Did y’all check out my preview of the Washington wine I’d be enjoying during the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay? Well it was no idle chit-chat, I actually went and spent a fair bit of time in the tent, trying a handful of wines and a cider. (Thanks to the Washington Wine Commission, who gave me a ticket as a member of the media.)
After tasting I went for a quick stroll around the course. I watched Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed, the leaders after day two, purposefully stroll by overhead, saw a bunch of guys tee off from 10 feet away, and had a nice chat with a golf instructor about letting the club do the work for you. (#ProTip.)
Then I escaped the heat, dust, and direct sun to knock back some beers in the tent and pop out on the deck to watch some 18th hole driving action. Oh, and Seattle Seahawk Steven Hauschka stopped by. Finally, I got some flak for wearing my Cubs hat. (Not from Hauschka.) Anyway, let’s go back to the 19th hole for some tasting impressions.
A Selection of Washington Wine I Tried During the U.S. Open
- 2013 Cadaretta SBS: 70% Sauvignon Blanc/30 % Semillon. Perfect for crushing in the comfort of a climate-controlled, shady, temporary edifice. What I like about SBS blends is that the S mellows out the intensity of the SB and adds a little richness.
- 2011 Cadence Tapteil: 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 18% Merlot. From a single vineyard on Red Mountain, I can always sniff out Cab Franc in Ben Smith’s wines. Lots of savory olive notes, a pop of black cherry, and tannins that melt like a soothing lozenge.
- 2012 Betz Pére de Famille Cabernet Sauvignon: Class Cab notes (green-y, eucalyptus action) with a little bit of Washington oomph. The Betz really benefited from time in the glass, so make sure to give this a vigorous decant if you plan on enjoying in the near future.
- 2012 Proper Estate Syrah: Probably not as many wines in the world with as significant a “tell” than those from the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater (aka “The Rocks”). Very meaty and earthy. Classic Rocks Syrah.
- 2012 W.T. Vintners Les Collines Vineyard Damavian Syrah: Hailing from the Walla Walla Valley, the Damavian Syrah is like an impeccable steak tartare: fresh and meaty.
- Finnriver Golden Russet Cider: Took me back to the Long Grove Apple Haus (RIP), childhood bike ride destination close to my Buffalo Grove home, where the smell of fresh-pressed cider would engulf my senses.
And that’s a Washington wine (and cider) wrap from Chambers Bay. Peace out!
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