Ste Chapelle & Gruet Winery crack “101 Best Wineries in America” List

Eric Degerman, writer for Great Northwest Wine, recently took a look at The Daily Meal’s list of the “101 Best Wineries in America.” According to the numbers, out of the “approximately 8,500 wineries in America (including 750+ in Washington alone),” 9 of the top 101 wineries in the country come from Washington. Two other wineries are from Seattle-based Precept Wine. Both Ste. Chapelle and Gruet Winery made the cut.

Degerman shared that “It would seem the panel also sought to highlight and encourage work done by a particular winery in a state with an emerging wine industry. Those were among the factors applied to a pair of wineries owned by Seattle-based Precept Wine, the largest privately owned wine company in the Pacific Northwest.

Gruet Winery, the sparkling wine house in New Mexico purchased last year by Precept, showed up at No. 95. Idaho’s largest and oldest winery, Ste. Chapelle, cracked the Daily Meal’s top 100 wineries at No. 98. A particularly memorable wine factored into the votes for Ste. Chapelle, Daily Meal Editor Coleman Andrews said.

“Regarding Ste. Chapelle, again this was simply a reflection of what people voted for (probably at least in part because it’s the best-known producer in the state and was an important pioneer) — though I should add that when we tasted an assortment of Idaho wines, including examples from Sawtooth, Coiled and Koenig Vineyards as well as Ste. Chapelle, the best wine of the lot was clearly the Ste. Chapelle Priest Lake Block 16 2011 Chardonnay, which encouraged me to cast my own vote for the winery,”  Andrews wrote.

Judges at the 2014 Idaho Wine Competition might agree with Andrews as Maurine Johnson’s debut under Ste. Chapelle’s young Panoramic Idaho series received a gold medal and was the top Chardonnay of the fifth annual event.”

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