Sunday, August 29, 2010

Upcoming Event: Columbia Blend from Puget Sound to Portugal

There are blends and then there are blends. If you’re a fan of the latter, there will be a mind blending experience on September 12th at BLEND Seattle. Jamie Peha is at it again and this time she has brought the Portugese into the picture. Not since Carmen Miranda came stateside has Portugal taken the world by storm quite like this. Blend will showcase wines from Portugal, California and Washington.

Blend will offer you exciting opportunities to sample what happens when wine makers decide to dabble a bit. The art of making wine is sometimes summarized as “the art of getting out of the way of the fruit,” letting the wine show itself. Blending however is most definitely an art form and when done well, the selection of combined varietals that most capture the winemaker's imagination can be a real treat for those of us on the other end of the bottle.

There will be 40 wineries in the house - what the young demographic calls "the heezy." Among those wineries you'll find some of Washington's most established, including Delille Cellars and Hedges Family Estates. Another Washington mainstay, J. Bookwalter wines may be the most versed at blending pound for pound (boxing reference). While J. Bookwalter makes plenty of single varietals, their blends make them stand out in a crowd. Their Subplot series, as well as the Couplet, Anthithesis are worth looking out for.

New kid on the block Bart Fawbush will be bringing his Bartholomew Wines to the table, both figuratively and literally. Those who've not yet tried Bart's blends are in for a real surprise. While his blends tend to stick to the more traditional Rhone or Bourdeaux style pairings, I find his Reciprocity (a Cabernet and Carmenere blend) to be a game changer.

Jamie Peha's events up the ante for wine tastings, and that's most evident in the seminars she puts together. This event includes two blending seminars with Chateau Ste Michelle and Columbia Winery. An additional $15 gets you the opportunity to actually be involved in blending your own wine. $15, you cannot be serious? Seating for these is limited, however, so if you're interested, act fast.

In addition to the wine and the blending opportunities, there will be cuisine provided by chefs from some of Washington's finest inns and B&Bs and an exciting contest to win a trip to Portugal. I’ll see you on the 12th of September; the seminars begin at 2:30, but the main event starts at 4pm. Tickets are here.


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