Gail and I attended the annual fundraiser for the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture two nights ago. The evening was fun-filled, with behind-the-scenes visits to the museum’s research and storage spaces, a cocktail hour, dinner, a live auction, and much more.
Among the much more was a “wine grab,” in which participants donate a fixed amount of money to the museum, in return for which they get to choose a bottle of wine from a tableful. The bottles have their identities hidden in paper wrapping, lending a lottery-like feel to the enterprise. But every bottle retails for at least the donation amount, so that no one loses. Plus, of course, the museum raises some money.
This year, the wine grab had two tiers, $25 and $50. While I was talking to some of the guests at our table, Gail was off grabbing four $50 bottles. At the end of the evening, we received our bottles (still wrapped) in a wine-carrying tote bag. Once we got home and settled, we did the unveiling.
Here’s what we found.
1. One Burgundy: Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru “Mont-Luisants”, 2000, Jean-Paul Magnion.
2. One Washington wine: Leonetti Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, 2006, from the Walla Walla Valley.
3. A Napa Valley wine: Sullivan Vineyards Estate James O’Neil Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008.
4. A second Napa wine: Cakebread Cellars Dancing Bear Ranch 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon/Cabernet Franc.
From what little research we’ve done, it appears that we made out well in terms of cost, though of course the point is to support the museum, cost aside.
As a bonus, we also happened to bid successfully during the auction for two-day wine-tasting tour in the Walla Walla Valley, featuring four winery visits each day. Joining us will be a wine guide, the museum director (a geo-archaeologist, and a good friend), and the director’s husband (a geologist and friend as well). Thus we will learn simultaneously about the region’s wine and geology, returning far wiser.
A successful evening.