Hard Row to Hoe Vineyards 2013 Shameless Hussy Viognier, Lake Chelan, $18
Lake Chelan vintner Judy Phelps makes her Hard Roe to Hoe wines near the north shore town of Manson, and she crafts two versions of Viognier. This comes from two south shore vineyards — Wadkins as well as Defiance, the latter of which is an estate site for acclaimed Nefarious Cellars. She treats the Defiance lot (60%) with stainless steel, while the other spent time in neutral oak and stirred weekly on the lees. (Her non-“Hussy” Viognier features aging in 30% new French oak.) That explains the fun nose of tropical, toasty and buttery notes with hints of Orange Creamsicle, lime and Spanish almonds. There’s delicious richness on the palate, which continues the Creamsicle theme along with Asian pear and lemon custard. This would be an ideal alternative for Chardonnay lovers, and Phelps suggests serving this with butternut squash soup, grilled peaches, s’mores or coconut-based curries.
Production: 237 cases