Sean Boyd is a downright awesome guy who is a blast to talk wine with. The mastermind behind Rotie Cellars and originally from Tacoma, Sean previously worked as a geologist for ten years in oil and gas exploration. In 2004 he worked his first harvest at Waters Winery in 2004. Sean finally made the decision to open his own winery 2007, focusing solely on Rhone varietals. Sean’s background in soil and mineralology has been a great asset for him. Going out to the vineyard with him, he talked about the importance of location in the Walla Walla Rocks region. I would say that Sean’s winemaking style is a blend of old world mineralogy and new world fruit for his wines. He has performed particularly well in warm vintages and I was hugely impressed with his new set of red and white wines. While he initially started his winery in Walla Walla he also has an awesome looking tasting room near Kerloo, Sleight of Hand and Structure in the SoDo district of Seattle.
He has crafted some great new wines. Rotie are just gorgeous. His 2015 ‘Northern Blend’ Red Wine (WWB, 94) is a polished Syrah wine from the Walla Walla Rocks region that shows gorgeous terroir and a silky mouthfeel. This is an outstanding value from one of the premier growing regions in Washington. Also impressive was the 2015 Rotie Cellars ‘Southern Blend’ Red Wine (WWB, 93) which showed a feminine character and a plush mouthfeel. Learn more about these outstanding wines at https://www.rotiecellars.com Here are the great new wines by Rotie Cellars.
2016 Rotie Cellars Grenache Blanc- This refreshing white wine begins with aromatics of lemongrass, honeydew melon and marzipan. The texture and astringency is lovely as the wine reveals brioche, Meyer lemon, cut grass and green papaya flavors. You have to love the mouthfeel at play. Drink 2017-2022- 91
2016 Rotie Cellars 'Northern White' White Wine- A blend of 67% Marsanne and 33% Roussanne, this is highly talented winemaker Sean Boyd's take on a Northern Rhone white. This has aromatics of white peach, pink grapefruit blossom and lychee as the wine shows an exotic edge. The mouthfeel is lovely as the plush texture shows off flavors reminiscent of brioche, cantaloupe and vanilla cream. This finishes long. Drink 2017-2023- 92
2016 Rotie Cellars 'Southern White' White Wine-This wine is a heady blend of 50% Viognier, 35% Roussanne with the remainder Marsanne. This great wine opens with a bright bouquet of honeysuckle, Challah bread, white peach and lemon blossom. Lively and light on its feet the wine shows off Welches white grape juice, lychee, cantaloupe and nectarine flavors that sit alongside a silky texture. Drink 2017-2023- 92
2015 Rotie Cellars 'Southern Blend' Red Wine- This wine is an outstanding blend of 70% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre and 5% Syrah. The wine shows off exotic spices, red cherry preserves, pomegranate seed and suggestions of orange rind on the nose. Silky flavors of cran-pomegranate, red cherry cough syrup, and blood orange impress. Feminine and sexy, this is an outstanding wine made by Sean Boyd. Drink 2017-2027- 93
2015 Rotie Cellars 'Northern Blend' Red Wine- This wine is a compelling blend of 95% Syrah with the remainder co-fermented Viognier, all sourced from the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater. The wine opens with a bright aromatic profile of blood orange, wet stone, red cherry preserves and smoked brisket. The wine has a silky texture and downright delicious flavors of blood orange, wet stone, pomegranate seed and red raspberry cordial. The range here is gorgeous. Drink 2017-2028- 94