Walla Walla, WA

Weekend wine tasting: Eternal Wine, Walla Walla

Mary Jo Manzanares

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Eternal Wine in Walla Walla was founded in 2014 by owner/winemaker Brad Binko. He grew up in Buffalo, New York, attending college there before heading west. Binko is a graduate of Walla Walla Community College’s Enology and Viticulture program and is a certified sommelier.

Eternal Wine focuses on single-vineyard Rhone varietals, solely using hand-harvested fruit from premium vineyards. They use native fermentation, extended maceration, and non-intrusive wine-making techniques.

This tasting room is a great stop for Syrah lovers and taps into Binko’s love of single-vineyard Syrahs. Syrah grapes are a dark-skinned grape, not to be confused with Petit Syrah, a hybrid of Syrah. Eternal Wine also offers single-vineyard Rhone varietals, delicious choices, and often hard to find, like Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier, and Grenache Blanc.

So let’s get down to some tasting!

First up, the 2016 Eternal Zen Syrah.

With an alluring nose of fresh Bellflower (Campanula), lavender, and roasted pine nuts, this is a seductive wine with sturdy tannins. This was Eternal Wine’s first release from the Les Collines vineyard. Les Collines is French for “the foothills”- a fitting name since the vineyard is at the base of the Blue Mountains.

Personal tasting notes: Lovely from the first sip, getting even better as the flavor opened up. The flavors were soft and warm, just like wrapping up in your favorite fuzzy blanket. There was only one barrel of this made, so you may want to scoop it up for a special occasion. $59.

Next up, the 2018 Eternal Bliss (fortified Syrah).

Smells like a molasses brownie covered in raspberry sauce, and tastes like a cherry coke with a dash of vanilla and salted caramel. This is the American version of port-style wine. It can legally be called Port only if it’s made in Portugal, so it’s called fortified wine here in the U.S. 100% Syrah with grapes coming from the Dwelley Vineyard in Walla Walla.

Personal tasting notes: Sweet and sharp, as was expected, this is perfect for sipping after a lovely dinner. While it is sweet, it isn’t cloying. If you’re a cigar smoker, it would also make a nice pairing. You’re not going to drink this is one night, this is a keeper that you’ll enjoy for many nights to come.

Eternal Wine, and its sister label, Drink Washington State, is located at 602 Piper Avenue in Walla Walla. It is part of the airport incubators, a group of five newer wineries. The winery and the tasting room are at the same location and are open subject to mandated limitations. Drop-in visitors are permitted, if space allows, but it is better to call (509-240-6258) for a guaranteed tasting reservation.

As restrictions continue to be lifted, Eternal Wine has a music series scheduled to start run May-August. Stop by for different bands and food trucks each week.

Wine and event information can be found on the Eternal Wine website. Or enjoy watching a tasting here.

Remember to have a designated driver or take a cab or ride service when doing wine tasting.

Image by Juan José Berhó from Pixabay

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