After a three-year hiatus, Taste Washington is back for 2023. The 24th edition of the gathering includes new and returning touches that expand the festivities beyond the always lively Grand Tasting at Lumen Field Event Center.
Taste Washington 2023 highlights:
- February3–18: Field to Table
- March 6–10: Taste Week dinners, seafood bash and lounge night
- March 11–12: The Grand Tasting
- March 13: No Frills! The after-party
The Grand Tasting
I’ll skip chronology to get to the Grand Tasting. Because it’s hard to find a better single setting for exploring Washington wine than Taste’s main event, which takes place March 11–12.
It takes hours to travel between Washington’s wine regions: Yakima Valley, Red Mountain, Walla Walla, Lake Chelan and the Columbia Gorge. to name a few. Taste’s Grand Tasting brings the wineries to you.
As in years past, you’ll get to sample selections from more than 250 Washington wineries, while chefs from across the Puget Sound–area dish out wine-friendly bites.
The Grand Tasting never disappoints, and here are additional ways Taste Washington 2023 lets you get your gourmet on as you sip, nibble, nosh and/or feast.
February’s tastes of Taste
The addition of the Field to Table dinner series at Lumen Field to the Taste lineup coincides with SE Productions’ arrival as Taste’s new producer, with the Washington Wine Commission.
Seattle-based SE Productions launched Field to Table during the pandemic. The popularity of the initial series in 2021 spurred reprises in Seattle and a sister series in California.
Field to Table features four-course dinners served in a covered, heated dining area set up on the stadium’s turf, with each night’s feast prepared by a different chef or team of chefs.
Spinasse’s Stuart Lane kicks off the series on Feb. 3 with the first of 13 dinners over 16-nights.
The series includes modern Korean flavors on Valentine’s evening by WeRo’s Wes Yoo. It wraps up Feb. 18 with a collaboration by Kamonegi’s Mutsuko Soma and private chef Kaleena Bliss.
Prices start at $129 per person. The rate does not include beverages, taxes or gratuities.
Taste Washington’s 2023 dinners and fetes
Taste Washington Week 2023 begins in earnest on March 6 with an additional dinner series followed by bigger bashes in an around Seattle.
Another dinner series?
That’s right! Taste 2023 features not one, but two separate dinner series. The Taste Week dinner series features wine-paired dinners in different Seattle-area venues over three nights.
You’ll have to buy tickets to the Monday night dinner to figure out where Where Ya At Matt’s Matt Lewis is dishing up his collaboration with Gravy’s Dre Neely. So far, event organizers are only calling it a “secret Vashon Island location.”
Eight Row’s David Nichols teams with Hitchcock restaurant group’s Brendan McGill for Tuesday night’s dinner at Nichols’s Green Lake–area restaurant.
The wineries to be featured in the first two dinners have not yet been announced.
The Wednesday night dinner features Col Solare winemaker Stephanie Cohen pouring her varietals and blends in a wine-paired dinner crafted by Aaron Tekulve at his Surrell restaurant in Seattle.
Early-bird pricing for the dinner series began at $250 per person, which includes dinner and wine, as well as meet-and-greets with the chefs and winemakers.
Taste organizers turn up the volume with Thursday and Friday night bashes at separate Seattle venues.
Thursday night’s Pacific Standard brings the festivities to the Waterfront, although the specific location has yet to be announced. The walk-around tasting features white wines, rosés and sparkling wines to wash down seafood bites from area chefs.
Taste goes clubbing on Friday night with the return of the New Vintage, a late-ish night shindig featuring DJ beats, late night eats, wine and spirits.
Tickets for Pacific Standard and New Vintage are listed at $125 per person for each event.
Don’t forget about Taste Washington’s seminars
It’s easy to get caught up in the frenzy of the Grand Tasting. However, the pre-tasting seminars at the Four Seasons let you raise your wine-knowledge game and raise a glass to sample wines related to each session’s theme.
Since three seminars take place on each morning of the Grand Tasting, you’ll have to pick one for each day. Among the highlights:
On Saturday: Wine educator Elaine Chukan Brown showcases the common thread between the world’s finest wines.
On Sunday: Full Pull Wines founder Paul Zitarelli shines a spotlight on Washington’s emerging sparkling wines.
Sunday brunch and Monday’s after-party
You can get a jump on your Sunday Taste at the “progressive brunch” at two restaurants in Bellevue’s Lincoln Center. Get your first bites and sips in at Lakehouse Bellevue. Then head up the tower to Ascend Prime Steak & Sushi for a few more courses.
Early bird pricing for brunch begins at $115 and includes food, two beverages at each restaurant and meet-and-greets with chefs and winemakers.
In the spirit of Industry Night, this year’s Taste Washington event series includes a Monday night after-party dubbed No Frills! The party after the party showcases go-to after-work snacks created by yet-to-be announced Seattle chefs, paired with their favorite wines.
No Frills takes place at WithinSoDo, about a mile south of Lumen Field. At last check, tickets were running $95 a pop.