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 Get the latest word on wine from two expert guides.

Willows Lodge has the rare good fortune to be located in the heart of Woodinville Wine Country, home to more than 100 Washington wineries and tasting rooms. Our Sommeliers, Tony Berkau and Cara De Lavallade, serve our guests as knowledgeable guides to the local wine community and to our nationally acclaimed wine lists at the Barking Frog and Fireside.

SOME OF MY FAVORITES

One of the most common requests that I get as a sommelier at Barking Frog is for something new. Our regular clientele is a savy, tasting room touring bunch, who are loyal to their favorite wineries and even more loyal to their favorite winemakers.  And true wine lovers are always looking to be challenged, to taste something they've never tasted before, to learn and experience and be enlightened.  Though these brands are not new, it shows some of my favorites and ones I hope you enjoy as well.

Cara De Lavallade
Wine Director/Advanced Sommelier

Analemma, Rosé of Pinot Noir
Atavus Vineyard, Columbia River Gorge, Washington  2015

Think we can't grow Pinot Noir in Washington?  Think again!

The Columbia River Gorge AVA is a remarkable anomaly running along our southern border, offering the coolest winegrowing zones in the state.  This gorgeous, copper-tinted rosé is meticulously crafted by a world wanderer turned winemaker.  Organically grown from 50-year old vines, it's refreshingly dry, with notes of strawberry, melon, and tangerine zest.

Antica Terra, Coriolis, Pinot Noir
Willamette Valley, Oregon  2014

Talking to Maggie Harrison about wine reminds you why you love it.  She says, "Much of what I find so compelling about winemaking is that it is wholly and purely aesthetic: beauty for the sake of beauty."

But this wine is more then beauty.  The high aromatics and racy red fruit tinged with cola spice alone make this wine intriguing, satisfying...gulpable.  The icing on the cake is that 100% of profits from the sale of Coriolis go to charity.

Lapostolle, Clos Apalta, Carmènere Blend
Colchagua Valley, Chile   2010

If you're going to drink one Chilean wine, let it be Clos Apalta. From a single plot of 100 year old vines grown in the foothills of the Andes Mountains, this is a world-class wine in the Bordeaux tradition.  A blend of Carmènere, Cabernet, and Merlot, the wine has incredible concentration and structure, with notes of plum, dried fig and blueberry layered over vanilla, cloves, and white pepper.

This wine is an experience - don't miss it!

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