Avennia was founded in 2012 by Partner/Winemaker Chris Peterson and Managing Partner Marty Taucher. Chris was the first graduate of Walla Walla Community College’s Enology & Viticulture program, and spent the better part of the last decade making wine at Delille Cellars. Chris and Marty’s appreciation for Old World winemaking is reflected in the name: Avennia is inspired by the Roman name for the city of Avignon.
This past Saturday my wife and I attended the Summer Open House which featured the release of the 2012 L’Egerie Rosé. They were also tasting the 2011 Justine and 2011 Arnaut which will be released later this Summer. Other wines being poured included the 2010 Gravura and 2010 Sestina.
Below are brief notes on a few of the wines.
2012 L’Egerie Rosé – 60% Grenache from Alder Ridge Vineyard and 40% Mouvedre from Kiona Vineyard. Very pale salmon colored. Flavors of peach, blood orange and grapefruit on the palate. Just a well crafted Rosé. $20 at the winery. Only 30 cases were produced. I suspect this wine will sell out in due order. My rating: 89 points.
2011 Justine – A Southern Rhone Blend of 46% Grenache from Alder Ridge Vineyard, 30% Mouvedre from Kiona Vineyard and 24% Syrah from Angela’s Vineyard. Aged in neutral oak. Really grapey at this point. Pepper, kirsh and raspberries dominate. Smooth and silky. Tons of potential. $35 at the winery with a September release date. My rating: 91 points.
2011 Arnaut – 100% Boushey Vineyard Syrah. 15% new French oak. Black cherry, game, plum and saline on the palate. Super acidity and balance. A worthy successor to the exceptional ’10 version. $45 at the winery withh a September release date. My rating: 92 points.
Please keep in mind these are just initial impressions based on small pours in a crowded tasting room. I bought my allocation of Rosé and will certainly purchase the other two wines at the Fall release.
Avennia got some well deserved press after faring well in the “Washington verse the World” seminar at Taste of Washington. Delay in signing up for the mailing list at your own peril!
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