Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Sinclair Estate Vineyards: To Be Remembered ...

When you first enter Sinclair Estate Vineyards tasting room, located on Main Street in Walla Walla, you are quite taken aback. You might just take another look through the large display windows as a reminder you left behind traffic outside when you first entered through the doors and that you are not in a manor or chateau overlooking rolling green slopes of old vines. Colored walls of slate blue and Tuscan yellow wrap around you and the decor is one of Old World. Large gold gilded frames envelope colorful paintings, elaborate and ornate carved Victorian and European furnishings, a grand piano and larger-than-life sculptures are all about. A true feast for the eyes and in fact a feast all of the senses especially when it comes to the wine.

Sinclair Estate Vineyards is a family owned boutique winery producing mostly French-influenced varietal wines. They are small lots using, like their tasting room style, old world style techniques. Amy Alvarez-Wampfler is the winemaker for this under 500 case production winery. For now the wines are produced at Dunham Cellars by Amy (her husband is Dunham Cellars winemaker, Dan Wampfler). Amy has six years behind her in the wine industry which three of those years have been in winemaking. She finds that the balance of power and structure gives an emphasis to elegant, yet very food-friendly wines.

Sinclair Estate Vineyards Chardonnay - 2009: Amongst those notes of tropical aromas, a bit of roasted marshmallow snuck up on me. A mid-palate of fresh stone fruit with a lingering finish of creme soda. A very food friendly wine or to be enjoyed as a chilled porch sipper.

Sinclair Estate Vineyards Sangiovese - 2008: Also making a statement as a food friendly wine. With the addition of Cabernet, this red spicy wine presents itself as a "Super Tuscan." The perceived sweetness in the mid-palate and lingering finish of tart cherries and peppery finish, will hold up to tomato sauce and smoked meats.

Sinclair Estate Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon - 2007: A powerful red wine with a feminine touch. The Walla Walla fruit in this deep red wine shows off with its smoky and earthy aromas. Notes of dark cocoa and creme de cassis up front lead to a supple and full-bodied wine. A wine that is food friendly to the extreme: roasted meats to chocolate dessert.

Sinclair Estate Vineyards Merlot - 2008: Chocolate-covered cherries and dark ripe plums reminds you this is a Merlot made in Washington State. At first sip a bit of sweetness that leads to a bit of the ol' cigar box and finishes to a long and smooth finish. Another versatile food friendly wine from a bacon burger topped with Bleu cheese to grilled salmon with a Merlot redux sauce.

From the tasting room to the wine in a glass, like the Sinclair Estate Vineyards motto says, "A boutique wine encounter to be remembered ..."


Portland Charcuterie Project said...

That is one good looking hunk of winemaker... I may have to stop spending so much time with Sleight of Hand and try Sinclair.

Catie said...

Hunk? That seems a rather sexist remark. Perhaps that is why you have a pig on your photo?

Kidding ... of course.

Portland Charcuterie Project said...

no problem.. and yes.. that's a truly sexist remark in that I'm objectifying her physicality as opposed to her winemaking.

I will rectify that by visiting her tasting room this spring and tasting her wine :)


Catie said...

Thank you. I am sure Sinclair Estates would appreciate your visit.

Oh and I lied. I wasn't kidding.

Timothy said...

On June 16 Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival will be bringing some Brahms to that gorgeous tasting room... Let's here it for wineries with great wine and Grand Pianos!

Catie said...

Here! Here!

Paredes said...