2015 Washington Wine Awards Methodology and Tasting Panel
By Seattle magazine staff August 12, 2015
Nominations for this year’s Washington Wine Awards were solicited via survey from a panel of Washington wine and food professionals. The top vote-getters in the wineries, winemaker, vineyard and sommelier categories were selected as winners. The more than 100 wines receiving the most votes in the varietal categories qualified as finalists for a blind tasting, on March 2, 2015, conducted by a panel of 14 industry professionals, and were scored using a 20-point system, awarding points for their appeal in sight, smell and taste. The wine with the most points won. Sparkling wine winners were selected from an open submission using the same metholdology. Winners in each variety category went on to compete for Wine of the Year, and were selected via a show of hands.
Rosé winners were selected at a blind tasting on April 6, 2015, from an open submission of wines, using the same methodology as above, with a panel of five wine judges. For our 10th anniversary, we reached out to wineries whose wines had been declared Wine of the Year in our past tastings for a ten-year retrospective tasting, also on April 6 (see page 92).
Information in the tasting notes was taken from the tasters’ descriptions of the wines. Tasting panelists who are winemakers were excluded from voting in categories in which their wines were entered.
Seattle magazine’s Washington Wine Awards program is produced by Yashar Shayan.
Tasting Panelists (participated at our March 2, 2015, tasting)
Nominations for this year’s Washington Wine Awards were solicited via survey from a panel of Washington wine and food professionals. Tasting panelists who are winemakers were excluded from voting in categories in which their wines were finalists. Tasting panelists who were also on the nominating panel are in bold; winemakers on the panel were recused from tasting in any categories in which their wines were a nominee.
Bob Betz, MW, Betz Family Winery
Joel Butler, MW, co-owner World of Wines/WineKnow LLC
Regina Daigneault, wine studies coordinator, Northwest Wine Academy at South Seattle College
Jeffrey Dorgan, wine director, Space Needle
Tommy Garland, wine steward, QFC Broadway Market
Chris Horn, wine director, Purple Café & Wine Bar
Lane Hoss, vice president of marketing and beverage director, Anthony’s Restaurants
Jake Kosseff, partner, Miller’s Guild
Thomas M. Price, MS, Jackson Family Fine Wines
Lisa Rongren, sommelier, The Herbfarm
Rand Sealey, Review of Washington Wines
Mark Takagi, wine director, Metropolitan Market
Tommy Thompson, wine director, Tulalip Resort Casino
Paul Zitarelli, founder/owner, Full Pull Wines
Tasting panelists who are winemakers were excluded from voting in categories in which their wines were entered.
Survey Panelists (participated via survey only)