This Time Last Year – Part 29: My last night in Birch Bay

Part of a series of posts that cover my travel to Greece and the USA in April/May 2016.

May 13 2016 – Birch Bay, Washington, USA

It’s my last night with  Bob and Jenise in Birch Bay. I have given them wine. Now they are giving me wine – Washington wine – to swaddle like a baby in my clothes in my travel bag to take back home.

There’s a bottle of Savage Grace Wines Celilo Vineyard Columbia Gorge Chardonnay 2014 and a bottle of the Bevan Cellars Dry Stack Vineyard Bennnet Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – the same producer of the complex ‘alternative style’ sauvignon blanc we had at The Willows Inn the previous night and was a match made in heaven with the wild herbs and mustard greens. When it was opened Jenise had said, “Wait til you try this. It’s so different and exciting.” But to me it was so familiar. It could have been from New Zealand. “I’m glad I not tasting this blind as I’d never guess Washington,” I said.

Bevan, Maison Bleue and Savage Grace

Wine is flowing into glasses again. The cork has been popped on a bottle of Maison Bleue Metis Blanc 2012 from the Columbia Valley. This is a blend of 65% Marsanne, 35% Grenache Blanc and 5% Marsanne and it a refreshing, very dry, high acid style with hints of apricot and lovely use of oak and possibly malo as there’s a slightly buttery feel to the finish.

Jenise is preparing a light meal, Mexican style with those fresh Wisconsin wild ramps bought from the Whole Foods Market the other day. They’re garlicky and leeky sweet and deliciously tasty.

We toy with a wine in a can. It’s called ‘Underwood’. It’s simple. It’s light. It is what it is. But it does taste like pinot. I don’t think it was designed to be sipped out of Burgundy glasses though.

Wine in a Can

We accompany dinner with Walla Walla Valley ‘In The Rocks’ Vineyard Syrah 2012 – an incredibly complex Syrah with full of wild berries with an intriging floral allure and aromatic spices enlivening the palate.

‘In The Rocks’ Syrah

It time to finish my packing. Bob and Jenise are flying out in the morning too and they have to start packing.

Their hospitality has been nothing short of amazing and I’m thinking, ‘How do I really say thank you.’ And at that moment I knew there had to be another gift of wine and I knew exactly what it would be – some exceptional wild-yeast-fermented-in-barrel New Zealand sauvignon blancs that I could buy in the USA and get shipped to Birch Bay.

I check out Southern Wines in California who I know have one of the best New Zealand selections. I email them a wish list of alternative style #nzwine sauvignon blancs. They can get everything for me except Cloudy Bay Te Koko but I’d like to add this so Jenise and Bob can contrast and compare. I find CBTK at Atlas Wine Sales in Oregon.

I have two spaces spare in my Southern Wines case so add two of my favourite chardonnays. Sometime in the next week the Cloudy Bay and the case of the Southern Wines selection will turn up on Jenise and Bob’s doorstep. I hope they like what I chose.

2 x Dog Point Section 94 Sauvignon Blanc 2012
2 x Greywacke Wild Sauvignon Blanc 2013
2 x Pegasus Bay Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2011
2 x Jules Taylor On the Quiet Sauvignon Blanc 2014
2 x Giesen The August 1888 Sauvignon Blanc 2012
1 x Kumeu River Hunting Hill Chardonnay 2012
1 x Greywacke Marlborough Chardonnay 2012

Thank you so much Bob and Jenise.


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