Eleven Winery

Here in the Rocky Mountain region, we are all a buzz with the USA Pro Challenge.  We were thrilled to host for the event for the second year in a row and welcomed over 100 cyclists to climb 683 grueling miles and visit 12 of some of our most beautiful Colorado cities and towns. Of course, I use “we” loosely as I honestly don’t follow the sport myself.  But I have made it a habit to watch the five minute special on the days events following the ten o’clock news.  Does that count for anything?  And congratulations to Christian Vande Velde for being the overall winner!  USA…USA…USA!!!

To pay a little tribute, I thought now was as a good as time as any to share with you our experience with Eleven Winery.

Why you ask?  Eleven Winery was started by Matt Albee, a former cyclist himself, and his wife Sarah.  Named after a bicycle racing term, The Eleven, Matt was determined to give it his all and use all eleven teeth of his smallest cog as he switched gears from cycling to wine-making.

Now while cycling isn’t my sport of choice, wine is my drink of choice. Preferably a nice blended white wine, Conundrum and Evolution being some favorites, or a Pinot Grigio.

Washington State is becoming increasingly known for its excellent wineries and their produced wines.  In fact, the small community of Bainbridge Island has eight local wineries alone.  Unfortunately, there are only select weekends that visitors are welcomed to tour the wineries themselves, but they do have tasting rooms that offer samples to passerbys.

We found ourselves in front of the Eleven Winery while walking through Poulsbo.  I particularly enjoyed the modified sign of Kids Welcome “with parents“.  [Apparently some of the local teenagers thought this was an invitation for free booze.  Sorry kids.  Go drink your parents liquor like the rest of us did.]  If this isn’t enough of a welcome for free wine,  I don’t know what is.  

Turns out, kids really are welcome.  There is a whole corner devoted to the young’ins with train tracks and other toys.  This buys parents at least a few minutes to learn about the wines and take a few sips before the kids realize there is other merchandize in the store that is more interesting that Thomas the Tank Engine.

Their white wine selections including everything from the Dolce Grigio, the sweet dessert port, to a roussanne for those who prefer a full body flavor.  Although I did sample their Pinot Grigio and enjoyed it, I fell in love with the La Donella.  This is their current blended vintage, which changes every year to select only the best of the best of grapes.  Three bottles were shipped to my house that day.  I won’t tell you how many are left…

The Banker prefers a red wine and generally sticks with a Shiraz when ordering at a restaurant.  This makes sharing a bottle of wine over dinner impossible.    You see, my palate cannot stand the dry, bitterness of red.  And yes, I have tried many to confirm this.  He too opted for the blend.  And as we presented this to my father as his birthday gift, I realized that Balance is an Oregon wine rather than a Washington wine.  Ooops.  Oh well, I’m told it’s delicious.

It is such a treat to step out of your tasting comfort zone and try something different.  Who knows, maybe you’ll discover a whole new love of your life.  In wines of course.  I don’t recommend turning to wine for love or friendship.

Thank you Eleven Winery for a nice visit.

sam

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