Tim Stevens was studying English literature and working in a restaurant to make ends meet when he first became interested in wine. He subsequently met winemaker Matthew Loso at a tasting group in what would become a fateful meeting. He worked for two years as Loso’s assistant winemaker at Matthews (Loso has since moved on). After a consulting stint with Scott Greer at Sheridan Vineyard, Stevens and his wife Paige started Stevens Winery in 2002.

Stevens Winery has focused on small lot production of Cabernet, Merlot, Syrah, Malbec, Viognier, and Sauvignon Blanc. Formerly a commercial artist, each of the wines bear a unique label every vintage.

The 2009 Stevens Another Thought Sauvignon Blanc comes from Red Mountain’s Klipsun Vineyard. While this vineyard is best known for it’s powerful, tannic red wines, the 2009 Stevens wine shows that white wines can also excel there as well. The winery’s website gives a comical description of the wine stating, “White wine can be a monster to make and sometimes needs a lot of babysitting. We’ve done our share of watching this little devil and its paid off; this is our best Blanc yet.” Indeed this is an extremely compelling bottle with varietal aromatics of grass and herbal notes complemented by a palate loaded with fruit balanced by crisp acidity.

The front label on the bottle whimsically reads as follows: “Another Thought by Tim Stevens. I think too much and I know it. Mostly the wheels are just spinning. So here’s yet another thought. Good wine is good, but I believe that time and space play a role on how really ‘great’ it may taste. It could be you’re laughing with friends so hard you’re crying. Sip. Maybe you’re sitting on the back deck on a warm summer’s night. Sip. You think to yourself, boy does that taste amazing! I hope and pray, that, just maybe, one of my bottles finds this magical place. Anyway, it was just a thought.”

This wine did indeed find such a magical place. It is an exceptional summer wine that screams out for seafood. I purchased this bottle from Full Pull Wines, which continues to excel with its hand picked e-mail offerings.

Stevens Winery Another Thought Sauvignon Blanc Yakima Valley 2009 $19
Rating: * (Excellent) An intriguing nose with lime zest, grass, herbal notes, and mineral. Beautifully balanced and rounded on a palate full of crisp fruit flavors and a long, lingering finish. 100% Sauvignon Blanc. Klipsun Vineyard. Aged in stainless steel. 13.9% alcohol. 120 cases produced.