Another winery I had a good luck to visit when I was in the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State was Wind Rose Cellars. The owner and wine maker, Mr. David Volmut, greeted me at the door. Wind Rose Cellars just opened last year in Sequim (pronounced “skwim”) but is already producing some nice wines. David does have wine making experience, having worked at another winery in Eastern Washington before opening his winery. The winery produced a mere 800 cases this year, and will increase to 1200 cases next year. So if you want to try their wines, I suggest going to visit them.
The thing that intrigued me about this winery is that all their wines are produced from Italian grape varieties. My obvious question is why are you not making wines from French varieties? Washington is well known for producing wonderful Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. David, true to his heart, said he is of Italian descent, and likes Italian grapes. He did as part of his foray into starting his own winery, took a trip to Italy where he met with various wineries and asked the wine makers about their experience creating wines with the Italian varieties. He said the wine makers were very happy to talk to him, and the experience helped him along with his wines.
The Wines I Enjoyed and Wind Rose Cellars
- Pinot Grigio 2011. This wine was produced with 1/3 stainless steel and 2/3 neutral oak for a bit extra complexity. The wine was pale lemon in colour. A very fruity nose with citrus and pears aromas. Light body, round with a citrus bite. Lots of tropical and peach flavours, with a slight hint of vanilla. Long length. Nice wine.
Barbera Rose 2010. With a bit of Tempranillo for added colour. This wine also goes with the 2/3 oak and 1/3 stainless steel treatment. Very light cherry colour with a light strawberry nose. Light body, round and dry with red cherry flavours.
- Bravo Rosso 2009. This wine is a blend of 5 grapes mainly Primitivo and with lesser amounts of Barbera, Dolcetto, Nebbiolo, and Cabernet Sauvignon (How did that Bordeaux grape get in there!). Each lot was fermented separately and aged for 18 months before final blending. Medium garnet in the glass with light cherry and licorice aromas. Medium body, dry with vanilla and red cherry flavours. Medium tannins coming in the mid palate and having a dry puckering finish (maybe from the Nebbiolo). I also had a chance to try this wine with some dark chocolate and it was a very nice pairing.
- Dolcetto 2010. Did you know that there are only 20 acres of Dolcetto in all of Washington State? Getting to try it here is a treat. This wine is fermented in 100% stainless steel to give you the full fruit from this grape. Medium ruby colour. Nice nose, with sweet cherries and some sweet spices. Medium body, dry with soft tannins. Nice flavours of cherries, sweet berries, and some nutmeg and hazelnut too. Quite high acidity, but quite nice.
- Barbera 2009. The Barbera grapes for this wine comes from the Red Heaven Vineyard in the Red Mountain AVA. I’ve heard that the Red Mountain AVA very full bodied wines from other grapes. How about Barbera? This wine was medium cherry in colour. Vanilla, coffee, and cherry jam aromas. A pretty nose. Very fruity with red cherries, red berries and some vanilla. Dry with medium acidity and long length. Very nice!
- Nebbiolo 24K Vineyard, 2009. This wine is a blend of 85% Nebbiolo and 15% Barbera and was my favourite wine of the tasting. Nebbiolo to me is another heart break grape, like Pinot Noir. It is thin skinned and difficult to grow. When the wine is produced, it tends to be very high in tannins and takes many years for the tannins to drop and the beautiful fruit and rose aromas to come out. This wine was light/medium garnet coloured and had a light cherry nose. Medium body, dry with low tannins and higher acidity. Red cherry and some vanilla flavour. Dry puckering finish.
Here is the website link for Wind Rose Cellars. Cin cin!