Basalt Cellars 2016 Viognier, Walla Walla Valley, $18

Third-generation pharmacist Rick Wasem has displayed a real flair for red varieties native to the Rhône Valley, so it’s not a stretch to see the Washington State University grad produce another stellar example of Viognier from Dwelley Vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley east of town near the foothills of the Blue Mountains. Lovely lemon and orange peel aromas include orange and vanilla cream. There’s roundness on the entry with flavors of Bosc pear and navel orange, backed by sweet tangerine on the midpalate and capped by enough lemony acidity and minerality for a complex finish. Enjoy with curries, vegetables roasted with Moroccan spices, butternut squash or pumpkin bisque.

Rating: Excellent

Production: 104 cases

Alcohol: 14.7%

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