Lost River Winery 2012 Merlot, Columbia Valley, $25

Winemaker John Morgan was a civil engineer in Bellingham before deciding to open this winery in 2002 in the Methow Valley. It was a good move for him and wine lovers, as he has proven to be one of North Central Washington’s most talented winemakers. This gorgeous Merlot offers aromas…

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Jones of Washington 2014 Estate Chardonnay, Wahluke Slope, $14

Best Buy! Using grapes from estate vineyards on the warm Wahluke Slope, winemaker Victor Palencia continues to show his skills as one of Washington’s finest white wine producers. This opens with intriguing aromas of lemon bar and orange zest, followed by flavors of crisp lime and lemon, all backed by…

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Roller Girl 2013 Jammer Red, Walla Walla County, $18

College Cellars alumna Tanya Woodley recently doubled production for SuLei Cellars, and the success of her entry-level Roller Girl Jammer Red is powering much of that growth. She admits that her goal for this blend of Merlot (43%), Cabernet Franc (31%) and Cabernet Sauvignon is one of approachability. It finds…

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Airfield Estates 2015 Sweet Riesling, Yakima Valley, $15

Best Buy! Marcus Miller, a product of Walla Walla Community College’s winemaking school, grows 27 varieties across nearly 900 acres of vines on his family’s estate near Prosser, Wash. That gives him the flexibility to develop Riesling in a variety of ways, including this in an off-dry style the German…

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Seven Hills Winery 2015 Pinot Gris, Oregon, $17

One of the Walla Walla Valley’s most historic figures, Casey McClellan, owns estate vineyards on the Oregon side of the stateline. And he used to make wine in Milton-Freewater. It makes sense that he relies on sites in Oregon — Abiqua Wind near Salem, Dunning near Corvallis and Melrose in…

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Reustle Prayer Rock Vineyards 2014 Smaragd Grüner Veltliner, Umpqua Valley, $32

A motorcycle trip through the Alps inspired Stephen Reustle to make this Austrian variety his signature grape, and the self-taught Southern Oregon winemaker pioneered its production in the U.S. with the 2005 vintage. His plantings began in 2003, and they now span 5 acres across his two vineyards – Romancing…

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Nicolas-Jay 2014 Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, $65

This decade’s Burgundian invasion into Oregon continues as Jean-Nicolas Méo of famed Domaine Méo-Camuzet marks the delectable debut of his heralded Pinot Noir partnership with longtime friend/former MCA Records executive Jay Boberg. It’s the flagship of their young brand, spearheaded by Adelsheim alumna Tracy Kendall, and it incorporates Bishop Creek…

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RMS 2013 Brut, Willamette Valley, $65

Texan A&M product Rollin Michael Soles, the Pacific Northwest pioneer for sparkling wine as founding winemaker at Argyle in 1987, debuts his bubble program as part of the ROCO Winery brand he launched in 2001 with his wife, Corby. It’s not coincidence that this vintage coincides with the establishment of…

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Joleté Wines 2015 Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley, $20

West Coast winemaker Jim Sanders, known in Oregon primarily for his work under the Le Cadeau Vineyard brand and his Aubichon Cellars label, creates a variety of reds and aromatic whites from California and the Willamette Valley under the Joleté label. His latest Pinot Gris is off Olenik Vineyard in…

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L’Ecole No. 41 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Walla Walla Valley, $40

The maturity and diversity of vineyards in the Walla Walla Walla Valley is displayed in this 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon as winemaker Mike Sharon sources from seven sites. They range from the fascinating fractured basalt of the young estate Ferguson Vineyard to river rock of Stone Valley and Yellow Jacket…

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