Skylite Cellars

I had so much fun shooting this for SkyLite Cellars. Ashley was so easy to work with and Ernie the dog loved the spotlight! This is a special place, with the architecture taking it’s cue from a wine barrel. They have a great outdoor seating area with a fire pit, and a very comfortable secret little room upstairs for some peace and quiet. And winemaker Greg Matiko has been winning lots of awards recently. Be sure to stop by on your way into (or out of) Walla Walla. You won’t be disappointed!

Cougar Crest Estate Winery

It was so nice to work with Cougar Crest again. I did an interview with owner/winemaker Debbie Hanson a few years ago for idrinkyourwine.com
Since then, they have continued to produce award-winning wine and have added to their collection of Jeffrey Hill original art. It was a joy to produce this Google Business View panoramic interactive virtual tour for them. Ever wondered what it’s like down in the Library? I was allowed to panorama down into it. Check it out! I even rather enjoyed having to come back in the afternoon to finish up the outdoor shots. Not to be missed on Old Hiway 12 at Frenchtown Rd.
Best experienced full screen – click on the chevrons to move around the room, left click and hold while panning, scroll to zoom

Terroirism

Last Saturday I was lucky enough to be invited to a very different sort of wine event. The fine folks at Walla Faces sponsored a lecture/tour/tasting focusing on the four terroirs to be found in the Walla Walla AVA. It began with a very informative and entertaining slideshow/lecture by Dr. Kevin Pogue, head of the geology dept at Whitman College, explaining the Missoula Floods and how it essentially created the Walla Walla Valley and the various terroirs.

Then we got on a bus and headed out to four different vineyards (Walla Faces, Leonetti, Cayuse, and Seven Hills), each representative of one of the four terroirs. We also made a number of stops along the highway to view cut banks that showed the various strata and deposits that determine the distinctive characteristics of each terroir. At each stop Kevin gave us a little more detailed info about that particular terroir. He was extremely good at explaining everything in terms a layman could understand, and had a number of entertaining visual demos to illuminate his points. I kind of felt like I was taking part in a Discovery Channel video. Who knew dirt could be so interesting!

Then it was back to the Walla Faces tasting room where we were invited to do side by side tastings of Waters Winery syrah barrel samples from two different terroirs (Leonetti loess, and Forgotten Hills silt loam/sandy loam/cobble). Since these were barrel samples, there hadn’t yet been any adjustments made by the winemaker. And indeed, there were marked differences in the tastes from the distinct terroirs. We also tasted other finished wines from the Walla Walla AVA provided by Waters, Dusted Valley and Walla Faces.

I had an absolutely fantastic time at this event. Thanks again to our gracious hosts at Walla Faces. I highly recommend this trip to anyone even remotely interested in terroir. It isn’t offered very often, so call the Walla Faces tasting room for the next date.