The buzz is still in the air from Jay Miller's recent visit to Washington, and for good reason. Washington has once again hit 100 point status with the 2007 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon. Now Quilceda has hit 100 before, but a large number of Washington wineries were awarded some of their highest scores ever on this visit. I have heard time and again that the 2007 vintage in Washington was the reason for the quality of these wines. Yes, 2007 was a mighty fine vintage with many structured wines capable of some serious cellar time. The thing is, I have tasted many wines from the 2008 vintage that just plain shined and in some cases surpassed the quality of the 2007's.
The quality of Washington wine is going up. More students, like myself, are graduating from enology and viticulture programs every year than ever before. Winemakers are taking advantage of these programs as well to increase their knowledge of making quality wine. These scores are not simply the product of one good vintage. These scores are the reflection of our very young wine region beginning to get better.