Tag Archives: Celilo

Ross Andrew 2016 Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris

Pinot Gris Impulse

Ross Andrew 2016 Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris, Columbia Gorge, Washington

Fellow wine lovers, it’s a nice sunny day today and I’m in the mood for a refreshing white wine. You don’t see me featuring many Washington State Pinot Gris, but when I find a good one I commit to it. I think the only two we’ve offered on Impulse have been the Nine Hats Pinot Gris and the Ross Andrew Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris, and it’s even been a while since we’ve worked with either of those.

Personally, I’ve been a fan of Ross Andrew Mickel’s wines for a decade now. He used to be the assistant winemaker at Betz Family Winery, back in the early 2000’s, and is an all around great guy. When I was working at Matthews Cellars in 2006/2007, Ross would occasionally come by to borrow a piece of equipment. We were among the few in Woodinville with top of the line winemaking gear back then, so many smaller wineries would come to our facility to use our stuff. Because of this, I had several good opportunities to chat with Ross, even work with him a bit in the cellar. I always found him to be very knowledgeable and passionate about wine.

Ross Andrew Winery 2016 Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris $18.99 (Regularly $24)

Sitting at an elevation of 1,370 feet in the cooler climate of the Columbia Gorge region of Washington State, Celilo Vineyard is well suited for the production of refreshing and crisp white wines. Ross Andrew has been doing a bang-up job with Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris for several years now, truly expressing its sense of place. It comes from old vines, some older than 43 years, and they make certain to hand-harvest amidst the cool of the morning, so as to keep the newly picked grapes as fresh as possible.

Ross Andrew ages the Celilo Pinot Gris in stainless steel vessels for 4 months, with no oak, so as to maintain the bright and vibrant nature of the grape. During that time, the wine is kept on its lees, so as add a supplementary layer of complexity. It’s an invigorating wine, with just a hint of sweetness in the middle, and a clean dry finish. Starting with clean and pretty fruits of anjou pear, Tuscan melon, white peach, lemon zest and tangerine peel, it moves towards hints of hazelnut, kiwi, and freshly plucked jasmine. The palate has a little bit of residual sugar, which makes for a beautifully viscous wine, and everything is very nicely balanced. An excellent companion to light seafood dishes such as prawns, ceviche, and oysters.

Click here to order the Ross Andrew Celilo Pinot Gris

Ross Andrew 2016 Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris

Ross Andrew 2016 Celilo Vineyard Pinot Gris

Region: Columbia Gorge

Vineyard(s): Celilo Vineyard

Grape(s): Pinot Gris

Aging: 4 Months on Less in Stainless Steel

Drinkability: Now through 2018

Body: Medium

Alcohol: 13.8% by volume

Drink This if you Like: Nine Hats Pinot Gris, Alsatian Pinot Gris

Food Pairing: Prawns, Ceviche, Oysters

Production: 950 cases



Savage Grace Cab Franc, Chard, Riesling

Balanced Impulse

Savage Grace 2014 Cabernet Franc, 2013 Chardonnay, 2014 Riesling

Fellow wine lovers, I’m really excited to bring to you a fresh batch of wines from Savage Grace Winery. In the almost 2 years of Impulse Wine, Savage Grace has really become a favorite of mine, and based on your feedback it seems that you agree. Michael Savage’s wines have been outstanding, right from the beginning, and it feels like they’re getting even better with each new vintage. The wines he makes perfectly live up to the name Savage Grace, showing the raw and uninhibited side of each grape he vinifies, while displaying an abundance of finesse and humility in each bottle. These single vineyard wines are truly world class, and without a doubt some of best made in Washington State. Below are three of the latest vintages, which have not yet been fully released, putting us among the first to have access to them. I’m also offering a 10% mixed case discount, for those who’d like to mix and match 12 bottles or more of the Savage Grace wines.

Savage Grace 2014 Cabernet Franc $23.99 (Regularly $26)

Some are saying this is the most well made Cabernet Franc from Washington right now, and I would easily agree that it’s the best Cabernet Franc I’ve had in the last year or so. It really captures the essence of the grape – where many others try to make a Cabernet Franc which is hardly discernible from a Cabernet Sauvignon. This is a lighter style, weighing in with medium body, and displaying all the classic spicy, dusty, qualities which can be expected from this variety. Michael Savage verily aims to style it after the wines of of Chinon, the most famous of French Cabernet Franc, in the Loire Valley, and really hits the mark. His wine shows much of the traditional earthiness of the Old World, backed by the purity of fruit which Washington so uniquely provides.

Aged in 100% neutral French oak, so there’s no heavy oaky notes, this Cab Franc starts out pretty on the nose, with a bit of flower petals and hints of bubble gum, parallel to cigar box aromatics. The palate is very smooth, again medium bodied, and elegantly structured with nice acid. There are flavors of cedar, black cherry fruit leather, Chambord Liqueur, and fresh blueberries, alongside a hint of rich dark potting soil and rhubarb.
Savage Grace 14 CF
Click here to order the Savage Grace Cab Franc

Region: Rattlesnake Hills AVA, Washington State
Vineyard: Copeland Vineyard
Grape: Cabernet Franc
Aging: 5 Months in Neutral French Oak Barrels
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 13.7% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Chinon, Bourgueil, Loire Valley Cabernet Franc
Food Pairings: Well Seasoned Meats, Jerked Beef, Herbed Lamb
Production: 260 cases

Savage Grace 2013 Celilo Vineyard Chardonnay $23.99 (Regularly $26)

This Chardonnay really knocked my socks off with how it continuously opens up with unctuous layers of rich flavor. The fruit comes from.40 year old vines from Celilo Vineyard in the Columbia Gorge, which is quickly rising to the top of everyone’s lists as one of the best Chardonnay vineyards in the Washington. As with all Savage Grace wines, this is a more finessed style, fermented and aged in 50% Neutral French Oak and 50% Stainless Steel. I would categorize it as falling somewhere in between White Burgundies such as Premier Cru Chablis and upper echelon Macon-Villages.

The wines starts out great, then after several hours, it pretty well melts me into my seat with its smooth and creamy texture. The nose has a toasty quality like pan popped popcorn, lightly buttered, and hints of baked lemon. The palate is very silky, with notes of crisp Fuji Apples, hints of peanut, clean minerality, and bright acidity. It quickly opens up to an essences of freshly baked brioche, a little guava, Anjou Pears, and dried white flowers.

Again, one of my favorite Chardonnays of recent memory, and it gets 91 Points from Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine, where it was selected as an “Editor’s Choice”.

Click here to order the Savage Grace Chardonnay
Savage Grace 13 CH
Region: Columbia Gorge AVA, Washington State
Vineyard: Celilo Vineyard
Grape: Chardonnay
Aging: 50% Neutral French Oak Barrels 50% Stainless Steel for 6 month, 50% ML
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 13.9% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Premier Cru Chablis, Macon-Villages
Press: 91 Points from Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine, and Editor’s Choice
Food Pairings: Cheese and Crackers, Halibut with Cream Sauce
Production: 165 cases

Savage Grace 2014 Riesling $19.99 (Regularly $21)

This Riesling has been turning heads all over town. I was recently at a casual wine tasting with several top wine professional from Seattle, and from all over the country, where this was poured alongside a sampling of other top flight Washington wines. Very quickly it became obvious that the Savage Grace Riesling had stolen the show, as everyone was raving about it, and it became the first bottle finished, as everyone went back for second tastes of it. On top of that, it’s rumored that this Riesling is up for an award, a pretty big one, though it’s not yet revealed what.

The wine features just the slightest hint of sweetness, while staying mostly dry, with a very crisp and light finish. It’s full of orange blossom and tangerine skin aromatics, with hints of classic Riesling petrol notes. It gives a tingling hint of spritz on the tongue, followed with a tang of lime zest, stoney minerals, juicy yellow apples, hints of spicy ginger, and lots of vibrant acidity on the finish.

Click here to order the Savage Grace Riesling
Savage Grace 14 RI
Region: Columbia Gorge AVA, Washington State
Vineyard: Underwood Mountain Vineyard
Grape: Riesling
Aging: 100% Stainless Steel
Drinkability: Now through 2021
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 10.5% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Alsatian Riesling, Rheingau Riesling
Food Pairings: Oysters with Mignonette, Spiced Duck, Asian Cuisine
Production: 171 cases



Savage Impulse – Savage Grace Wines

Fellow wine lovers, I just tasted another of Washington’s up and coming boutiques. Savage Grace is a brand new winery focused on showcasing the state’s top terroirs, and they’re doing it at down to earth prices. Tasting through the lineup, it’s no challenge to see why wine writer Paul Gregutt gives them “A sincere bravo! for a job well done.”

The name is derived from owner Michael Savage and his wife Grace, but it represents much more than that. The Savage in the name is that Michael maintains, even nurtures, the primal aspects of the grape and the sites from which he sources them, with no desire to tame them whatsoever. The grace is demonstrated within the wines’ lower alcohol, minimal use of oak, and all around balance. These are the most affordable single vineyard wines I’ve seen coming from flagship sites like Red Willow and Celilo. I like the wines so much, and they’re such a great value that I’ve decided to offer the whole line up. Also, for the first time ever, I’m offering a 10% discount on a mixed case of any of the wines from this email offer. Any order of 12 bottles or more of these wines will get the 10% savings. Our shopping cart system doesn’t support mixed case discounts, so I assure you that I will apply the discount myself manually after you’ve made your order, and you’ll get a receipt showing it.

Savage Grace 2012 Sauvignon Blanc, Red Willow Vineyard $15.99

You may have conjectured based on past offerings that Red Willow is one of my favorite vineyards in Washington. There aren’t a lot of Sauvignon Blancs from the site, and those that are available usually weigh in at $5-10 more than the Savage Grace iteration. It features the complexities of a top Washington vineyard and at the same time reminds me of the elegance of France’s Loire Valley. It’s has integrated citrus qualities, a hint of birch, balanced by acidity and minerality, and it’s a perfect companion for shellfish as we dive into one of the best seasons for fresh oysters. Just 71 cases were made of this one.

There are only 5 total cases available of this this wine
Region: Yakima Valley AVA
Vineyard: Red Willow Vineyard Les Vignes de Marcoux
Alcohol: 12.7% abv
Production: 71 cases
Click here to order the Sauv Blanc

Savage Grace 2012 “Grace” Chardonnay, Celilo Vineyard $19.99

Coming from one of my favorite Chardonnay vineyards in the state, the “Grace” features everything I love about the grape. Old Vine Chardonnay combined with very restrained usage of oak results in a wine with a lot of flavor without being overbearing. Juicy apples, wet stones, and a hint of brioche make this an outstanding pairing for a succulent piece of Halibut. There were only 83 cases of the Chardonnay made

There are only 2 cases available of the “Grace” Chard
Region: Columbia Gorge AVA
Vineyard: Celilo Vineyard
Alcohol: 13.3% abv
Production: 83 cases
Click here to order the Chard

Savage Grace 2012 Riesling, Underwood Mountain Vineyard $16.99

One of Washington’s claims to fame, no other state commands the sort of international respect that we do when it comes to Riesling. Underwood Mountain Vineyard has been real strong on my radar lately, as I’ve seen many great wines from burgeoning wineries sourcing from here. This Riesling is off dry, with a hint of residual sugar, which is rounded out perfectly by just the right amount of acidity. Classic notes of white flowers, lime, and honey make me want to enjoy it with freshly caught king crab. Michael made only 95 cases of the Riesling

We have 4 cases available.
Region: Columbia Gorge AVA
Vineyard: Underwood Mountain
Alcohol: 10.5% abv
Production: 95 cases
Click here to order the Riesling

Savage Grace 2012 Cabernet Franc, Copeland Vineyard $21.99
SavageImpulse CF
My stand out favorite (I’m drinking it right now) is the Cab Franc. I’m always on the hunt for a bottle just like this one, ripe enough to be expressive, but not so ripe that you won’t distinguish it from a Cabernet Sauvignon. There are notes of pomegranate and raspberries, hints of dried leaves and dark potting soil, finished with black and green peppercorns. Great with roast beef and cured meats. This wine is not yet released to the public by the winery, so I’m excited to be the first to offer it to you. Michael Savage produced just 81 cases

We have just 4 cases available of this Cabernet Franc
Region: Rattlesnake Hills AVA (Yakima Valley)
Vineyard: Copeland Vineyard
Alcohol: 12.5% abv
Production: 81 cases
Click here to order the Cab Franc