As the Beatles sang, “All You Need is Love.” I think they might have mean to add wine and chocolate too. Love, wine and chocolate – three things that calm chaos, diffuse differences, and elicit emotion. Nectar Tasting Room and the Spokane Winery Association have the perfect opportunity for you to impress your sweetheart for Valentine’s Day. Join us (and 19 other participating locations) for Spokane’s ValenWine Weekend, February 11-12.
Saturday and Sunday, 11am – 5pm each winery will be showcasing wines paired with chocolate. At Nectar Tasting Room each of our five showcased wines will be on sale and we will have FREE samples from Pixie Dust Chocolates and Sweet Frostings Cupcakes.
Looking for love? We’ve got you covered. Your wine loving lover will love the ValenWine pack of our custom Valentine’s wine label, flowers from Just Roses Plus and a chocolate pack from Pixie Dust Chocolates. Get all three for only $49.99.
Spice up your evening with a bottle of “Shameless Hussy” Barbera or “Good in Bed” Sparkling; 25% off two or more.
Need some divine sweet port to go with your dark chocolate. Enjoy the amazing Terra Blanca Port Forte.
Tasting fees apply ($5) and as always Club Nectar members taste for free.
Download the Spokane Winery Association map here
The Spokane Winery Association is an alliance of 19 Spokane-area wineries that work to promote regional wine products. The Spokane Winery Association’s mission is to promote communication and interaction between the wineries of Spokane, to promote economic development through winery tourism and to increase the awareness and profile of the wineries in the Spokane area. Members of the alliance produce an eclectic blend of distinctly Washington wines ranging from intense, rich reds and crisp whites to complex blends. For more information visit www.spokanewineries.net.
08 Oct 2010
Spokane wineries are receiving high praise in the national press of late. International wine critic Robert Parker spoke highly of Arbor Crest in a recent publication. Caterina Winery was featured in Wine Enthusiast’s Best Buy list. Townshend Cellars will be in an upcoming issue of Sunset Magazine. Robert Karl and Barrister were recognized as 4 star wineries by Paul Gregutt. The list goes on. Have you experienced the 18 wineries that dot the Spokane wine landscape?
Take a tour of the local wineries. Most are open. Visit this link for hours, reviews, wine recommendations, videos and more. http://drinknectar.com/spokane-wine-tour/
Crush Rush 2010: The Spokane Winery Association invites you to join the CRUSH RUSH. Join the fun with a wine scavenger hunt across all 17 Spokane association wineries. The hunt continues through October 17. Details available at Spokane Wine Magazine; download the map and scavenger hunt list >> http://bit.ly/clIAGB
Friday, October 8
Whitestone Winery – Live music and food from 6 to 9 pm, featuring the music of Michael Dwyer and a selection of appetizers from Williams Seafood; 111 S. Cedar – Stay tuned for the release of “Scared to Pieces” the new Halloween inspired blend of Cab, Cab Franc and Merlot
Riverpark Square Arbor Crest – Join Spokane favorite, Dan Conrad as he plays a wide variety of modern mainstream, soul and classic rock covers, as well as some originals. Stop in and listen to this incredible local musician from 6:00 to 9:00pm.
BeGin at the MAC – Enjoy BeGin at the Mac with Buffalo Death Beam, Golden Hills Brewery, Townshend Wine, Victor’s Hummus, and open galleries! This is your last chance to see Harold Balazs at BeGin! 6pm
Wine Styles – TGIF Wine tasting, 2 Acre Wine Company is pouring some splendid wines for everyone on Friday! Stop by for the tasting! 8801 N Indian Trail Rd
Rocket Market – Casual environment in which to taste some classic German Oktoberfest beers and a few of the current American-made versions. Relax, drink beer, and snack on some Germanic style beer food! 7pm. 343.2253; $16 726 E 43rd Ave. $16
Vino Wine Shop: Nicolas Cole Cellars along with Lullaby Winery – a double header for Friday’s tasting. 2:00-5:30pm; 222 S. Washington
Davenport Hotel: Live music from 8pm – midnight
Left Bank Wine Bar: Live music starting at 8pm, no cover –60 wines by the glass and a wonderfully eclectic atmosphere – 108 N Washington.
2nd Friday Art Walk in CDA – Every second Friday, from April – December, stroll through downtown Coeur d’Alene and visit participating art galleries, shops, and restaurants with your friends and family. This is a family-friendly, free event! Come and join us from 5 to 8 pm.
Saturday, October 9
Huckleberry’s Wine Tasting – In the Bistro with Steve Busby from Caterina Winery. Awardwinning reds and whites! $5 per flight of 5 wines; 2-4pm; 926 S. Monroe
Oktoberfest at WineStyles – Bratwurst, German Sausage, Pretzels and Cheese with all the mustard and Saurkraut you could dream of! There is a plethora of German beers to wash it all down! Celebrate the German way in style- extra points for those who come in Leiderhosen. 12-7pm; 8801 N. Indian Trail Rd.
Bottles on Argonne – Mike Scott from Vinum Wine Importing will be pouring samples and providing a history of Rhone wines. Rhone wines originated in France and today many winemakers from around the world enjoy producing Rhone varietal wines. Perhaps you have sampled Rhone wines before and are a big fan or perhaps this will be your first experience with Rhones; 2-5PM; 3319 N Argonne
Rocket Market: Saturday drop in tasting from 4-7pm: Wine maker Matthew Loso (Matthew Cellars) creates “magic in a bottle” for this new winery! 726 E. 43rd Ave
Left Bank Wine Bar – Live music. While you’re there ask Jen or Lauren to make you a special wine flight. They’ll surprise your taste buds. 108 N. Washington
Vino 15th Anniversary Sale – EVERYTHING will be on sale Saturday – minimum 10% discount with savings up to 25%. Enjoy tastings, raffles and prizes. Celebrate 15 incredible years and THANK you for supporting Vino!
Sunday, October 10
Get out to a winery! – Always a handful of Spokane wineries open. Enjoy! Trezzi, Townshend, Lone Canary, Mountain Dome, Latah Creek, Arbor Crest, Knipprath and Caterina are open.
- Arbor Crest and Chocolate Apothecary (October 14)– At the Cliff House enjoy pairing wine with the amazing chocolates of Chocolate Apothecary. This event is a private tasting so reservations are required. Reserve a place, please call 509-927-9463. $24 per person
- Paul Gregutt at Arbor Crest (October 17) - Seattle Times Wine Adviser, Paul Gregutt, will be visiting the Cliff House on Sunday, October 17th to sign his new book, Washington Wines & Wineries, Second Edition. 1-5pm
- Townshend Cellar at Sante Restaurant (October 24) – Nine courses guaranteed to push the envelope on food as you know it. RSVP to Anthony at Santé – Make your reservation by 10/10 and receive $30 off the dinner! 315.4613; $120; 5:30pm
- Epicurean Delight (November 12) – One of the signature events of the year. More than 1000 people enjoyed last years event to benefit the Inland Northwest Blood Center. Enjoy fine dining, wine and microbrews at the Spokane Convention Center < Nectar Wine Blog is a proud sponsor
- Cork & Keg (November 13) – Mirabeau Park Hotel; $45 http://www.spokanecorkandkeg.com/
- Save the date for Spokane Winery Association Holiday Wine Festival (Nov 19-21)
14 Jun 2010
A food revolution is cooking in Spokane. A fun and innovative new social scene is hitting the underground providing local residents with unique opportunities to experience culinary creations and social libations. Ghetto Gourmand is bringing underground dining to Spokane. From their web site: “One night. Unlimited possibilities. An experience unlike anything you’ve ever enjoyed before. Become a ghetto gourmand and enter the world of underground dining.”
How does it work? Ghetto Gourmand is a travelling dinner experience that is limited to a small number of guests. Dinner guests are provided the secret location and password one or two days prior to the event. Each event features a theme and four –six course theme appropriate meal. Ticket prices can vary, but from what I’ve seen $60-80 per person seems standard. Guest chefs, musicians and artists provide something truly unique for the Spokane area.
DrinkNectar is not a food blog, but I was invited to the launch event which featured some of the area’s finest in media and social elite. The theme of the launch was the “Roarin’ Twenties.” Everyone in attendance was dressed up with several dressed in period appropriate attire. Being that this was the host’s first event in Spokane, there were expected “bumps” and opportunities for improvement. In all, it looked like 60-80 people were in attendance for the launch. Check out the pictures. Photo credits go to Ghetto Gourmand, Sip of Spokane and Angela Monson.
The event was at the Muzzy Mansion in Spokane’s West Central neighborhood. This 1890’s built home has been beautifully restored and provided a fantastic back drop for the event. Jazz music and champagne greeted our entry and elegant ladies and dapper gentlemen assisted us in being transported back in time. Holding the event in a home provided its unique challenges. As the guests arrived and food was served the temperature indoors soared pushing people to congregate on the lawn. With the setting of the sun, courses three and four brought people back indoors. The venue, while spectacular, seemed to corner people off into various locations in the building hindering interaction.
The six course menu was French cuisine driven with liver pate, foie gras brioche, cognac mornet sauced mushroom ravioli, pan seared scallops, cognac glazed pork belly, and a huckleberry puff pastry for dessert. I am not a foodie, but I did appreciate the opportunity to experience something unique in Spokane. I have four observations about the food (one of which I’ll expand upon in the next section).
- The delay between dishes was long. I would assume that the kitchen space the old home limited the ability to deliver the dishes quickly.
- The menu could have potentially been fairly polarizing. With liver, and mushrooms covering three of the five main courses, many people could potentially be turned away. I would think when planning a menu like this you would want to be more appeasing to a broader palate.
- There wasn’t really any dish that made me go “wow.” The Seared Sonoma Foie Gras with pence peach and candied apricots was nice as was the Cognac Glazed Berkshire Pork Belly, but neither were memorable.
- The menu order / wine pairing order was a little odd (let me explain in the next section).
I’ll start by disclosing that I was asked to provide wine selections for the dinner. My suggestions were sparkling wine for menu items 2 and 4 (or a Chardonnay, preferably a crisp one) and Pinot Noir for menu items 1, 3 and 5. I realize that finding the perfect wine may have posed a problem for the organizers and I can’t fault them for trying. I actually applaud them for making the effort to ask the question. I think where the struggle came in was the partnership with a local company who provided a big bold red blend and the overall order of the pairings. We went from sparkling wine to medium bodied red to Chardonnay and then to the big bold red. For future events where wine is provided I would recommend paying attention to the order of the pairings and move people from light to heavy with a potential ending of sweet. It would also be important to keep the temperature of the wine in mind. The facility was quite warm which made the reds overly hot (my guess would be 75+ degrees). When in doubt, chill your reds and allow them to come up to room temperature.
In all, I had a fantastic time. Life is meant to be enjoyed with friends and in the end, it was the people I experienced the evening with that made it most enjoyable. Would I attend again (as a paid guest)? Good question. If I were dropping $80 a pop on an event, I would want a peek at the menu to assist in my decision. According to their website, future events will be ‘bring your own alcohol.’ Knowing the menu would assist in selection here as well. I also hope that the service between courses is quicker and the venue is more conducive to interacting.
The organizers are onto something fun for Spokane residents and I wish them the best of success. A tweaks here and there will make this a grand event in which people will be anxiously awaiting the next secret rendezvous. Events are already scheduled for June, July and August. Visit their website for all the details. Become a fan of Ghetto Gourmand on Facebook for pictures and updates.
- June 21: Mid-Summer Nights Dream
- July 24: Eat Love Pray
- August 14: Steamy Summer Nights
09 Apr 2010
Spokane is becoming a destination for wine and many wine events are happening every weekend. Stay connected here at DrinkNectar.com with a complete list of activities for you to wind (or wine) down with every week. Follow the local activity on Facebook too at www.facebook.com/drinknectar
Do you know of a wine event that is not listed? Email me firstname.lastname@example.org
Spokane Tasting Room Tour – Most Spokane tasting rooms are open. Check out this tasting room map for contact information, hours of operation and video reviews.
Friday April 9
BeGin at the MAC – Hot Club of Spokane plays from 6-8pm. Free admission for members, $7 for non-members. Museum of Arts and Culture
Davenport Hotel – Live music from 8pm – midnight 20% off all food and drink if you mention you’re a Facebook fan.
Left Bank Wine Bar – Live music ever Friday starting at 8pm, 60 wines by the glass
Saturday April 10
Rocket Market – Saturday drop in tastings, complimentary pours 3-6pm
Robert Karl Cellars – Pouring in Moscow, ID for Harmony Event, tasting room still open Noon – 4pm
Nodland Cellars – The tasting room is open Noon – 4pm at 11616 E Montgomery Rd.
Sunday April 11
The Melting Pot – National Cheese Fondue Day – The Melting Pot of Spokane, WA will be donating $10.00 from every cheese fondue sold that day to Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital (including cheese that comes with a Big Night Out!). Call or go to https://www.reserveit.net/guest/dining/MPSpokane to secure a reservation today! Mike Scott from Lone Canary Winery will be our “Guest Sommelier” for the evening!
For Local Wine Event information in Spokane and other cities, check out LocalWineEvents.com
April 16 – Whitestone Tasting Room Anniversary 111 S. Cedar – Celebrate the one year anniversary of the Whitestone tasting room in Spokane!
April 17 – Festival of Wine and Flowers The Festival of Wine and Flowers is Spokane’s most prestigious tasting and auction of ultra-premium Washington wines. This annual fundraising event supports the comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Institute provides to adults and children throughout our region. $125 for wine and auction; $200 for Winemakers Dinner
April 21 – Lone Canary – Next to Last Wednesdays with Mike Scott. First 40 people to register will have the opportunity to help Mike create a new red blend to be released in the fall. 6-9pm, $25 per person
April 23 – Latah Creek Monarch Red Release Latah Creek Wine Cellars is proud to present Monarch Red, a handcrafted blend of Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah with an engaging new label by Edward Gilmore. Event is from 5-7pm at the Latah Creek tasting room.
April 24 – Nodland Cellars Limited Release Nodland Cellars is releasing a very small production 2006 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon from Seven Hills Vineyards. Only 40 cases have been produced (480 bottles). The release is for mailing list people only. To get on their mailing list, stop by the tasting room April 10 or 17 and buy a bottle of their current release. Chances are this will sell out in one night.