I met Greg Harrington when he came into Gaston two years ago. He looked at the wine list for about 5 minutes and picked out two of my favorite bottles from our cellar.
They were the kind of bottles that made a statement: they were both off the beaten track yet satisfied the classically trained palate. His company ordered burgers and I happily skipped off to the cellar to fetch his bottles, anxious to open them up to see how they were doing. He graciously offered me a glass. At the end of their meal I finally had to ask if they worked in the wine business and came to find out that Harrington made wine himself in Washington after working many years as a Sommelier at some of the top restaurants in the US. As it turns out, in this small small world, we were able to swap some fun stories about people we had both worked with in San Francisco.
At that point, I had not heard of his winery, Gramercy Cellars. After meeting Harrington, I was anxious to try his wines especially after reading a bit about his use of whole cluster Syrah. I suspected that wine made by someone who worked as a sommelier for so many years would put their knowledge of the European classics to use in the new world. They would try to express the same degree of terroir as some of the greats within the old world tradition
Sure enough, Harrington’s wines are a delight. A true homage to the Côte Rôtie style. The wines give a sense of place. They do not hide that they come from a climate warmer than the Northern Rhône but they do not lack in freshness. By fermenting from 20-50 percent of the Syrah grapes with their stems, Gramercy Cellars delivers a bit of saltiness and silky texture. I am very happy that Fine Wines is now importing these gems to Sweden and even more excited to have The Columbia Valley cuvee represented both on Gastonvin.se as well as the cuvee some of his single vineyard expressions at the wine bar.
Erin Stockton, sommelier at Gaston winebar.