GSM among Washington’s most delicious blends

By on April 8, 2018

Cloudlift Cellars 2013 Zephyr GSM, Columbia Valley, $34

cloudlift-cellars-zephyr-gsm-2013-labelTom Stangeland lives on Seattle’s Capitol Hill, makes his wine near Georgetown and brings his fruit from east of the Cascades. His blend of Rhône varieties starts with Syrah (42%) from Arianses Vineyard on the Wahluke Slope that’s co-fermented with Viognier, and he swirls in Grenache (20%) off Elephant Mountain as well as Mourvèdre from sister site Sugarloaf at bit lower in the Rattlesnake Hills. The nose of dried oregano, Rainier cherry, tar and vanilla gives way to flavors of black cherry, juicy blueberry and Marionberry. Touches of cola, black olive and toast are not lost within the balanced mouth feel. Stangeland enjoys pairing this with Mediterranean-themed dishes such as Cannellini Beans with Sausage, Salade Niçoise and bouillabaisse.

Rating: Excellent

Production: 128 cases

Alcohol: 13.8%

Winery website

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About Andy Perdue

Andy Perdue is the editor and publisher of Great Northwest Wine. He is a third-generation journalist who has worked at newspapers since the mid-1980s and has been writing about wine since 1998. He co-founded Wine Press Northwest magazine with Eric Degerman and served as its editor-in-chief for 15 years. He is a frequent judge at international wine competitions. He is the author of "The Northwest Wine Guide: A Buyer's Handbook" (Sasquatch, 2003) and has contributed to four other books. He writes about wine for The Seattle Times. You can find him on Twitter and .


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