Alder Ridge Estate Winery 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $30

One of the Northwest’s most picturesque vineyards, Alder Ridge is a sweeping site at 800 acres that has supplied prized fruit for a number of producers on both sides of the Columbia River soon after it was established in 1997. The spirit of the late John Farmer, vineyard manager for…

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Desert Wind Winery 2015 Estate Ruah Proprietary Red Wine, Wahluke Slope, $20

The Fries family of Duck Pond Cellars fame in Oregon built Desert Wind Winery a decade ago in Prosser as a platform for its extensive plantings on the Wahluke Slope and a showpiece wine country inn for the Yakima Valley. Ruah is their flagship bottling, a proprietary red blend they…

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Abacela 2013 Barrel Select Tempranillo, Umpqua Valley, $33

As the maturity of the Fault Line Vineyards settles in, Abacela’s amigos benefit. Founding winemaker Earl Jones describes Tempranillo as akin to a Cabernet Sauvignon in its youth, and here are classic notes of Bing cherry, pomegranate and cherry pipe tobacco with the variety’s magisterial tannins. While it spent less…

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Winter’s Hill Winery 2014 Estate Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, $39

The Gladhart family established its vineyard in 1991, and their immediate neighbors along the upper reaches of this southernmost portion of the Dundee Hills include the likes of Domaine Serene and Stoller. A smooth growing season across their Salmon Safe site at 730 feet elevation paved the way for this…

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Oregon wine industry tops 725 wineries, 30,000 acres of vines

Willamette Valley Vineyards launched its Elton Winery brand this summer, a tribute to the highly acclaimed vineyard established by the late Dick O’Brien and his wife, Betty. (Photo by Eric Degerman/Great Northwest Wine) PORTLAND, Ore. — The Oregon wine industry grew its sales in 2016 by 12 percent to $529…

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Washington Wine Hall of Fame Gala raises record $105,000 for Clore Center

Doug Gore receives his plaque as a new inductee of the Washington Wine Hall of Fame from Abbey Cameron, executive director of the Walter Clore Wine & Culinary Center in Prosser. (Photo by Richard Duval Images) PROSSER, Wash. – Friends of storied winemaker Doug Gore came out to support his…

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A dozen great Northwest wines

Only after deciding how we want to rate a wine do we learn what it is. Our top rating is “Outstanding!” (Photo by Darlene Hildebrandt/Digital Photo Mentor) What makes a great Northwest wine? When we evaluate wines, we taste them under blind conditions, meaning we know neither the producer nor…

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Clearwater Canyon Cellars 2016 Lolo White Wine, Lewis-Clark Valley, $18

Arnett Vineyard in Clarkston, Wash., and Umiker Vineyard in Lewiston, Idaho, come together for this aromatic blend that continues to features Pinot Gris (25%), Muscat (22%) and Gewurztraminer (17%) but there are also significant contributions of Chardonnay (19%) and Viognier (14%). There’s a tropical theme because of the three varieties…

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Finn Hill Winery 2016 Corfu Crossing Vineyard The Gnome Riesling, Columbia Valley, $20

Woodinville winemaker Rob Entrekin works with the Lawrence family’s Corfu Crossing Vineyard along the Royal Slope, and at 1,675 feet elevation, these clone 12 plantings rank among the highest in Washington. This slightly sweet Riesling presents aromas of peach and poached pear with apricot skins. A touch of spritz leads…

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Devison departs EFESTE for Cadaretta, Walla Walla

Peter Devison, new winemaker for Middleton Family Wines, has been a part of the Washington wine industry since 2005. (Photo courtesy of Middleton Family Wines) OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Middleton family replaced one talented Canadian winemaker with another when they named Peter Devison as head winemaker for Middleton Family Wines, best…

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