The Bottle Is Passed

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TWCW%20Cover.JPG Steve%20Roberts.JPG WineTrails%20cover.jpg

Last April, there was a post in these columns about a book called Touring the Wine Country of Washington, written by yours truly some 25 years ago. Everything you wanted to know about all 37 of the state's wineries, back in 1983. Now, with over 500 bonded premises in the state, with formal designations and informal marketing associations aplenty, with Paul Gregutt's informed and scholarly Washington Wines & Wineries as the indispensable reference, it's clearly time for a new touring book.

Enter Steve Roberts, owner of an insurance agency on Mercer Island specializing in employee benefit programs. He's gone out and collected information on 228 wineries and assembled a hefty book (almost 600 pages) organized by region into 32 "wine trails." In fact, that's the title: WineTrails of Washington. (Shades of the very first such book, Winery Trails of the Pacific Northwest, published by the late Tom Stockley in 1977.) What makes the Roberts book unique is its companion website,, with a search functions, a page of description and a link for each winery. The format Roberts has chosen doesn't allow for much variation of emphasis; it's not always easy to tell if a winery is huge, famous, unknown or boutique-y, and there's not much help to find nearby restaurants or lodging. But he does use a star to indicate which wineries are best for viewing dramatic scenery or picknicking. Best of all, the website has links to the Google maps--nothing like zooming in on a satellite view of eastern Washington's crop circles! Don't know how he did it, but the book's only $19.95.

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This page contains a single entry by Cornichon published on February 6, 2008 10:41 AM.

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