For our German Beer and wine dinner, guests were pleasantly surprised to see three reds on the menu, and one was from our neighbor island over on Whidbey.
Stadt Krems Grüner Veltliner Wienzierlberg 2011
Fresh citrus and white currant flavors on the palate, slightly floral with pleasant peppery velvety structure on the palate. Pairs well with sausage, poached salmon or roasted chicken. $27
Augus Kesseler Spatsburgunder Pinot Noir 2010
A delicate, feminine Pinot Noir but well structured with nice cherry flavors, a hint of black currant and lots of spices. A distinct Burgundian flair, with aromas of farmland and wildflowers. $18.
Whidbey Island Winery Lemberger 2011
This cold hardy grape from Germany and Austria was extensively planted in Washington due to our similar climates. This port-like wine has enchanting flavors of cherry, raspberry and spicy black pepper with food-friendly acidity and medium body. Pair it with grilled foods, lamb, pasta, pizza and especially salmon. We paired it with a dessert sorbet made with roasted red plums. $16
San Juan Vineyards, 2010 Sangiovese, Yakima Valley
Strawberry and leather with brambleberry and dark chocolate on the palate. We paired it with a grilled octopus, but it will go well with rich spicy foods or braised meats. $23
The San Juan Vineyards dinner, as the capstone event for the Ag Guild’s Taste the Feast weekend, showcased three of their estate wines – the 2012 Siegerrebe, 2012 Madeleine Angevine and 2009 Pinot Noir. These wines are made from grapes grown on San Juan Island, the Puget Sound AVA. This was Chef Bill’s and Chris’ third collaboration and the wines showed beautifully with the food offerings. Third time’s the charm.
We are sad to say that this was the last dinner for San Juan Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir as the vines were pulled. After 10 years, Chris had only one harvest and it was not an effective vineyard practice to spend 20% of his annual vineyard time tending to grapes that only produced 10% of the time. So we were lucky to have served some of the last bottles at Coho’s Winemaker dinner.
Betz Family Winery 2010 and 2011 Syrah La Côte Rousse, Red Mountain, WA
We offered a vertical tasting over two courses. It was interesting to see how the wine evolved in just one year. Both the 2011 and 2010 Syrahs are deep dark purple wines that evoke the depth of flavor in your glass. The 2011 has aromatics of smoke, dried herbs, and violet. There is lots of black cherry and plums on the tongue with a balanced tannic foundation and soft acidity on the finish.
The 2010 had many of the same wonderful characteristics with the maturity of another year of aging; though it is not available to the public, we were allotted a limited supply for the dinner. The 2011 is a bit more rustic and the 2010 refined with many of the rough edges smoothed with time. $55 (2011)