Our final day in Walla Walla started at Charles Smith Wines. I really wanted to hit the tasting room at K Vintners (owner and winemaker is Charles Smith), but they are closed most days. Charles Smith was a fine replacement. The tasting room was awesome. It was very different from most, but I loved it. It has a very industrial feeling with exposed pipes, big wooden rafters, and fabulous brick walls. It’s huge and can easily be used for some potentially fun-filled events. The wines were fun too. He makes some very affordable wines such as “Kung Fu Girl“ Riesling, “Eve” Chardonnay, “The Velvet Devil” Merlot and more. They were all pretty good for the price. Personally, I dig his Syrah. They’re HUGE, but I really like them.
We had a 1pm appointment at Long Shadows, so that was our next destination. We arrived about ½ an hour early, but Jeff was great and let us come right in. Boy oh boy, this place is special. The building is beautiful, the views are stunning and the wines are spectacular. It’s really difficult to find anything wrong with this tasting. Jeff was perhaps the most knowledgeable person of the trip, and again, the wines …
Long Shadows is very different from other wineries. They have a different winemaker (all well respected and well known in the wine world) for each varietal, and each wine is named differently. I could go on and on about Long Shadows and each wine and their winemaker, so I plan to feature one of their wines in an upcoming Wine of the Month. I loved all of the wines, but only had room for two in my checked case boxes. Luckily they distribute!
Our next stop was Va Piano. They had some nice wines and the gal was very nice. The tasting room was packed with a bunch of men on a tour. They seemed to be having a good time! We bought a Bruno’s Blend V, which is a nice, easy drinking wine for only $23.
Next up was Waters, another pretty spot. They also have a very nice tasting room and some good wines. We picked up a 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon.
Our last winery of the trip was Sleight of Hand. My stepson is a magician, so a stop here was a must! Little did we know we were walking into a REALLY fun experience. As soon as we walked into the tasting room the co-owner and winemaker, Trey, greeted us with a question: “What do you want to hear?” I was a little confused; until I saw the row of albums he had lining the back wall. I suggested Bryan Ferry, and by gosh if he didn’t have some Roxy Music! So he put on the album, (yes, VINYL!!!) and we started tasting.
They have some really nice wines. My husband fell in love with them. We ended up buying four, even though we didn’t have the room. We decided that we would need to drink two bottles before leaving Washington! Shipping isn’t an option when it’s already in the 90’s at home. So we purchased a 2009 “Enchantress” Chardonnay, a 2008 “Levitation” Syrah and two bottles of the 2008 “The Illusionist” Cabernet Sauvignon. The chardonnay was full of green apple with some nice oak, but not too much. The acidity was good, so it was nicely balanced. The Cab has some nice dark fruit on the nose and palate, and is one we’re going to cellar for a little while. We also picked up some swag for our 17 year old magician!
After all of the wine tasting, a beer sounded pretty good. So we took the advice of Brooke from Reininger and headed to a local hangout called The Green Lantern. My husband had been dying to sit at a fire pit all during the trip, and Brooke had told us this was the place. Unfortunately, we were there too early! Oh well. We had a couple of very tasty beers and some filling nachos and called it a day.
The next day we headed to Spokane, from where we were flying out. We stayed at the Northern Quest Resort and Casino. We had a fabulous dinner at Masselow’s (the Port Mushrooms with Parmesan are a MUST ORDER). They let us bring in a bottle of wine for a moderate corkage fee, which helped us with our overage! We then hit the craps tables for a couple of hours and headed to bed for our journey home the next day.
By the way, the state of Washington has unbelievably awesome bathrooms. The bathrooms in every one of our rooms except for the Courtyard by Marriott (which was pretty basic) were so great. The bathroom at Northern Quest was the coolest I’ve ever seen. We took pictures and hope to update our bathroom at home to look like a Spokane Washington bathroom!!!
Next Stop: Italy in July!