First, I have have been reading the Top 100 lists of 2014 in various magazines, the Drunken Cyclist (a fine Word Press wine blogger) just posted his Top 10 and they are doozies! So you would think I could come up with some list of my own from the many tastings of 2014.
Well heck! IF I was an organized wine-taster/writer or even half as consistent as my brother bloggers in this area; I could pop this list right out at ya. But I’m not.
Not to get too personal, but this year was an emotional, sometimes stress filled rollercoaster. A few family events of loss, a day job that was sucking all my energy, all contributed to draining my avenue to tap into my creativity. Oh, I was still doing my wine events, volunteering and tasting wines, but I just couldn’t find the time to ” still my mind ” and write about them. That created even more stress.
So 2015 will be the re-launch of my efforts to expose you to what I think is delightful in my Wine Life and hope to get you to try some of the local vintages from Washington state.
I started this Wine writing adventure in an effort to capture moments and wine scenes that I want to keep in my memory for the future. I also want to share the Pacific Northwest and wines that are truly becoming and evolving into notable world class wines that are making their way onto reviewers lists, and even some top 100 lists.
I spoke with a fellow recently who moved to Vashon Island straight from New York City, a Wall Streeter that has lived all over the world. If you are from the Northwest, you know about Vashon Island. It is beautiful place, a small island that is green, tree-filled, and apparently overrun by deer. Housing is a little more reasonable considering Seattle proper is only a short ferry ride away.
However, those 15 minutes are like traveling through another dimension, a portal where life is ‘different’, and city folk are not really appreciated. In the past, they have been known as an arts community, a bit of a pot culture, and felons have been known to tuck in and hide there. This is a citizenry that relish their ‘remote time’. The best way to give you a clue is their bumper sticker worn proudly on their bent bumpers – KEEP VASHON WEIRD.
I digress with all of this to point out that there are many interesting and intriguing spaces in the Pacific Northwest. When I asked Mr. Wall Streeter about the major shift in his lifestyle especially moving to Vashon, he said , almost in a whisper -“East Coasters do not know a thing about the Pacific Northwest” . And to paraphrase the rest of his thought, when people from the East speak about the West, it’s California, they know about that. He has found a bit of paradise in our hidden northwest corner of the US map and is happy he found an island home that is still underdeveloped and not gentrified.
So I would like to introduce some of these hidden places, and also, to showcase Washington wineries. Vashon has a couple of them as well, so in the future I will be traveling across the water to that area and give you a peek at the beauty and introduce you to the winemakers that make some pretty spectacular wines.
So my top ten list, don’t have it, but I can say my top wine of the Christmas season that made it onto my table:
Pepperbridge 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon. $60. A real winner from Walla Walla. The tasting notes talk all about the cloves, the coffee, black cherry and vanilla. And I concur. Got a chance to taste this ON Christmas Eve, one of the few Woodinville Wine warehouse tasting room open that day; and we all agreed it was well worth the trip, and it served well as a counterpoint to my gigantic (over sized really) beef wellington. The finish lingered and and gave and gave and we all just listed on our sides at the table with half closed eyes in appreciation. Really lovely.