02 Dec 2009
Gonzaga Bulldogs; once the cinderella of college Basketball. Washington State Cougars; once the cellar dwellers of the PAC-10 conference. Both teams are now solid contenders with Gonzaga making the NCAA conference for 10 straight seasons and WSU reaching the Sweet 16 in 2007. Tonight, Dec 2, they battle in Spokane at the MAC.
Spokane wine is an underdog among the growing Washington wine explosion. WSU, in the Palouse, and just a short drive to the prestigious Walla Walla wine region. Tonight they battle in the drinknectar challenge!
WSU is represented by their new head coach, the top scorer in the nation Klay Thompson and Cougar Crest Winery. The 2005/6 Bordeaux style blend (with Syrah). Winemaker Deborah Hansen offers a smooth smelling and tasting blend that give the Cougars a strong showing. The wine lack a lot of intrigue and character but has a nice finish. Proceeds from this wine go to support ICU, neurosurgery, and trauma doctors who help give life to winemaker Deborah Hansen’s daughter.
The Zags are represented by 10 years of winning tradition, the 2nd winningest active coach, a young inexperienced team wanting to prove themselves again, and Grande Ronde Cellars. Grande Ronde procures their grapes from the Walla Walla region but calls home 902 W. 2nd Ave in Spokane. The 2005 Cellar Red is a traditional Bordeaux style blend. The sniff is more dynamic and the sip is more floral, perfume, and spice.
Grande Ronde Cellars 2005 Cellar Red
- The Swirl – Medium tone with a very nice purple jewel tone. Moderately see through
- The Sniff – Immediate sense of clove and cinnamon spice. The berry comes through on the back-end. A slight floral element presents itself
- The Sip – Still spicy on the sip with a good interesting flavor. Dark berry fruits begin to present themselves and the finish lingers for quite some time. Tannins, alcohol and acid are not dominant. My wife noted a perfume / soap taste.
- Price to Value Ratio $$$ The wine has a wide flavor profile and gives the drinker a lot to consider but in the end there is too much perfume as it finishes.
Cougar Crest 2005/6 Dedication Three
- The Swirl: The Cougar Crest is slightly more cloudy but still mildly translucent. Lack of legs for low residual sugar.
- The Sniff: Not as much aromatic presence on this wine. More fruity with cherry being the most predominant.
- The Swirl: Good smooth flavor profile. The wine lacks a lingering finish but presents a hint of chocolate at the end. This wine has slightly more acid but less tannin and moderate alcohol.
- Price to Value Ratio $$$+ With a more easy drinking feel and an overall stronger quality, the Cougar Crest is the better value for $20.
Led by senior Matt Bouldin, Gonzaga overcomes a 14 point deficit to beat the Cougars 74 to 69. Once again the hustle, strong coaching winning experience prevail. As far as the wine goes the final decision rests with you. If I were to buy another bottle for another game, I would choose the Cougar Crest only because of the mild flavor profile. Like I said in the video, if you are after a more dynamic taste experience, then go with the Grande Ronde. Great showing by Spokane and the Palouse. Basketball game goes to Gonzaga, wine goes to Cougar (Crest).