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Cork Dork: Wine Auction Raises $1.5 Million for Children’s Hospital

Plus, two Kirkland restaurants land on Wine Spectator’s “List.”

Wine in moderation is good for the health of adults, according to Seattle surgeon Richard Baxter.

“(Wine) has remarkable anti-aging properties and there is powerful scientific evidence that it holds the key to preventing everything from cancer to cavities,” said Baxter, cosmetic physician and author of Age Gets Better with Wine.

During the three-day stretch of Aug. 8-20, adults drinking wine at  were good for the healthcare of children in the Northwest region. The 24th annual  and its associated events in Woodinville and around the Puget Sound area raised over $1.5 million, with proceeds benefiting Seattle Children’s Hospital and the Washington Wine Education Foundation.

The festivities included a Picnic & Barrel Auction at Chateau Ste. Michelle on Thursday, Aug. 18, private winemaker dinners around the Puget Sound region on Friday, Aug. 19, and The Covey Run around the Sammamish Valley and The Wine Gala at Chateau Ste. Michelle on Saturday, Aug. 20.

“It is an honor to serve as co-chair for the Auction of Washington Wines,” said Rick Small, 2011 auction co-chair, and founder and winemaker of Woodward Canyon Winery. “Year after year, I am amazed by the incredible generosity of Washington winemakers, growers, and the wine-loving community.”

The highest selling auction lots included a one-week cruise on a three-bedroom penthouse aboard The World, a privately owned yacht, with that sold for $25,000. Dinner for 10 at Col Solare on Red Mountain with Chateau Ste. Michelle President and CEO Ted Baseler sold twice for $20,000 each. Dinner for 12 at RN74 prepared by James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Mina and paired with Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon sold for $18,000.

The Raise-the-Paddle portion of the auction raised $500,000 for uncompensated care at Seattle Children’s Hospital.

Barking Frog, Italianissimo Wine Lists Make The List

Woodinville’s  and  were among the restaurants recognized for their wine programs in the 30th anniversary edition of the Restaurant Awards by the Wine Spectator. Both Barking Frog and Italianissimo earned the Award of Excellence for their wine programs.

“It’s an honor to be recognized as a wine destination,” said Jennifer Schmitt, co-wine director at Barking Frog. “We make it a point to talk about wine and Washington wine and how it pairs with the food at Barking Frog.”

Barking Frog’s wine list includes 500 unique labels and over 1,000 bottles, much of it from Washington and in particular from the 70-plus wineries in Woodinville. Italianissimo’s list features Washington, California and Italian wines, among others.

and  in Kirkland and  in Redmond also received the Award of Excellence.

Wine Pick of the Week

Spork, you have met your match; the weekly food/wine matching recommendations by yours truly, Fork & Cork Dork, combining the best of Woodinville wines with the Northwest bounty. Eliminate grade school cafeteria food trauma with weekly food/wine matching suggestions as wine is best enjoyed with food expressive of its origin.

The initial recommendation is the newly released 2010 , about 70 percent Pinot Blanc with Pinot Gris, Riesling and Gewürztraminer completing the balance of the blend. The fruit was sourced from vineyards in Oregon’s Willamette Valley and the adjacent Columbia Gorge AVA in Washington.

“I wanted to marry two areas closely related in temperature, fruit quality and acidity,” said Ross Andrew Winery founder and winemaker Ross Mickel of the unusual multi-state blend. “ I wanted to do the best that we can with these two areas.”

The ethereal nose of white flowers, kumquat & orange zest, leads to a mid-palate of guava and white peaches. The main attraction, however, is the racy Meyer lemon zest and lime acidity on the lengthy finish. Over 700 cases were produced so there should be plenty available for $16 at the Ross Andrew Winery tasting room by the Hollywood School House. The wine is also available at Esquin Wine Merchants in Seattle and Whole Foods in Bellevue.

A chilled glass of this white wine blend pairs nicely with  drunken chicken, a rice bowl dish with crispy on the outside, tender on the inside hunks of chicken served with a hot & slightly sweet sauce and smothered by a gently fried sunny side up egg. The fruit neutralizes the heat in the sauce. The acidity cuts through the sweetness of the sauce and the creaminess of the egg extending the pleasure of the perfect marriage of food and wine. Simply seasoned (salt, pepper, dried herbs) grilled pork or chicken on a hot summer evening is another recommended food pairing.


Julie Arnan August 27, 2011 at 08:26 PM
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