Coyote Canyon Winery 2007 viognier

Another early WAwineman classic, 1st posted on November 15, 2008:

A 22 year-old W. German “accidentally” blew up half his apartment complex after opening the natural gas taps because he was distraught over a breakup with a 17 year-old, who chose to light up before leaving. Unfortunately, both survived. Gotta love them Aussies for trying to solve the economic mess…the owner of a resort is promoting an “anything goes” month-long nude party because “tough times call for stiff measures.” If it works, I’ll be looking forward to annual recessions. I just bought a row of tickets for the inauguration party off of craigslist…anyone wanna join me? It includes a bottle of 2-buck Chuck and hearty limburger. Let’s thank the Seattle Parks Dept. for allowing me to continue bike riding in Freeway Park in the buff. Like I have better things to do. And finally, Gov. Gregoire is asking for ideas on cutting the deficit…I say tax all Cali and French wines up the yingyang, along with anyone who doesn’t drink WA wine at least once a month. And make it mandatory that all WA wineries serve WA cheeses. That will stimulate WA wine/cheese purchases that will, in turn, increase tax revenue and the consumers will all be pickled tink. Or ro-zeh. Or whatever.

Okay, back to semi-normal. Never heard of this winery which is why I had to get this bottle. Mike Andrews runs this joint, along with over 1100 acres of prime HHH terrain. Mike’s family has been farming the land since 1945; and he’s been increasing grape space since 1994 from 21 acres to over 500 today. He also raises cattle, which I gather, provides some fine sourced-fertilizer material as well as a hunky dinner. His wife, Dawn, monopolizes Prosser’s cake industry. Oldest son ex-Marine Matt manages the winery at the Winemaker’s Loft and another son, barrister Jeff runs the vineyard. Youngest daughter Michaela aspires to be in primary education. Youngest son, Macauley, is tractor racing in the vineyards. Do you need any more evidence that winemaking is a family addiction? So, this winery started operations in 2006 after many years of supplying  grapes to the big names like Northstar and Columbia Crest. This tells me their grapes are good and plentiful. Even more of a pleasant surprise is this viognier is an estate single vineyard in the banjo-kazooie Horse Heaven Hills AVA.

Tonight’s elegant meeting included freshly chopped Chinese salad, deliciously crunchy yellow takuwan, and a zesty lemon-glazed baked chicken breast. This was like a pre-arranged marriage gone right. A virtual cornucopia of mellow flavors leading up to a zingy take on cooked chicken meat. The blissful aromatics of the viognier completed the flavor-palooza that was dancing on my tastebuds. Not as creamy as the Mark Ryan version, but very true to the varietal. It just oozes terpenes. As for dessert, I must say this viognier did an encore with Godiva ‘Mielodie’ praline, a divine package of sweet and salty honeyed almond butter praline in white chocolate. (Translation: Praline au beurre d’amande et au miel, aux teintes sucrees et salees, enrobe de chocolat blanc.) Parlay vu France that, sucka!

Alcohol: 13.9%. Nose: same-day cut white flowers from the Peninsula, peaches, pears, nectarines. Color: titanium yellow. Mouthfeel: warm and concentrated. Tail trail: 4 seconds. Flavors: same as the nose. Rated: 90. Value: $20. Paid: $15. This is WAwineman…uncorked, uneducated but not uncouth.

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