the further adventures of

Mike Pirnat

a leaf on the wind

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Washington State: Parts 7 and N+1


Timeless Legs
Originally uploaded by mikepirnat.

After Liz and I cooked breakfast I and accomplished a car-packing miracle (I knew all those years of Tetris would come in handy!), we found ourselves running a bit early for our first appointment in Prosser, and finding that we were on a strip of wineries, we stopped at the place next door on a whim--Willow Crest Winery, home of very young winemaker Victor Palencia, Mexican immigrant and graduate of Walla Walla's enology program. Victor started studying winemaking at 17, and eventually received special dispensation from the state to allow him to taste the results of his labors; however, until that time he was forced to rely entirely on his sense of smell, and that effort has really honed his skills at an unusually early age, and he's producing surprisingly good wines that bely their modest price points. I especially enjoyed his Chateauneuf-du-Pape style "XIII," his celebration of finally turning 21. He's well on his way to being a formidable talent--my head spins to imagine what he'll be producing in ten years.

Next up was an appointment at Thurstone Wolfe, about which I ended up with very mixed feelings. We lunched at the patio there, then I ran around to get some photos of topiaries in a field, the under-construction Winemaker's Loft (a sort of winery tasting room strip mall), and an abandoned LEGO. Then it was back into the car for the drive back to Seattle.

We did a bit of running around, visiting Luna Park to pick up some coffee, and West Seattle Cellars to ship some of the week's bounty back home. Then it was back to Jenny and Mike's to have an impromptu dinner party and wine tasting to help us clear out all the bottles we'd brought back from Hedges. As the evening wound down, not even Jaden the cat could keep Mike and I from catching up, finally turning in around five AM once the wine was gone and the morning birds were chirping... The results speak for themselves.

And if you have been following along the whole way, then you already know the rest.

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