Saviah Cellars – making friends Washington to Montana

Saviah Cellars is a fun place to stop for a little wine tasting. The day we stopped in, Rich Funk, the winemaker, was pouring tastes. He was friendly and told us the story of how he and his wife, Anita (his college sweetheart) came from Montana State University and ended up making wine in the Walla Walla Valley. It is a great story and I wouldn’t want to spoil it by telling it second hand.

The day we visited, the mobile bottling truck was there. Rich invited us to come back and watch the bottling process. They were producing a pallet of ready to ship wine in about 15 minutes – pretty amazing.

The tasting room is simple and clean. There is a brand new pond that Rich and his son had recently dug themselves. There is also a terrific statue of an eagle and salmon created by a friend in Montana. The family stays quite close to their roots with wines named after people and places they love – Big Sky Cuvee, Star Meadow white wine and The Jack – a terrific $15 Reisling or the number 1 skewed Merlot at QFC for $18 – Rich says this is a wine where their goal is to under promise and over deliver – it is the wine he says he uses to make friends.

Swiftwater Cellars is Just a Short Drive Away

After a recent trip to Walla Walla, we made a quick stop in Roslyn to visit Swiftwater Cellars located in the beautiful Suncadia Resort. Open about a year, this winery was built atop Coal Mine Number 9 and they have kept the coal mining history alive with their architecture and décor.

We enjoyed Swiftwater so much that we made a second trip to visit and spent a night at the Lodge at Suncadia nearby. It was hard to believe that a quick two day trip could feel like such a nice vacation. Only about 90 minutes from Seattle and yet we felt like we were a world away with the stress of everyday life just melting away. The Lodge also has a gorgeous Craftsmanship décor and includes a terrific bar, restaurant, rec facility and spa.

The destination seems perfect for events. The winery is even in the process of building a special building for brides because of the high demand for weddings. I like it so much that while I am not planning a wedding, I am thinking of getting my bookclub to go spend the night and enjoy dinner and a day of golfing…

Swiftwater Cellars is the beautiful winery located within the Suncadia Resort

Apex finds the perfect pairing of red wine and chocolate

OK call me a “Woman” – guilty as charged – two of my favorite flavors are red wine and chocolate.  Recently while visiting the Apex at Alderridge tasting room in Woodinville, we had the opportunity to taste “Chocolate Shop”. It is a luscious dessert in a glass – silky and rich. This red wine infused with chocolate is yummy and fun and at $15 per bottle it makes a fun and inexpensive gift.

The Woodinville tasting room is large with comfortable leather sofas and chairs that entice you to linger while you enjoying your wine. They offer a variety of picnic-type food. I liked the cheese plate. They also have some interesting items in their gift shop – oils and vinegars, books, etc.

Apex is definitely a fun stop on your wine tasting tour.

Yummy for dessert

Brown Box Wine – a great party option


Brown Box comes in several varieties

On a recent visit to Silver Lake Winery’s tasting room in Woodinville, we happened upon a novel idea – Brown Box Wine. The “brown box” holds the equivilent of 4 bottles of wine for $18.99. Truly a party box! They offer Cabernet, Merlot, Reisling and Chardonnay. The Chardonnay wone a double gold at the Seattle Wine Awards.

While the wines were not offered for tasting the day we visited – I thought it was an intriguing idea and worth mentioning. i would love to hear from someone who has tried this wine.

Waterbrook is a “sure thing” for wine tasters

Emily and Gretchen make the experience at Waterbrook

If you are out tasting and want a “sure thing”one of the nicest tasting rooms in the Walla Walla area can be found at Waterbrook. It is a gorgeous facility that is always fun to visit for a tasting. Personally, I prefer their reserve wines – and their events are fabulous!!  Last year we attended “Unstrung”.  It included a gourmet box dinner – delicious – and little tableaus that included a harpist, opera singer (which I think was impromptu) as well as little trios and quartets scattered around the grounds. It was wonderful fun and we are looking forward to it again this year.

There are always great events such as an upcoming Glass Blowing Wine Weekend.

If you stop by the winery – be sure to say “Hi” to Gretchen and Emily. They are absolutely going to make sure you have a wonderful time and get to taste some delicious wine and have the opportunity to ask questions.

Chateau Ste Michelle’s Druthers

I had the opportunity to attend the Chateau Ste Michelle members release last week (Thank you Steve). I  am big fan  of the Chateau Ste Michelle concert series, but have not tasted their wines recently. The winery is gorgeous and they have a wonderful tour. Whenever we have wine tasting newbies with us we always suggest a visit to  Chateau Ste Michelle . This event was low-key and fun.  We also tasted some very yummy reds. The real stand out for me was Druthers 2008. A rich dense wine that I am sure can be cellared for a while and really mellow out. At $80 a bottle, it is a special occasion wine, but having a couple of bottles in the cellar makes sense.I was told that the name came from the winemaker saying if he had his “druthers” he would create this wine. I love that!

Speaking of cellars – ours is almost done. I have been banned from posting photos until it is 100% – but may sneak a couple anyway.

Obelisco Scores 91 Points!

Congratulations to Obelisco on their pick of the day:
May. 26, 2011 OBELISCO Red Mountain 2008 Red Wine (90 points, $30) (91 points Enthusiast)
Vibrant, supple and distinctive for its meaty, creamy overtones around a core of gentle plum and spice, lingering seductively. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Malbec. Drink now through 2015. 1,264 cases made.—Harvey Steiman
Of course we already knew that -we had my husband’s 50th birthday party at the tasting room so all of our friends could enjoy this yummy wine.