top 10 northwest wines of the month(s)

Friday, September 30, 2011

Returning to a popular, monthly feature; this time around I’m going back two months, as the blog was ‘en vacances’ in August. Here is the new list (ranked in order) from all the Oregon and Washington wines tasted in July and August.

It's based upon both price and score – the 10 wines listed will all be very high scoring, but the ultimate order also reflects the price. A less-expensive wine with a score comparable to a more expensive wine will have a higher ranking. Somewhat arbitrarily, I have elected to list just one wine per winery. So some of these wineries have other wines that could have been included, but the one listed is the top scorer.

A new wrinkle – the last two wines on the list (#9 and #10 for you bean counters) are the highest-scoring wines with a retail price of $10 or less.

One practical reason to publish this list monthly is that so many of these wines are from boutique producers and will have a very brief window of availability. In fact, some may be on closed mailing lists. That can be frustrating, but anyone who trolls the online auction sites knows that just about anything from anyone is for sale – at a price. This is a heads up on what to grab quickly.

Full reviews and scores will appear in an upcoming issue of the Wine Enthusiast.

Paul G's Top 10 Northwest Wines of the Month

Charles Smith 2008 Royal City Syrah; $140
An Amaro-like mix of bitters and herbs; this is exceptionally dense and dark. The fruit is a grace note; the big flavors come from herb, earth, rock, barrel and more.

Adelsheim 2009 Nicholas Vineyard Pinot Noir; $90
The best of a great flight of single vineyard 2009 Pinots from Adelsheim. Power-packed with dense, rich flavors, nuanced with exotic spices and black tea.

Otis Kenyon 2008 Stellar Vineyard Syrah; $38
A cellar-worthy effort, complex and riveting, with berries and citrus, juicy and tart, that cling to the palate and pull through to a lingering finish.

ArborBrook Vineyards 2008 Sydney Sémillon; $28/375
Washington's Klipsun Vineyard is the source for this thoroughly delicious, Sauterne-style dessert wine.

Chateau Ste. Michelle 2008 Cold Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon; $28
Tight, dense, and cassis-laden, with an appropriate hint of herb.

Coeur d’Alene Cellars 2007 Alder Ridge Vineyard Syrah; $40
This striking Syrah opens with intense aromas of berry, cherry and cassis fruit; then moves into compelling barrel scents and flavors.

Rex Hill 2008 Jacob-Hart Vineyard Pinot Noir; $65
Complex and detailed – English Breakfast tea, cherry liqueur, moist loam, dried leaf, and highlights of cinnamon apple pie.

O•S Winery 2010 Champoux Vineyard Riesling; $15
This single vineyard Riesling offers deep flavors of Meyer lemon, English breakfast tea, and tangy stone fruits.

Pacific Rim 2010 Riesling; $10
Fruity and crisply defined, this has excellent grip and a tongue-pleasing mix of citrus, orange liqueur, and a bit of caramel apple.

Gordon Brothers 2009 Chardonnay; $10
Done in a dark gold, oily, buttery, oaky style, with green and yellow apple fruit that manages to cut through.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comment is awaiting moderation and will be posted ASAP. Thanks!