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Winemaker Dinner Series announced for Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine – The World of Merlot

ByJoe Connector

Mar 18, 2015

Celebrate Walla Walla Wine logoTickets are on sale now for the Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine – The World of Merlot Saturday night winemaker dinner series. Participants can choose from one of 10 intimate dinners held at locations throughout the Valley. It’s an exclusive opportunity to wine and dine with winemakers and principals while enjoying food prepared by some of Walla Walla’s most celebrated chefs.

“The winemaker dinner series offers patrons the chance to spend one-on-one time with our Valley’s winemakers,” said Duane Wollmuth, Executive Director of the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance. “The dinner locations range from wineries set above vineyards, to urban downtown spaces and restaurants – providing a range of experiences to choose from.”

The winemaker dinner series is the grand finale of the three-day Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine event, which begins the evening of Thursday, June 18 with a vintage pour tasting at Dunham Cellars featuring a limited number of Walla Walla Valley wines from the 2008 vintage or earlier. The following morning of June 19, internationally-known wine critic Stephen Tanzer and Master Sommelier Fred Dame will serve as keynote speakers for a kick-off session at the historic Gesa Power House Theatre in downtown Walla Walla.  Tanzer, the Editor-in-Chief at Vinous, has been one of the most respected wine critics in the world since the launch of his wine publication, the International Wine Cellar, in 1985.  Dame was the first American to pass all three parts of the Master Sommelier Examination in one year, and also the first American to have served as President of the Court of Master Sommeliers Worldwide.

Following the kick-off event on Friday, Sean Sullivan, contributing editor to Wine Enthusiast and founder of Washington Wine Report, will moderate an afternoon panel made up of winemakers from the Walla Walla Valley, the Bordeaux region of France, Napa Valley, California and Tuscany, Italy. Participants will have a rare opportunity to compare and contrast the growing conditions and wine styles from each region, and taste Merlot from all six producers:

·         Marty Clubb, L’Ecole N° 41 | Walla Walla Valley

·         Casey McClellan, Seven Hills Winery | Walla Walla Valley

·         David “Merf” Merfeld, Northstar | Walla Walla Valley

·         Renée Ary, Duckhorn Vineyards | Napa Valley, California

·         Vincent Lignac, Château Guadet | Bordeaux, France

·         Virginie Saverys, Avignonesi | Tuscany, Italy

On Friday evening, participants will be invited to take part in a special tasting of Merlot and Bordeaux-style white wines from more than 40 Walla Walla Valley wineries during a dinner featuring a line-up of acclaimed chefs.


Thursday, June 18, 2015

Vintage Pour | Dunham Cellars | 4:30-6:30 p.m.


Friday, June 19, 2015

The World of Merlot: Kick-off Event | Gesa Power House Theater | 8:30-10:00 a.m.

Winemaker Panel Presentations and Tastings | Marcus Whitman Hotel | 3:30-5:30 p.m.

Merlot Wine Tasting & Dinner | Reid Center at Whitman College | 6:00-8:30 p.m.


Saturday, June 20, 2015

Winemaker Dinners around the Walla Walla Valley | 6:00-9:00 p.m.


Tickets on sale now at www.wallawallawine.com/celebrate.