Fujishin Family Cellars 2014 Late Harvest Riesling, Snake River Valley, $19

Riesling planted at Polo Cove Vineyard has the advantage of growing at about 2,800 feet elevation, making it one of the highest sites in Idaho’s Snake River Valley. Sunnyslope winemaker Martin Fujishin has worked closely with Polo Cove for several years, and he’s produced a marvelous late harvest-style Riesling as…

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Terra Nativa Vineyards 2012 Reserve Merlot, Idaho, $40

Treasure Valley developer Richard Pavelek dotes on his vines of red Bordeaux varieties grown in the foothills east of Boise, making his perhaps the state’s highest elevation  site for ongoing viticulture — 3,100 feet. His focus on estate fruit explains why Terra Nativa is one of Idaho’s tiniest wineries with…

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Cinder Wines 2015 Chardonnay, Snake River Valley, $18

This vintage marked the 10th harvest in Idaho for proud Washington State University grads Melanie Krause and Joe Schnerr, and they’ve kept the focus on the fruit they pulled in from sweeping Sawtooth Vineyard. Only 10% of their barrel program was new, and they aged the juice on the lees…

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Clearwater Canyon Cellars 2015 Umiker Vineyard Lochsa White Wine, Lewis-Clark Valley, $15

Karl and Coco Umiker’s vineyard in the Lewiston Orchards is in its second decade of life, and its growth has allowed them to present this proprietary blend as an entire estate presentation. Legally, they could label this is Chardonnay (86%), and there is a slight influence of 30 percent new…

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Cinder Wines 2014 Tempranillo, Snake River Valley, $29

Often hailed as Idaho’s best winemaker, Cinder co-owner Melanie Krause is making her reputation — and perhaps that of Idaho — with this Spanish variety. This is another great example from the Garden City winery, pulling from three vineyards, Martin Brothers, Sawtooth and Williamson. It releases aromas of bright red…

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Clearwater Canyon Cellars 2014 Petite Sirah, Washington, $28

The Verhey family’s young Roosevelt Vineyard just downstream from the Horse Heaven Hills along the Columbia River quickly has become a prized spot for the Umikers. And while not all practical, but they could almost transport these grapes by boat to their winery in Lewiston, Idaho, not far from the…

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Fujishin Family Cellars 2015 Reserve Viognier, Snake River Valley, $17

Snake River Valley native Martin Fujishin continues to show his commitment to the Sunnyslope Wine District with his latest version of Viognier, a reserve project with longtime grower Ron Bitner. It’s a charming and hedonistic expression of Viognier as its three months in new French oak barrels create a theme…

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Vine 46 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington, $32

Lewiston, Idaho, natives Jeff Ebel and Mike Yates rely on grapes from Rosebud Vineyard on the Wahluke Slope, one of Washington’s oldest vineyards, for most of their production — and especially this delicious Cabernet Sauvignon. Aromas of sweet, dusty herbs, plum and late-summer blackberry give way to flavors of ripe…

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Cinder Wines 2015 Off-dry Riesling, Snake River Valley, $18

Another lauded graduate of the University of Ste. Michelle – Melanie Krause – only recently began producing a Riesling under her own brand in her home state of Idaho. She worked with a handful of Snake River Valley growers – Sawtooth, Skyline, Symms, Trusdell and Williamson – for one of…

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Split Rail Winery 2014 Barbera, Snake River Valley, $35

Engineer-turned-winemaker Jed Glavin is helping to grow the audience for Idaho wines with the work at his Split Rail Winery in the Boise suburb of Garden City. He pulled the fruit for this Barbera from Arena Valley Vineyard near Parma, and the results are impressive. The theme centers on expressive…

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