By Traci Garrett
I’ve finally recuperated from Taste Washington. (3 full days later)! I always look forward to this fabulous wine and food event.
What a terrific way to reconnect with all the people in the industry you know and meet some new faces all under the same roof. The air is filled with electricity as people rally to hit as many wine stands as possible in the short time they have. Let’s face it folks after the first 10 stands it all starts to taste the same to me. The food on the other hand plays second fiddle to the wine.
There are many food aficionados who look for that special something to wake up their palate but I believe most of the people eat the food with no appreciation to what they are really putting in their mouth. They just want to shove something down to soak up the wine action in their gut and this, of course is all wrong in my book. I look for that interesting morsel that will pair nicely with that fabulous wine I want to try. Something out of the ordinary — something that will scream out “wash me down with that fantastic Cab over there!”
As a matter of fact, there were quite a few eateries that impressed me this year just for this very reason.
The first was Salty’s WOW Tri-Colored Vichyssoise topped with a little crab salad – pure heaven and beautiful to boot!
Honorable mention goes to Perche’ No because besides taking a huge risk of serving, God forbid, beef tongue they also served asparagus, which for some folks screws up their wine – tasting buds and changes the whole wine tasting experience for the worse.
On a side note: I kinda like how asparagus changes my taste buds! I tried several big reds with the tongue and the roasted red bell peppers! What a great way to enhance your wine experience.
But my favorite was without a doubt Pike Place Chowder. Those guys dished up the most amazing Chorizo, Crab, Clam Chowder in a little bread bowl.
We really enjoyed the Kestrel Chardonnay across the aisle with it too! I was ready to take both those Chowder guys home for some chowder making lessons!
I also have to mention: Maryhill Winery’s Sangiovese paired with some of Cindy’s homemade BBQ sauce. The only problem with that taste of pure heaven was the cracker they used for the BBQ sauce, both Duane and I thought a spoon, or maybe a shovel, of this stuff with the Sangiovese would work!