Blake and I have spent a fair amount of time in tasting rooms. As you should know by now Leavenworth WA, is our favorite place to go on a wine walk. It is a prime location to find amazing wines and great company concentrated into a small radius. While of course we are looking to taste great wines, we are primarily looking to enjoy our time in the tasting rooms.
We hope to enjoy the company of the tasting room employees, while learning about their wines and the lineage of the winery. The perfect balance of facts and fun are necessary. We want the employee to share with us the nuances of how the winemaker used certain techniques to bring out a given note. But we also want to get to know the heaven sent person serving us our wine, while doing gods mission. Get it, the whole water to wine thing...It was about tasting rooms right? I never read the book.
The beauty of spending time with a tasting room associate is you already have something in common - the love of wine! You can bypass the polite casualties of meeting someone new and jump into sharing something you love with a stranger. You will soon find yourself enjoying your wine with a new bestie.
When I shared with The Wine Tails following that we were headed to Leavenworth, Tiffany from Goose Ridge Wines reached out. She offered for us to come by to participate in a personalized tasting. Of course, we were stoked to partake! Blake and I have had their wines before, but it had been nearly a year and a half since we last tasted their fermented grape goodness. The Leavenworth tasting room is also dog friendly, so we were able to make it a family affair. Chance naturally made himself at home.
We were so excited for the tasting because the last time we were in, we had an amazing anniversary vintage of which I cannot remember the name. Regardless, I was excited to try the new vintages and learn more about the winery.
Often in tasting rooms with several varietals and vintages, you will be asked what you would like and if you would prefer to stick with white or red wines. In this case, we always ask the person pouring to take us on a wine journey. They know more about their wines than we do after all.
It is a phenomenal tactic because it is fun to see what is chosen for us and how the server crafts the wine line up.
I assume it is exciting for the tasting room associate too because they get to be creative. They can share their favorite wines and wines they think are interesting or just want to talk about. It is also an avenue for us to find and learn about wines we have not had before.
While at our personalized tasting in the Leavenworth tasting room, we asked Timothy to take us on a wine tasting journey. We let him know nothing was out of the question. I am kicking myself because I did not write down what we tasted or the order in which we tasted. We did however, kick of the tastings with their awesome Cascadian Outfitters canned wine. The clean and crisp notes make these wines a backpacking must have.
But, it was what came next that was much more magical. Timothy shared his favorite wines with us and patterned them in such a way that left us wanting more. He shared with us ideas for perfect pairings with the delicious cheeses we could find at the Cheesemongers in town. He was excited about the wine and passionate about the winery. We enjoyed hearing about his experience and knowledge of the industry. In short, he was anecdotally brilliant.
As he weaved through the tasting, he got to know us and our palates. He could tell we loved bold tannic wines. Behold, he poured us jaw dropping reds. One after the other challenged our taste buds as our olfactory receptors were delightfully tickled. We were hooked.
It is no surprise that we loved Goose Ridge Wines yet again. The winemaker Andrew Wilson spent time working with other notable vintners from Forgeron Cellars and Long Shadows Vintners. One of his wine making specialties is Cabernet Sauvignon. I learned this after we bought a bottle of this "gold" laden grape juice. Our soft spot for notes of tobacco and spice is hit hard in this Cab Sauv.
My mouth is watering as I recap this experience. It was one of the best tasting experiences Blake and I have had. We got our fix of fun and facts. Like a good wine, a tasting experience should leave you wanting more. It is my hope and assumption that the employees in the various Goose Ridge tasting rooms are as passionate and knowledgeable as Timothy is in the Leavenworth location.
I highly recommend indulging your palate in Goose Ridge Wines. We are headed to Woodinville in a few weeks and we plan to stop in at this location as well. We need more of their wine! For those of you who are not in the great state of Washington, that is not a problem. Their wines can be found in all 50 states! It is my hope you will treat your taste buds with these awesome wines. Until next time, cheers!