V put the groceries she picked up on the way home down on the counter and with that smile, she says “Oh yeah, I bought a magazine too…” I replied with a smile “I’ll just bet you did…Which one?”
“Seattle Magazine - I just had to, it is the Best of 2012 issue and it has an article about sparkling wine.” She followed that statement up with, “One of the highlighted sparkling wines in the article is Treveri near Yakima.”
“That means we are taking a trip, isn’t it?” I smiled…
Flash forward to today and the road trip is underway. V had to run a couple of errands early and since the facility doesn’t open until noon anyway, we decided to make a day of it, taking some photos of the Red Mountain AVA, grab a bite of lunch somewhere, then experience all that Treveri has to offer.
It was a glorious, cold, mid-morning, and most of the frost from the frigid temperature last night has burned off. It seems silly to be out there taking photos, everyone in the world does it, maybe we feel no one sees it quite like we do – we feel so connected when we are out there. For once, and I mean that literally, we don’t stop anywhere for a tasting. We’ve not ever done that. I force the neurons and synapses to do the work they were intended to do. Answer comes back. No, not ever have we done that.
However we have a plan and we are sticking to it. Where for lunch? That little deli in Benton City? Wine O’Clock in Prosser? V says “Wine O’Clock…”
So on to Prosser we go. Did I say it was a glorious morning? This morning was blue, almost forgot what color the sky was, a few clouds and the Sun! As we travelled west we got a great glimpses of Mt. Adams to the left and Mt. Rainier more to the center. Glorious indeed.
We arrived at the Prosser Vine Village but Wine O’Clock isn’t open. “So where now?” I ask. V replies, “You know I don’t know Prosser very well.” I propose, “Desert Wind has a restaurant, Mojave. Let’s see if they are open.”
We drive across town and are rewarded with the open sign at the door. We have tasted the wine there previously and even met the owners at a Taste Washington event 3 or 4 years ago, “Nice People” V&I say at the same time. Uncanny. That thought fades into we are hungry and eager to try a new place.
We are graciously greeted by Victoria and seated with a menu. Looking over the menu, I am impressed to say the least, as the choices reflect the Southwest motif of the Mojave. However, we end up ordering the Specials of the Day, a rack of smoked baby back ribs, with slaw and corn fritters, and a bowl of the jalapeno cheese sausage soup.
The wine we chose to have with lunch was the “09” Tempranillo and the “10” Duck Pond Pinot Gris. I already hear you asking, “Duck Pond?” Duck Pond winery is owned by the same family, as we learned at the Taste Washington event mentioned earlier.
The wine is brought to the table and we “clink” as we always do. Then a deep inhale of the contents of the glass to receive the aroma of the terrior from whence the wine came, a look at the color, now the swirl of the glass to put more air into the fluid and to release the fruit and the wine makers love. It is a routine V&I have performed numerous times – we never seem to get tired of our little ritual.
We love the wines. The Tempranillo is dark purple, juicy, fruit forward, and a smooth yet earthy finish. The Pinot Gris is very light, crisp, clean, just off sweet, and “Delicious!” as V put it.
All this happens as we watch chef Kirstin Johnson at work. The restaurant is set up so the guests see the staff and kitchen equipment used in creating our selection and we absolutely love that.
We started with the soup. Two spoons and one bowl, we wouldn’t have it any other way. The soup was a hearty one with generous portions of sausage, potatoes with skin on, mushrooms and a deep brown broth. The thing about the soup was that with all that and the small strips of a green onion floating, it wasn’t overpowering or overbearing on any of the components. Two words; balance and harmony. By the way, that jalapeno had a little adios for me as it made its way through the mouth and down the throat. FUN!
Next the ribs. Half for me, half for V. Split the slaw and fritters too. Ribs were dry spice rubbed, with just enough smoke, and I actually smelled all that, before I put them in my mouth. Wonderful! V was laughing at me cause I was making “MMMMM” sounds while I was eating. There was a cup of sauce on the side that was hand crafted and when coupled with the rub and smoke made that rack of ribs as good as I have ever experienced. Truly.
The slaw was lightly dressed and was comprised of apple, cabbage, carrot, and a little jalapeno too. Although it wasn’t planned that way, that component carried the theme started by the soup. The fritters were light as air and had whole kernels of corn infused in those little balls of goodness. The texture of those left us wanting more.
V&I settle for a Yakima Valley baked apple for desert. Is that really settling? The apple is stuffed with very small pieces of apple, walnuts, small diced green chile, and spices. The apple was then topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and hand crafted caramel sauce. Luckily for me when V was trying to cut the apple in half, the scoop of ice cream fell on my side of the plate, but because I love her I let her have half anyway. Maybe there was just a bit of self preservation in there somewhere.
As we were looking at the aftermath of the meal I realized there was a thread running through the meal with the apple from the slaw and desert coupled with the jalapeno in soup and slaw components and the green chile in the desert. Not intentional to be truthful, but it sure worked! What an outstanding meal, service, and facility! Well done chef Kristin…
We extend our gratitude to all then on to Treveri we go. We have a plan and we are sticking with it.