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Originally published December 19, 2007 at 12:00 AM | Page modified December 19, 2007 at 2:17 PM

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Wine Adviser

The year's best Washington wines

Once again, in the retrospective spirit of the season, I offer a highly personal list of the year's Top 100 Washington wines. There are now more...

Special to the Seattle Times

Once again, in the retrospective spirit of the season, I offer a highly personal list of the year's Top 100 Washington wines.

There are now more than 530 bonded wineries in the state. If they average just 10 wines annually (some less, some more) that's more than 5,000 wines. Do I taste them all? In my dreams! But I do taste a significant percentage, and that, along with frequent visits to wineries and vineyards, numerous conversations and tastings with the winemakers themselves, and a depth of reference tastings reaching back a quarter-century, all enter into this ranking.

Many of the elite Washington wineries sell most of their wines to mailing-list customers, select restaurants and wine shops. It is important to recognize them — even if they are expensive and rare — because these are building a quality reputation for Washington state, which I believe to be the most important emerging wine region in the New World.

Included also are some widely available, inexpensive wines — those which offer exceptional flavor and value. These everyday bottles evangelize for the affordability of Washington wines.

I try to list just one wine per winery, although many of these producers make a full lineup of outstanding wines. My aim is to be inclusive. Even so, barely 20 percent of the wineries in the state make the list. The competition, needless to say, gets tougher every year.

This ranking is not done strictly by the numbers, although these are all wines that score very well on the 100-point scale. I believe that consistency year-to-year, overall style and quality and relative value (to comparable wines) are equally important guidelines.

Gregutt's Top 100 state wines for 2007

1. Wine of the Year: Leonetti Cellar 2004 Reserve ($110)

2. Chateau Ste. Michelle 2006 "Ethos" Late Harvest White Riesling ($40)

3. Quilceda Creek 2004 Galitzine Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($95)

4. K Vintners 2005 "The Beautiful" Syrah ($50)

5. Sineann 2005 Block One Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($65)

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6. Cayuse 2005 Widowmaker Cabernet Sauvignon ($65)

7. JLC 2004 Spofford Station Estate Syrah ($32)

8. DeLille Cellars 2006 Chaleur Estate Blanc ($34)

9. 94 Poet's Leap 2006 Riesling ($20)

10. Betz Family 2005 La Serenne Syrah ($50)

11. Dunham 2004 Lewis Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($75)

12. Woodward Canyon 2004 "Old Vines" Cabernet Sauvignon ($75)

13. McCrea Cellars 2004 "Cuvée Orleans" Syrah ($60)

14. Château Rollat 2005 "Edouard" Cabernet Sauvignon ($62)

15. Andrew Will 2005 Sorella Red Wine ($65)

16. Matthews Estate 2003 Conner Lee Cabernet Franc Reserve ($110)

17. Robert Karl 2005 Syrah ($29)

18. Syncline 2005 Cuvée Elena Red Wine ($35)

19. Fielding Hills 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon ($38)

20. Walla Walla Vintners 2005 Sagemoor Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($40)

21. Bunnell Family Cellar 2005 Boushey-McPherson Vineyard Syrah ($38)

22. Novelty Hill 2004 Stillwater Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($28)

23. Soos Creek 2005 Artist Series #5 Red Wine ($35)

24. Barnard Griffin 2004 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($30)

25. Basel Cellars 2005 Syrah ($36)

26. Abeja 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon ($38)

27. Buty 2006 67 percent Semillon/33 percent Sauvignon Blanc ($25)

28. Gorman Winery 2005 "The Bully" Cabernet Sauvignon ($40)

29. Mark Ryan 2006 Conner Lee Vineyard Viognier ($28)

30. Stevens 2004 "XY" Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($42)

31. Isenhower 2004 Bachelor's Button Cabernet Sauvignon ($32)

32. Nicholas Cole Cellars 2004 Camille ($48)

33. Pepper Bridge 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon ($50)

34. SYZYGY 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon ($32)

35. Northstar 2004 Merlot ($50)

36. Seven Hills Winery 2004 Syrah ($26)

37. Nota Bene 2004 Syrah ($28)

38. Alexandria Nicole 2004 Destiny Ridge Vineyard Red Table Wine ($45)

39. Col Solare 2004 Red Table Wine ($75)

40. Smasne Cellars 2006 Smasne Vineyard Estate Dry Riesling ($22)

41. Beresan 2005 Merlot ($29)

42. Barrister 2005 Cabernet Franc ($25)

43. Januik 2004 Lewis Vineyard Syrah ($30)

44. O• S Winery 2005 Dineen Vineyard Syrah ($42)

45. Pedestal 2004 Merlot ($55)

46. Doyenne 2006 Roussanne ($32)

47. L'Ecole No 41 2006 Fries Vineyard Sémillon ($20)

48. Amavi Cellars 2006 Sémillon ($20)

49. Merry Cellars 2006 Stillwater Creek Vineyard Sémillon ($18)

50. Sparkman 2006 Lumière Chardonnay ($40)

51. Chateau Ste. Michelle 2005 Canoe Ridge Estate Chardonnay ($20)

52. Milbrandt Vineyards 2005 "Legacy" Syrah ($25)

53. Cadence 2005 Bel Canto Red Wine ($55)

54. Three Rivers 2004 Syrah ($24)

55. Forgeron 2003 Syrah ($30)

56. Otis Kenyon 2005 Seven Hills Vineyard Reserve Merlot ($40)

57. Va Piano 2005 Syrah ($38)

58. Walter Dacon 2005 C'est Syrah Magnifique ($38)

59. Canoe Ridge 2004 "Block 1" Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($45)

60. Brian Carter Cellars 2004 L'Etalon ($30)

61. J Bookwalter 2005 Merlot ($36)

62. Charles Smith Wines 2006 Kungfu Girl Riesling ($12)

63. Gamache Vintners 2004 GV Reserve "Gamache — Champoux Vineyard Select" Cabernet Sauvignon ($40)

64. Waters 2005 Columbia Valley Syrah ($25)

65. Saviah Cellars 2005 Une Vallée Red ($32)

66. Tertulia Cellars 2005 Syrah ($27)

67. Des Voigne Cellars 2005 "Montreux" Syrah ($27)

68. Seia 2005 Clifton Hill Vineyard Syrah ($30)

69. Cuillin Hills 2005 Syrah ($32)

70. Gordon Brothers 2006 Sauvignon Blanc ($13)

71. Animale 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon ($26)

72. Nelms Road 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon ($20)

73. Hedges 2004 Three Vineyards ($22)

74. Olsen Estates 2006 Chardonnay ($28)

75. Chatter Creek 2004 Clifton Hill Vineyard Syrah ($30)

76. Arbor Crest 2004 Wahluke Slope Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($30)

77. Tamarack Cellars 2005 Cabernet Franc ($25)

78. Hightower Cellars 2004 Merlot ($28)

79. Ash Hollow 2006 Gewürztraminer ($19)

80. Hestia 2004 Red Wine ($20)

81. Apex 2006 Dry Riesling ($20)

82. Vin du Lac 2006 "LEHM" Estate Dry Riesling ($20)

83. Coeur d'Alene Cellars 2006 Chardonnay ($18)

84. Trust 2006 Semillon Ice Wine ($40)

85. Cascadia Winery 2006 Riesling ($16)

86. Columbia Crest 2006 "Two Vines" Riesling ($8)

87. Snoqualmie 2006 "Naked" Riesling ($11)

88. Airfield Estates 2006 Pinot Gris ($16)

89. Lone Canary 2006 Sauvignon Blanc ($10)

90. Kestrel 2006 Estate Viognier ($20)

91. Bergevin Lane 2006 Viognier ($25)

92. Willow Crest 2005 Cabernet Franc ($16)

93. Wineglass Cellars 2005 Les Vignes De Marcoux Syrah ($35)

94. Thurston Wolfe 2005 Zephyr Ridge Petite Sirah ($20)

95. Woodinville Wine Cellars 2006 Sauvignon Blanc ($18)

96. Trio Vintners 2006 Lewis Vineyards Riesling ($12)

97. Waterbrook 2004 Merlot ($20)

98. Covey Run 2005 "Quail Series" Chenin Blanc ($8)

99. Dusted Valley 2005 Birch Creek Vineyard Chardonnay ($28)

100. San Juan Vineyards 2006 Madeleine Angevine ($14)

Paul Gregutt is the author of "Washington Wines and Wineries The Essential Guide."

His column appears weekly in the Wine section. He can be reached by e-mail at wine@seattletimes.com.

Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company

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About Wine Adviser
My column, Wednesdays in Northwest Life, is all about sharing the joy of exploring all the world of wine. I want to guide people to make inspired choices, and encourage them to try as many different styles of wine as they can. I will always seek out the best wines at the best prices.
wine@seattletimes.com

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