Go vertical!

New event in Valley this weekend to provide wine experience

What's your wine IQ? Don't know? Think it could be better? A weekend of wine education programs will get underway this Labor Day holiday.

Called Going Vertical!, the new event will offer basic programs to help wine enthusiasts raise their knowledge of wine.

Participants will learn how wine grapes impact the wine, the use of oak in wine production, how to make harvest decisions and much more.

Each program has been designed exclusively for small groups to allow time to ask questions and talk with the winemakers from the Yakima Valley in an intimate, casual and relaxed atmosphere.

Going Vertical! will give visitors a rare opportunity to walk the vineyards and learn how the wine grapes relate to the wine in the bottle. Yakima Valley wine grape growers will be preparing for harvest this weekend, allowing visitors to experience the vineyards and taste the grapes before they become wine.

Going Vertical! is a chance to experience the differences between the vintages of wines of the same varietal. Many wineries will feature vertical tastings in their tastings rooms this weekend. Seven different programs will be offered.

The Oak Factor in Winemaking program will be presented at Apex Cellars in Sunnyside Sunday, Sept. 3, from 1 to 3 p.m. Tickets cost $35, with a limited quantity available.

A tasting program will be held Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon at DuBrul Vineyard and Cote Bonneville Winery in Outlook at the end of Dekker Road overlooking the Yakima River. Tickets cost $75 and quantities are limited.

A brunch and blending class will take place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. at Sagelands Vineyard in Wapato with winemaker Frederique Spencer. Cost is $40.

A Wine & Grapes Basics program will be given twice, at Chandler Reach Vineyard in Benton City Saturday, Sept. 2, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and at Sheridan Vineyard on Sunday, Sept. 3, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The $50 ticket includes a box lunch.

Harvest Decisions will be the subject of a Saturday program from 10 a.m. to noon at Chinook Winery in Prosser. Tickets cost $25, limited number available.

A vineyard tour and luncheon will be held Saturday from noon to 2:30 p.m. at Elephant Mountain Vineyard on Konnowac Pass, which gives a view of Mt. Adams and the original wagon trail used by valley residents taking goods to Yakima for trading in the late 1800s. A $25 ticket includes lunch and tour, quantity limited.

A tour of the oldest vines in Washington state will take place at Kestrel Vintners and Kestrel View Estate Vineyard in Prosser from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday at a charge of $30 per person. A maximum of 12 people will be accepted.

To purchase tickets go to: www.wineyakimavalley.org.


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