Jill and Catie! I'm still loving my corkscrew, and better yet--I'm planning to use it on that Lemberger very soon.

Director, Lab Outreach said...

Per "settling down", you've just provided a Eureka! moment! A burst of inspiration for a new experiment in the Lab regarding shipping & settling! At a recent Pinot event in New Zealand, I know they drove a case of wine to the event a month in advance to let settle, and then delivered another case of the same wine on the day of the event, and tasted both side by side and blind. Results were mixed and inconclusive, but leaned toward there might be something to this settling thing. We could certainly exploit Catie's new venture for a local version of the test if she's willing to ship one now and another in a month's time.

Btw, very much enjoyed your "futurist" speculation about the next big grape. It's a very good parlor game, but I have to wonder whether the game hasn't changed. Could be less about varietal and more about region. Meaning, I would vote for old favorites coming from the Balkans.