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Washington Wine

Learn about Washington wine, common tasting notes, where the region is and more ...

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An important winegrowing state increasingly recognized for its high-quality reds and whites, Washington ranks second in production in the U.S. after California. Washington wines continue to gain well-deserved popularity as they garner higher and higher praise from critics and consumers alike.

Washington winemakers draw inspiration mainly from Napa Valley, Bordeaux and the Rhône as well as increasingly from other regions like Spain and Italy. Most viticulture takes place on the eastern side of the state—an arid desert in the rain shadow of the Cascade mountains. Irrigation is made possible by the Columbia River. Temperatures are extreme, with hot and dry summers and cold winters, during which frost can be a risk.

Washington’s wine industry was initially built on Merlot, which remains an important variety to this day, despite having been overtaken in acreage planted by Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. Bordeaux blends and Rhône blends are common as well as single varietal bottlings. Washington reds tend to express a real purity of concentrated fruit. The best examples have a bold richness, seamless texture, plush or powdery tannins and flavors such as licorice, herb, forest floor, espresso and dark chocolate.

In terms of white wine, Riesling is the state’s major success story, producing crisp, aromatic examples with plenty of stone fruit that range from bone dry to lusciously sweet. Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc perform nicely here as well, and Viognier is beginning to pick up steam.

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Washington
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  • Leonetti Cabernet Sauvignon (scuffed label) 1998 Front Bottle Shot
    Leonetti Cabernet Sauvignon (scuffed label) 1998
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WS93
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $135.97
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    135 97
    135 97
    Save $0.00 (0%)
  • Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 1998 Front Label
    Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP96
    • WS94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $189.97
    Try the 2017 Vintage 179 97
    189 97
    189 97
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  • Leonetti Merlot 1998 Front Label
    Leonetti Merlot 1998
    Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE94
    • RP94
    • WS93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $69.99
    Try the 2019 Vintage 109
    69 99
    69 99
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  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Canoe Ridge Estate Vineyard Merlot 1998
    Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WS89
    • RP89
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $25.64
    Try the 2015 Vintage 26 99
    28 49
    25 64
    Save $2.85 (10%)
  • Andrew Will Winery Sorella 1998 Front Label
    Andrew Will Winery Sorella 1998
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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    59 99
    39 99
    Save $20.00 (33%)
  • Leonetti Reserve 1998 Front Label
    Leonetti Reserve 1998
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP96
    • WS92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $199.00
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    199
    199
    Save $0.00 (0%)
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