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Production: (1998) 625 cases, (1999) 900 cases
Vineyards: contracting with Tapteil and Ciel du Cheval on Red Mountain, and with Spring Valley Vineyard in Walla Walla. 10.5 acres of estate vineyard on Red Mountain to be planted in the near future.
Distribution: Self; expected: McCarthy & Schiering and Pike & Western.
Ben has been a mechanical engineer at Boeing since 1986. He started making beer at home in 1991, and enjoyed it, but was a bit diappointed with the results. The following year he tried his hand at making wine, and had much better results! He continued on his own until 1995, and joined the Boeing Employees Amateur Winemaking Club. Starting in 1994, and until starting his own winery, he worked with Chris Carmda of Andrew Will in order to learn more about the trade. He's also taken U.C.Davis Short Courses. Some of these earlier efforts must've been pretty good, as he took home top awards from the Boeing Wine Club and the Monroe Fair judgings between 1994 and 1996.
Gaye and Ben met at a party of mutual friends in 1993 and have been together since. They decided to go into this venture together and share all duties of the winery -- Ben may be the figurehead, but Gaye is right there for every part of it!
The Wines: Current releases (Fall 1999)
Benjamin L. Smith 1998-present
Of special note:
They plan a yearly release party in May.
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