Ryan Patrick Vineyards 2006 Estate chardonnay

Another early WAwineman classic, 1st posted on July 3, 2008:

Yet another legend passes…raise a glass to Bozo the Clown! My childhood is disappearing a little more everyday. Here’s my all-time Sonics list: Russ Schoene, Frank Brickowski, Robert Swift, Mike Wilks, and Zaid Abdul-Aziz. Yeah. Go (away) Sonics! No, that was not me with my hair on fire (even though that’s my “normal” hairstyle) running away from a flaming bus on Hwy. 520. And why is Joe Metro raising bus fare another whopping 25 cents and blaming it on gas prices. Hey Ronnie Sims, high gas prices are not my fault so don’t make me pay for it. Go and beg to King Fahd or any of them other sultans of cash-ish. And, lastly, another sign that el-gringo dinero is going worthless…Alaska Air will no longer take my 5-spot for a 3 ounce brewski, as they have converted to a more expensive form of currency…plastic. You seen how much those Ethos water bottles cost??? What? And you thought it was all about the water?!

Ryan Patrick Vineyards got started in 1996 by yet another no-longer employed retiree (appreciate the “unemployed”, folks) out in that sparkling metropolis of Quincy. Owner Terry Flanagan planned his dream job very well in first selecting the estate property to plant his vineyards. He let his son, Patrick, go whole-hog into the industry once he became legal by starting out as Cellar Master at Three Rivers Winery, then to Forgeron Cellars, before returning home to Wenatchee. An untimely fatal accident in 2004 changed the direction of the winemaking to a fully capable Cornell food science grad in oenologist Craig Mitrakul. Terry’s other son, Ryan, manages Indian Wells Vineyard for The Big Show (CSM). Folks, for lack of academic pedigree, there’s some good hands-on ingenuity going on here and any American has to root for this type of underdog.

Tonight’s pre-Independence Day grinds included a luscious baked salmon bathed in a soy sauce and herb marinade. This wine was another bottle bought “blind” from QFC so I had no clue on what to expect of this pairing. Turned out that this was evenly balanced…not too fruity, not too oaky. Blended very well with salmon and accompanying sides of steamed bok choi and beef broccoli.

Alcohol: 13.7%. Vineyards: 82% Bishop’s, 18% Homestead. Pure chardonnay. Fermented in oak for 8 months. Partial malolactic fermentation. 928 cases. Bottled: May 30, 2007. Titratable acidity: 5.9 g/L. pH 3.58. Rock Island, WA. Motto on front label reads “Certavi et Vici”…I have fought and conquered. Columbia Valley AVA.

Nose: Granny Smith. Color: light champagne. Mouthfeel: fluid velvet. Tail trail: 3 seconds. Attentuated flavors: green apple, white peach, and a pinch of apricot. Very little residual heat burn associated with the higher alcohol bombs.

Rated: 80. Value: $16. Paid: $18. This is WAwineman…uncorked, uneducated but not uncouth.

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