Tag Archives: washington wine blog

29 Aug

So much great news! New winery location, huge write up by SIP Northwest and harvest is here!

Harvest is upon us!

Wow! This last week has just been amazing! I really don’t even know what to start with so I guess I’ll go in chronological order. Eternal and Drink Washington State were just named 1 of 5 up and coming wineries in Washington State. This is an amazing honor and solidifies all the hard work, traveling, tastings and shows I do. It’s always a great feeling when people take notice of what you are doing and the message that you are sending. The article is viewable here by SIP Northwest. I see my message as “Hello wine world! We are here and we are not going anywhere but up!”

On that note, we have a new winery! We will be moving production for both labels into the incubators at the Walla Walla airport. This is an awesome opportunity for us as we have moved our production each of the first 4 years in business. It will be too late to do harvest there this year, but we are anticipating moving in by December 1st. The incubators are amazing since I will now for the first time be able to have our barrel storage, case storage, empty glass and equipment all under one roof. Plus we acquire another tasting room! That being said, we are not moving out from our downtown location. We will at first only use the airport tasting room for special events as it’s larger than our downtown space.

All 3 of our single vineyard Syrah received 90 points from Wine Enthusiast. To celebrate, we are offering free shipping on all orders of our Syrah (2 bottle min). We are also offering a special onetime only pricing on a case sampler pack; only $625. We also are offering a ½ case package and an exclusive engraved wine box set with all 3 for $250! We are running very low on our Syrah and they will not last long. You can order wines here.

We will continue to have live music at least once a week for the summer. Ivan Huera and Robert Gomez, AKA Zemog Otrebor are now on regular rotation in the tasting room as their unique styles make them local favorites. Mari Gisele and Kori Ailene will be first time performers in September. Join us for both of these amazing female artists. Free live music is from 5:30-7:30pm. Just a reminder that we always offer $5 glass pours of our Drink Washington State white wines, Eternal Beauty Rose and Sangrias!

With harvest on the verge of beginning, we will be doing less out of town events. We will pick back up with the weekly out of town pouring’s in January of 2018.

UPCOMING EVENTS 2017:

8/31/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Acoustic and ukulele live music at our tasting room by Ivan Huerta.

9/2/17, 5:30-7:30 pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Zemog Otrebor AKA Robert Gomez.

9/7/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Mari Gisele plays live in our downtown tasting room.

9/9/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Kori Ailene will be joining us from Spokane as she brings her unique vocals and acoustic guitar set at downtown tasting room.

9/12/17, 5pm. 5-course dinner with winemaker Brad Binko at the Point Casino  7989 NE Salish Ln, Kingston, WA 98346

9/14/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Acoustic and ukulele live music at our tasting room by Ivan Huerta.

9/16/17, 5:30-7:30 pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Zemog Otrebor AKA Robert Gomez.

9/19/17 Adam West Day! We will have special memorabilia available in our tasting room honoring the first and the best Batman, Adam West

9/28/17, 5:00-8:00pm. Water 2 Wine Tasting Cruise with winemaker Brad Binko. Docks in Kennewick, WA.

11/6/17 4:30-7:00 pm. Rising Stars pouring in Seattle, WA.

11/11/17, 7:00-10:00 pm. 39th Annual TriCities Wine Festival. Three Rivers Convention Center Kennewick.

 

As always thanks for reading.

 

-Drink Wine Be Happy

Brad Binko

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Washington Wine Blog interviews Owner and Winemaker Brad Binko

Interview with Brad Binko, Owner and Head Winemaker of Drink Washington State and Eternal Wines

Brad Binko has been very busy this past year. Brad manages two labels, Drink Washington State and Eternal Wines, and chooses colorful, hip labels for his wines that are are all pretty serious values. Binko is a former certified sommelier that chose to live in Walla Walla because of the community college’s strong reputation in producing great winemakers. As a recent graduate of Walla Walla Community College’s enology and viticulture program, Brad has done a ton of work in the past year, including has opened his new tasting room in the past year (located in downtown Walla Walla) and has made some pretty impressive new bottlings. I recently had the chance to sit down with him and chat wine. Brad is an awesome guy to chat wine with and I think you will really enjoy hearing his story. Here is my interview with Brad Binko, owner and head winemaker of Drink Washington State and Eternal Wines.

WWB: How did you first decide to start Drink Washington State and Eternal Wines?

BB: When I sold my marketing and promotions company in Las Vegas I wasn’t sure what my next move would be so I moved back to Charleston SC.  While there I was able to get back into F&B and work on advancing my wine knowledge even further.  For the next 2 years I worked as a sommelier for a couple places while I continued my Masters of Sommelier education.  After passing the level 2 (certified) exam I was beginning to feel the need to do more. I had almost attended Brock University for winemaking out of high school. My step-mother was really pushing me in that direction, but of course at 18 we know everything!  I later than almost went to UC Davis when I first moved to Las Vegas, however I started my company shortly after and couldn’t leave. I spent a lot of time researching possible landing spots and after a short trip to Walla Walla I knew where I wanted to call my next home.  So finally the 3rd time was the charm as I enrolled at the WWCC Enology and Viticulture program.  I knew that I wanted to start a winery and had the means to start one.  One of the hardest parts was actually coming up with the names!

WWB: How does your experience as a sommelier and your wine education make you a better winemaker?

BB: It helps greatly, being able to recall different varietals and how they show in different areas with different winemaking techniques is huge. Its like cooking, if you don’t know what garlic salt will do to the flavor of your dish you are less likely to use it. However if you have tasted it before you can make an educated assumption of how it will affect your current dish. It also helps me describe the flavors and break down my wines with guests in the tasting room. My goal is to not only make great wines but to educate the consumer on why it tastes like this, what the history of the grape is and why I choose to make it that way.

WWB: Your 2014 Drink Washington State ‘ Enjoy Walla Walla’ Carmenere (WWB, 90) was an awesome effort that is a terrific value. Can you talk about this great varietal and what kind of aromatic and flavor profiles you notice from Washington Carmenere?

BB: Carmenere is an amazing grape. I am starting to see (in Washington) an increase in wineries labeling their wines as Carmenere rather than blending it away in a Bordeaux blend. It is also also an opportunity for a great teaching moment, most people that come into my tasting room don’t even know what it is. This allows me or my tasting room staff to explain that it is the lost Bordeaux varietal and that now its spiritual home is in Chile. Carmenere is known for its great aromatic compounds that show white and black pepper and jalapeño notes which mines has as well.  My Drink Washington State line is designed to showcase the best of our AVA’s while not making you take out a second mortgage. I’ve actually had several winemakers and winery owners come to me and ask me to raise the prices because they think Im selling them at such a good price.

WWB: Another outstanding value wine, your 2014 Drink Washington State ‘Groovin on Wahluke Slope’ Cabernet Sauvignon (WWB, 89) showed wonderful poise and richness. Can you talk about this great wine and what you are anticipating for your next releases with the 2015 vintage?

BB: This lot is my largest lot I have bottled under either label, 10 barrels or 250 cases. It is funny to me because I’ll go tasting and hear other places say this is our reserve lot we only produced 400 cases of it….To me that’s not a reserve wine that’s a huge lot!  This allows me to spend equal time with all my lots so tech. they are all reserve lots in this case.  My goal for DWS is to make wines that can age however they need to be ready to drink upon release.  That is why this isn’t a huge tannin driven wine, instead you get nice fruit on the nose and palate, dusty tannins on the long finish.  The great part about my DWS line is that there are no rules!  Being able to source from all over Washington and blend whatever I want is of great appeal to me.  I will release the next vintage when I sell out however the blends may be different and or vineyards.  DWS allows me to be completely free, unlike with Eternal Wines where my focus is single vineyard single varietal, super small lots.

WWB: When you are not drinking Washington wines, what are some of your favorite wines of the world and favorite producers.

BB: Im a sucker for Napa Valley Cab!  I love the rich and bold flavors of Heitz, Nickel and Nickel, Robert Sinskey, ect.  My first love was Pinot Noir though and still love going down to the Willamette for a couple days and tasting through great wines from Ken Wright, White Rose and Adelsheim to name a few. Now that I am actually thinking about it though there really aren’t too many wine and regions I do not like tasting.  One of the best parts about studying for my Certified Sommelier exam was diving into a foreign region.  I would eat foods that are common in that area, and taste them with local wines.  I would research history of the area, normal temperatures if and when wars happened and how they sell themselves now.  It is really amazing when you can travel to another region without even leaving your home!

Click here to see their webpage.

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18 May

Drink Washington State scores 90 and 89 points!

Click here to see Washington Wine Blog webpage

2014 Drink Washington State Cabernet- The 2014 Drink Washington State Cabernet Sauvignon is a fantastic blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, 3% Carmenere from the Wahluke Slope. This wine begins with aromatics of black tea, black pepper, black cherry and anise accents. There are ripe flavors of red currant, red cherry, black raspberry with hints of coffee grounds. This has a nice combination of balance and fruit from this warm vintage. -Drink 2017-2023- 89

2014 Drink Washington State ‘Walla Walla’ Carmenere-The Carmenere bottling by Drink Washington State and head winemaker Brad Binko shines from this excellent 2014 vintage. This is composed of 97% Carmenere, 3% Cabernet Franc and begins with aromatics of smoked meats, green bell pepper, black cherry and dried sage. There are flavors reminiscent of black cherry, crushed mint, sage, coffee grounds and black tea. The herbaceousness of this Carmenere continues to show through the finish. Drink 2017-2023- 90

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18 May

Drink Washington State Newsletter 5.18.17

Hello my friends,

I can’t believe how fast time is flying! Vines are already growing to 3-5 inches tall! I have continued to be on the road most weekends. Click here to view our current placements. Spring Release was a huge success and I want to thank all of you for sending people our way, talking about us and coming in to taste the newest releases. We are currently pouring 8 wines on the Eternal Wine side, 5 on the Drink Washington State side and rose sangrias! It’s pretty awesome to come in and see the current line up as it is a mixture of all 3 vintages (2014-2016).

 

We have a lot of great events coming up at the tasting room. Ivan Huera will be playing on Friday 5/19 from 5:30-7:30pm. The following week on Saturday, Robert Gomez will be playing 5:30-7:30pm. Just a reminder that we always offer $5 glass pours of our Drink Washington State white wines, Eternal Beauty Rose and Sangrias!

Our Drink Washington State line just received great scores from the Washington Wine Blog. Enjoy Walla Walla Carmenere scored 90 points while the Groovin on Wahluke Slope was awarded 89. I just finished an interview with them about both of my labels. Stay tuned for that.

Speaking of interviews, I have been doing a lot of them lately. I just finished an interview with Jon Wells of Walla Walla wine limos and one with Great Northwest talk radio. Click here to see these interviews and see other accolades.

 

I will be pouring at some really cool events this month. If you are in Spokane, Prosser, Walla Walla or Seattle stop by and say hello!

UPCOMING EVENTS 2017:

5/19/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Ivan Huerta.

Saturday, May 20, 1:00PM –  4:00PM. Rising Stars at the Walter Clore Center, Owner & Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring both labels Eternal Wines and Drink Washington State.

5/24/17 & 5/25/17. Owner and Winemaker will be pouring at Reds Wine Bar in Kent, WA.

5/26/17, 6-9pm. Owner and Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring Snoqualmie wine walk.

5/27/17, 5:30-7:30 pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Robert Gomez.

6/2/17, 6pm. Join us to say goodbye to our first employee, Trista Britton, at our tasting room.

6/9/17. Owner and Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring at CBRC tennis in Richland, WA

6/16/17. Walla Walla Wine Alliance presents Grand Syrah Tasting. Owner and winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring.

7/23/17. Vintage Spokane Pouring at the Davenport Hotel.

9/12/17, 5pm. 5 course dinner with winemaker Brad Binko at the Point Casino.

Our tasting room at 9 S 1st Ave in downtown Walla Walla is open 7 days a week! Sundays- Wednesdays, 12-7pm, and Thursdays-Saturdays, 12-8pm.

 

As always thanks for reading.

 

-Drink Wine Be Happy

Brad Binko

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18 May

Drink Washington State Newsletter 5.18.17

Hello my friends,

I can’t believe how fast time is flying! Vines are already growing to 3-5 inches tall! I have continued to be on the road most weekends. Click here to view our current placements. Spring Release was a huge success and I want to thank all of you for sending people our way, talking about us and coming in to taste the newest releases. We are currently pouring 8 wines on the Eternal Wine side, 5 on the Drink Washington State side and rose sangrias! It’s pretty awesome to come in and see the current line up as it is a mixture of all 3 vintages (2014-2016).

 

We have a lot of great events coming up at the tasting room. Ivan Huera will be playing on Friday 5/19 from 5:30-7:30pm. The following week on Saturday, Robert Gomez will be playing 5:30-7:30pm. Just a reminder that we always offer $5 glass pours of our Drink Washington State white wines, Eternal Beauty Rose and Sangrias!

Our Drink Washington State line just received great scores from the Washington Wine Blog. Enjoy Walla Walla Carmenere scored 90 points while the Groovin on Wahluke Slope was awarded 89. I just finished an interview with them about both of my labels. Stay tuned for that.

Speaking of interviews, I have been doing a lot of them lately. I just finished an interview with Jon Wells of Walla Walla wine limos and one with Great Northwest talk radio. Click here to see these interviews and see other accolades.

 

I will be pouring at some really cool events this month. If you are in Spokane, Prosser, Walla Walla or Seattle stop by and say hello!

UPCOMING EVENTS 2017:

5/19/17, 5:30-7:30pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Ivan Huerta.

Saturday, May 20, 1:00PM –  4:00PM. Rising Stars at the Walter Clore Center, Owner & Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring both labels Eternal Wines and Drink Washington State.

5/24/17 & 5/25/17. Owner and Winemaker will be pouring at Reds Wine Bar in Kent, WA.

5/26/17, 6-9pm. Owner and Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring Snoqualmie wine walk.

5/27/17, 5:30-7:30 pm. Live Music at our tasting room by Robert Gomez.

6/2/17, 6pm. Join us to say goodbye to our first employee, Trista Britton, at our tasting room.

6/9/17. Owner and Winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring at CBRC tennis in Richland, WA

6/16/17. Walla Walla Wine Alliance presents Grand Syrah Tasting. Owner and winemaker Brad Binko will be pouring.

7/23/17. Vintage Spokane Pouring at the Davenport Hotel.

9/12/17, 5pm. 5 course dinner with winemaker Brad Binko at the Point Casino.

Our tasting room at 9 S 1st Ave in downtown Walla Walla is open 7 days a week! Sundays- Wednesdays, 12-7pm, and Thursdays-Saturdays, 12-8pm.

 

As always thanks for reading.

 

-Drink Wine Be Happy

Brad Binko

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