LOCUS WINES OPENS NEW TASTING ROOM SHOWCASING FOOD-FORWARD WINE IN OCCIDENTAL SQUARE

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Celebrating the intersection of wine and food, Locus Wines provides a twist on the traditional tasting room

Locus Wines, a Seattle-based urban winery, is opening its first dedicated tasting room on November 16 in Occidental Square. With an emphasis on showcasing how food and wine can elevate one another, Locus Wines has created a modern, approachable setting where guests can discover its offerings, enjoy a quick glass and a snack, or settle in for a full evening of curated pairings.

Since 2012, Locus Wines has held numerous tasting events pairing each wine pour with a complementary bite. The pairings are now a staple and important tradition for the winery.

“Wine tasting on its own can be a great experience. By combining wine and food, we believe that we can elevate that experience,” says Rich Burton, winemaker (WSU Enology graduate) and co-founder of the company. “It’s our combined passion for food and wine that sets us apart as a one-of-a-kind Seattle tasting room.”

Burton draws inspirations from European wines: high acidity, judicious use of oak and with just a touch of fruit. He is particularly fond of the Rhone reds and Bordeaux whites in Washington state, but finds time to experiment with other interesting varietals.

Ton Yazici, co-founder and general manager of the tasting room, developed the menu with inspiration from his Mediterranean heritage. As a caterer and a culinary instructor in Seattle, Yazici knows what works with the wines and has mastered the art of amplifying complex flavors that perfectly complement Locus’s varietals.

“Through our other tasting events, I’ve taken a few chances and broken a few food-and-wine pairing rules. This gave me the luxury of time and variety to discover what works with our wines,” said Yazici. “I think we’ve landed in a place where the combination of food and wine as an experience feels like it is greater than the sum of its parts.”

The new tasting room will pour 14 current releases, including two on tap. Three flights will be available ($14-17), as well as bottles to go or enjoy in-house. Glasses ($8-$16) and flights will have the option to add curated food pairings for an additional $10.

Sample seasonal pairings include the 2015 Locus Nord (Syrah blend) and wild mushroom risotto; the 2015 Locus Red and caramelized onion and lamb pastry square; and the 2016 Locus Rosé and roasted turkey breast and cranberry-orange relish. The menu will feature a full-size salad, an entrée, a charcuterie and cheese board, and a Mediterranean meze board with hummus, baba ghanoush and phyllo pastry squares. Food items range in size from small bites and large appetizers, to full lunch or dinner plates.

On tap for the new tasting room will be a calendar of wine tasting and pairing events with special programming for Locus Wines’ club members. Called Socius, the club provides three member levels, exclusive releases and tiered discounts. The space is also available for private events.

Locus Wines will be open Wednesday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.locuswines.com.

About Locus Wines

Latin for ‘location’, Locus Wines sources fruit from cooler climate vineyards in the Yakima Valley and Naches Heights AVAs of Washington State to produce unique, handcrafted wines that best showcase where they were sourced. Locus’ old World-like approach to Syrah, Cinsault, Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc produces wines with higher acidity and less oak that are approachable and destined for food pairing. The company currently works with seven different vineyards and produces its wines in Yakima. www.locuswines.com

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