Friday, May 4 through Sunday, May 6 was Spring Release Weekend in Walla Walla. This is the time when many wineries officially release their new wines. It is also the time when some wineries open up for special events. Here's what I did that weekend.
On Friday morning, I drove over to the Airport District to visit Steve Wells' Time & Direction winery where I tasted the inaugural releases of a 2017 white, a 2017 rosé and a 2016 Syrah from the Frenchman Hills of the Royal Slope. The wines will be reviewed in the June issue of the Review of Washington Wines. Then I visited the Armstrong Family Winery's new tasting room on Main Street. The 2014 reds will be in the June issue.
The next day, I attended the annual Abeja and Leonetti Spring events. Reports on these will be in the June issue. In the afternoon, I stopped at The Walls for the new 2015 "Stanley Groovy" Red and Curiositas Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, to be reviewed in June. I also made stops at Foundry Vineyards (impressive 2014 reds) and Gramercy Cellars. In the evening, we went tp Corliss for the release of the 2013 Syrah and previews of upcoming vintages.
On Saturday evening, we went to Dunham Cellars's Winemakers Dinner in the barrel room, prepared by chefs Mauro Golmarvi of Assagio in Seattle and Andrae Bopp of AK's. Mauro and Connie are our next door neighbors and Andrae and Michelle live a quarter mile south of us. So it was great having a great dinner prepared by our neighbors. The menu and wines were wonderful. Roasted beets with 2015 Shirleu Mays Chardonnay. Wild greens, pear and apple salad with 2014 Trutina Red Blend. The entrées consisted of braised pork belly by Andrae and Rosso buco by Mauro, with 2013 Lewis Vineyard Cabernet and 2014 Columbia Valley Syrah. Dessert was Mauro's olive oil cake with 2016 Late Harvest Riesling. There was a lot of fun and conversation. It was one of the best winemaker dinners we've ever been to. The Dunham wines will be reviewed in June.
Watch for the June issue of the Review of Washington Wines which goes on line April 25.