A number of years ago, our group sauntered into a small little tasting room at the end of Main Street near Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington.  We had been tasting wine all day and the tasting room of Cadaretta Winery was going to be our last stop.  The interior of the room was incredibly inviting and the staff truly made our day.  Being completely impressed with everything we tasted, especially the SBS (Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, a blend that changes by year), one member of our group joined the wine club.

A few weeks ago, my friend sent an email inviting me to a truly unique wine tasting at a private aircraft hangar at Boeing Field.  When I saw the invitation, it was from Cadaretta.  Well, … sign me up!  No wine “flights” for us that night, just incredible tastings including their newest release.

Alan Turnidge of Erin Air graciously offered not only their hangar, but also tours of their Citation VII.  As we enjoyed both domestic and international cheese, crepes and brisket, we could browse the few planes in the hangar and watch the hustle and bustle of Boeing Field.

The owners of Cadaretta Winery, Kris Middleton and her husband Tony Lupino, hosted the event.  The main event was for the winemaker, Kendall Mix, to showcase his new release for a vineyard that is just now producing its first vintage.  The 2013 Southwind Red Blend of Cabernet, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Merlot was wonderful (as were all the other wines).  The wine has aromas of blackberry, grilled mead, molasses, vanilla, and toasted oak.  This is a mouthful of rich flavors of black fruits and spice.

Cadaretta Winery
I was surprised to find that Kendall had been in the wine making business in Washington State almost from its inception.  He started in 1993 with Chateau Ste. Michelle and then moved on to Canoe Ridge, among others.  His blending of varietals in each of the wines tasted was wonderful.  I am, and always will be, very particular to their Syrahs.  In fact, it was hard for me to choose between their 2013 Cadaretta Syrah and their 2013 Windthrow blend.  The Windthrow had more Mourvedre and less Syrah, but I think I still leaned more toward the heavier Syrah blended with Mourvedre and also a bit of Grenache and Viognier to suit my taste.

For those folks that attended this hangar party, (and no matter which Cadaretta wines you preferred), it was a “wheels up night” for a great wine flight!

NOTE: I met Jan Ennis in Virginia where we were in college. Now a Seattle resident (but a Southerner at heart), Jan enjoys good wine both at home and during his many international travels. Enjoy previous articles about his fascinating wine experiences in Walla Walla and Italy

Cheers! ~ Cindy

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