Haunting beer and wineEach year, we celebrate Halloween by recalling the wines we sampled this past year that continued to haunt us long after the last sip. This year we are correcting the error of not including beer in the list of Washington beverages that continue to haunt us. The list includes Washington beer and wine from barrel, new releases and the depth of the cellar.

 Washington Beer

If you don’t know enough French to recognize the La Petit Mort name, take the time to look it up in Wikipedia because it is aptly named. This beer stops you in your tracks. Before you know it excited utterances escape your lips followed by a huge smile. Friends who do not like “beer” enjoy this one. Friends who do like beer are dismayed to hear that this is a limited production and so popular that Black Raven does not fill growlers to take home. If you want to experience La Petit Mort you have to make it to the brewery and be ready for the excited utterances to happen in public. Released each year on Bastille Day, portion of La Petit Mort are placed in bourbon barrels for aging. The Bourbon Barrel aged La Petite Mort is released in time for the holidays.
If you are looking for a reason to go to a beer fest, it is the delcious beers that brewers craft specially for these events. Ed and I fought over the glass of Ginger Peach Blonde Ale  in the Bodacious Beverage flight at Beveridge Place during Seattle Beer Week.  Thank goodness this delicious beer made another appearance at the Washington Brewers fest where Ed could get his fill!
This Washington beer was so unique, we have only found it on the Buzz Cart during the Washington Brewers Festival.This is the ultimate taco beer but I want to savor this beer with Thai food or just on its own.

Are you listening Matt? More of this yummy spicy Garlic Chile Hefeweizen please!

The official Seattle Beer Week 2011 beer, this beer is still available and well worth seeking out. Made with Falconer Flight hops, the Decompression Ale has enough hop character to make a hop head rejoice. Exceptional balance ensures that this beer is a lot more than just the stellar hop profile.

Washington Wine

Nancy remembers

Recently I had a chance to do a barrel tasting at Davenport Cellars. A barrel of Merlot from Sheridan Vineyard was so amazing, I could still taste the wine when I went to bed that night, flirting with my lips like a first kiss. That kind of barrel tasting is like going on a first date. Keeping my interest piqued, leaving me eager for our next encounter.

Based on taste trial Jeff and Sheila Jirka have decided this barrel will stand alone and be available to wine club members upon release.

Vivian recalls

Friends gathered to prepare and share dinner at the home of a Walter Dacon wine club member who lives in the countryside 8 miles from the winery. With Migas made from eggs laid just that morning, corn tortillas fresh from the local tortilla factory, green salad with stone fruit, and flour tortillas made fresh by a guest who was taught by a Jicarilla Indian in New Mexico, I poured the 2007 and 2008 Rousanne from our hostess’ cellar. The pairing and the vintage comparison were amazing! So much so, that as soon as I was back in cell phone range I called Ann and Andy Lloyd at the winery and begged them to dig through their library for past vintages. Soon there will be a pairing dinner featuring 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 Walter Dacon Rousanne. After the upcoming dinner this wine truly will be haunting as it is no longer made.

The  Patterson Cellars Forbidden Red is the intriguing combination of 32% Touriga, 21% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Primitivo, 15% Cabernet Franc, 14% Mouvedre. Dawn selected the Forbidden Red as her Pick of the Week at Wine World (sponsor) last winter. Ed kept on saying he was going to write up this wine but kept getting distracted by the taste.  Jonathan complained he couldn’t keep the wine in his cellar, it was too popular at home.

John and Stephanie when will the next Forbidden Red be released.

You probably don’t usually think of Gewurtztraminer or even of Washington wine when you think of sparking wines. The Treveri Cellars Sparkling Gewurtztraminer was one of our biggest surprises of the year. All of us love this spicy sparkler.
This is the first estate fruit for the winery formerly known as Grand Reve. This is an incredibly voluptuous Force Majeure Viognier with an entrancing mineral-fruit-acid balance. Lovely mouthfeel on this medium bodied Viognier. If you are looking for old world restraint and elegance on New World fruit, look no further than this Viognier.  But, you will have to act first, this Washington wine won’t be officially released until this weekend but they are almost all allocated.
During the Wines of Washington Barrel Picnic and Auction, Jon was serving samples of this beautiful grenache. With almost 20 different barrels of wine to taste on bid on, it was the Maison Blue Grenache that was getting the most buzz.  It is the bright fruit, restrained but elegant that I remember months later. Often barrel samples can be tight and have sharp edges but you didn’t have to search for the potential in this wine. I can’t wait until this gorgeous Greanche is released!