Another WAwineman classic, 1st posted on September 11, 2009:
The money’s flowing back into Puget Sound again…Microsoft is spared $358 mil in damages, Russell Investments bought the old WaMu Center for a paltry $115 mil, and I made $2.58 in my mutual funds today. The Intiman and Seattle Rep Theatres learned the hard way that you don’t mess with removing disabled parking spots. Senator Cantwell delivered some real input to Pres. Obama…you know what?, politics suck so I’m censoring the rest of this nonsense. Ahhh Ory-gun…Salem police stopped a 59-yr old and arrested her for drunkenness, then her 66-yr old boyfriend pulled up alongside and then he too got arrested for DUI. Oregon…at least they have great pinot noir.
What more can I say about the most beautiful chateau in Woodinville? They throw first-class wine parties, their wines are honored by every magazine, they donate generously to the Auction of WA Wines, the support staff are so gracious and always smiling, and on and on. DeLille Cellars has spawned affiliated labels in Doyenne, their Rhone blend label, and Big O Wine Company, partly leadered by Stacy Lill (Greg’s wife). I’ve had all their wines and they are all stud values with full flavor. I’ve even been lucky enough to assist in bottling their ’06 Grand Ciel. Want the best volunteer job in Woodinville? It’s DeLille, hands down.
Hey, get back to the review, buddy. To understand DeLille Cellars is to go back to the last great war when Charles Lill, after a stay in a labor camp, emigrated with his new bride to Canada to escape the nonsense of the loss of family wealth due to the conflict. Charles made a living selling insurance and was transferred to Tacoma. After retiring in the early ’90s, he invested in his son’s proposed winery with winemaker Chris Upchurch and wine broker Jay Soloff. The result was, in 1992, DeLille Cellars was born on a 10-acre property in south Woodinville. With initial help from legendary winemaker David Lake (Columbia), DeLille Cellars became known as the “Chateau Lafite” of Washington State by none other than Robert Parker. One little secret, the Lill family have been generous supporters of the German Retirement Home in Kirkland and the Continental Club. Charles passed away in January of 2008 but his spirit lives on in the wines of DeLille Cellars.
Tonight’s accompaniment was the equivalent of bowling a ‘300’: SeaBear smoked Copper River salmon on Wheat Thins and Beecher’s Smoked Flagship (hey, it’s a brick and it’s just me). Phreakin’ A! The oily fish on a crunchy chip combined with the fresh Washington strawberry and a blissful tinge of Rainier cherries make for a Seattle Symphony in the mouth. A stunner.
Color: a shade darker than king salmon. Nose: strawberry liqueur, blooming cherry, a tinkle of raspberry and orange drop. Mouthfeel: liquid Jello. Flavors: more off the nose plus an ending of herbal garden.
First vintage. 70% Ciel du Cheval mourvedre, 15% Ciel du Cheval grenache, 15% Boushey Vineyard cinsault. Columbia Valley AVA. They didn’t make enough. Rated: 93. Value: $25. Paid: $20. Summer in a bottle. Let me give just one piece of “you’ll thank me next year” advice: buy the 2009 while it’s still available. This is WAwineman…uncorked, uneducated but not uncouth.