The Walla Walla Fair and Frontier Days has been a tradition every Labor Day weekend. There was a time when I wouldn't miss much of it, but then again times have changed. I now skip the rodeo as those seated next to me didn't appreciate me cheering for the calf and the bull to win. I now skip the concert as I don't have a clue who these country singers are? Country you say? I like country music, but to me country is Willie, Hank, Patsy Cline and the ol' Possum. So what's left you say? The Demo Derby! My best kept secret is that I love the Demolition Derby.
It never fails, when I leave a Demolition Derby my voice disappears from the dirt, smoke and exhaust fumes in the air. And sure enough, if you are a local there are going to be a few favorites in the arena you are going to scream and cheer for. The participating vehicles are stripped of interior fixtures, trim, plastic, lights, and glass. They are usually repainted, often in loud, garish designs to mark names, slogans and identification. Local spray paint sales in town are solid. And you just don't have to be a cowboy to participate in the Walla Walla Fair and Frontier Days Demolition Derby, either - - winemakers race, too. Check out the Battle Wagon!
The Battle Wagon is on top of his race this year. Charles Smith, winemaker and racer of the Battle Wagon was recently given some smash 'em and crash 'em scores. I am not one to promote a lot of scores, but when you see numbers like these you gotta talk and do some cheering for the racer behind the driver's seat.
2007 Charles Smith Wines “Heart" Syrah - Royal Slope Columbia Valley:
Earth, underbrush, truffle, brier, game, bacon, and blueberry aromas lead to loaded, super-rich, uncuous, full-bodied Syrah. Mouthfilling, already complex, and multi-dimension, it has exceptional length and impeccable balance. 98 Pts. Robert Parker.
2007 Charles Smith Wines “Old Bones" Syrah - Royal Slope Columbia Valley:Savory, rich, layered, and laready complex, this exceptionally lengthy mouth-filling, hedonistic Syrah. 99 Pts. Robert Parker
2007 Charles Smith Wines “Royal City" Syrah Stoneridge Vineyard - Columbia Valley: An inky purple/black in color, it deals out aromas of mineral, truffle, espresso, licorice, lavender, incense, and blueberry. Super complex, suave and debonair on the palate, this is a lengthy, concentrated, impeccably balanced, complete Syrah. 99 Pts. Robert Parker
2007 Charles Smith Wines “Skull" Syrah - Royal Slope - Columbia Valley:From the Stone Ridge Vineyard on the Royal Slope, it was aged in 20% new oak with some stems. It is a more brooding effort with aromas of earth, underbrush, truffle, Asian spices, incense, and blueberry. 98 Pts. Robert Parker