Wine pairs perfectly with the holidays. Think of a luscious full-bodied Cabernet alongside a Christmas standing rib roast; turkey with all the trimmings and a glass of crisp Viognier or a flavorful semi-dry rosé. Festive cranberry wines are perfect for sipping with a mix of hors d’oeuvres and ports can be savored at the end of a meal with or without dessert.
A bottle of wine handcrafted in Washington makes an excellent holiday gift, and is an opportunity to celebrate the bounty of our state with friends and family. With enough variety to please any palate, wine is a choice that is rarely “re-gifted.”
And why not add some fun to your holiday shopping? Instead of running to the grocery store and picking up a bottle, take the time to visit some local wineries. Discover varietals and blends that may only be available in the tasting room, adding to their uniqueness as holiday gift items.
While pleasing those on your holiday list, you’ll also be helping to boost our state’s economy by becoming a “wine tourist.” According to the “Economic Impact of Washington Grapes and Wine,” a comprehensive study commissioned by the Washington Wine Commission and the Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers and released earlier this year, wine tourism expenditures increased 165.3 percent each year between 1999 and 2006, reaching $237.6 million in 2006. Overall, Washington’s wine industry contributes $3 billion annually to our state’s economy. Let’s keep the train going!
Summer covers the North Olympic Peninsula in numerous shades of purple as the designated Lavender Capital of North America comes abloom. Celebrating this seasonal heritage, the Olympic Peninsula Wineries invite the public to enjoy a special Lavender Wine Tour, from Saturday, July 12 to Sunday July 20. the seven artisan wineries will pour their new and current releases from 11- 5 daily. Drive the self-guided Lavender Wine Tour and experience the warm hospitality for which the wineries are known.
The wine tour kicks-off Sequim’s annual Lavender Festival, set to take place July 18-20. The festival is the largest lavender event in North America, attracting visitors from around the world each year. The Olympic Peninsula Wineries will be featured in the Wine & Beer Garden during the Festival Street Fair, with wines available for tasting or for purchase by the glass or by the bottle.
Gorgeous scenery, warm temperatures and a jovial crowd made for a great Spring Barrel Tasting Weekend. The three day event brought out the best in everyone as they toured the scenic back roads, gazed at the snow covered Olympic Mountains, and tasted both wines in progress direct from the oak barrels and some spectacular current releases.
For more great fun in Olympic Wine Country you might want to put the Sequim Lavender Festival on your calendar. All the wineries will be open for the “Celebrate Lavender Wine Tour” July 12-20, 2008. Reserve your ticket and glass combination in advance on line or purchase at the door of any participating winery.
Most of the wineries are now on their summer schedules with expanded tasting room days and hours. Come for a visit … we are looking forward to seeing you!