Clore Center schedules second annual Rising Stars for May 20

By on March 31, 2017
The second annual Rising Stars consumer tasting will be staged Saturday, May 20, 2017 at the Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center in Prosser, Wash.

Brendan Simpers, cellar assistant for Syncline Cellars, pours for consumers at last year’s Rising Stars tasting event at the Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center in Prosser, Wash. The second annual Rising Stars will be Saturday, May 20. (Photo by William Pollard Jr. @wild4wawine/Courtesy of the Clore Center)

PROSSER, Wash. – The Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center is springing ahead with its second annual Rising Stars by scheduling the consumer tasting on Saturday, May 20, in the heart of Washington wine country.

Last year’s successful debut was staged Aug. 26, and it would have been considerably more hectic for the participating winemakers had the 2016 vintage not slowed down from its record hot start.

“We moved it to the spring so that it wasn’t such a hardship for the winemakers,” said April Reddout, wine program director of the Clore Center.

Last year’s success is proof in this year’s registration.

“Of the 35 spots, 33 are spoken for already,” Reddout said. “We had 40 wineries last year, which included five in the tasting room, but this year we will be transforming the entire tasting room into a giant wine store.

“Our goal is for everyone to fill their six-bottle tote before they leave,” she added. “I’m really excited about it. We’re going to help these people sell a lot of wine.”

Boutique brands, accomplished winemakers

Flint Nelson of Wit Cellars

Flint Nelson pours a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon from Wit Cellars. Nelson has been a Washington winemaker for 26 years. (Photo by Andy Perdue/Great Northwest Wine)

If this year’s lineup is similar to the 2016 array, the tickets and the wines will be an easy sell.

Among the young brands pouring their wines last summer at Rising Stars were Avennia, Wine Press Northwest magazine’s 2014 Washington Winery to Watch; Co Dinn Cellars; Palencia Wine Co., Wine Press Northwest’s 2015 Washington Winery to Watch; Wit Cellars, Wine Press Northwest’s 2017 Winery to Watch; Aluvé Winery and Drink Washington Wine, best of class winners at the 2016 Walla Walla Valley Wine Competition; Cairdeas Winery, best of show winner at the 2016 Tri-Cities Wine Festival; and Truth Teller Winery, a best-of-class winner at this year’s Cascadia Wine Competition.

Participating wineries are determined on a first-come, first-serve basis among those with a history of seven or fewer commercial vintages.

The Clore Center partners with Washington Tasting Room magazine in Woodinville on the event billed as “a tasting experience of Washington’s newest wineries.” Magazine publisher John Vitale said in a news release, “This is a must-attend pouring event for newer bonded wineries and a chance for them to gain recognition among some of the most avid consumers and fans of Washington wine.”

Last year’s inaugural Rising Stars was staged on a sultry Friday evening. This spring, it falls on a Saturday afternoon. Patrons will be able to browse the wines and visit with the winemakers from 1-4 p.m. Each attendee receives a commemorative wine glass for tasting, a snack tray and a wine tote to take home their favorite bottles of the day.

Early-bird pricing before April 30 is $50 plus tax, which reflects a $20 increase from last year. Price raises to $55 plus tax, and tickets are available at








About Eric Degerman

Eric Degerman is the President and CEO of Great Northwest Wine. He is a journalist with more than 30 years of daily newspaper experience and has been writing about wine since 1998. He co-founded Wine Press Northwest magazine with Andy Perdue and served as its managing editor for a decade. He is a frequent wine judge at international wine competitions throughout North America and orchestrates 10 Northwest competitions each year.

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