Note: This month’s Virtual Tasting is the L’Ecole No 41 Red Wine and takes place Tuesday at 7pm Pacific. Read about how to participate here.

The 2008 Leonetti Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon from Walla Walla Valley was served last week at the White House State Dinner with British Prime Minister David Cameron.

Figgins Family Wine Estates President and Winemaking Director Chris Figgins wrote in an e-mail to the winery’s customers, “My family and I are truly honored to be recognized for our quality efforts over 34 years with this rare and coveted occasion. My parents never dreamed their passion to make great wines would earn such a spot of honor.”

The wine was served along with the main course of Bison Wellington with a red wine reduction, French beans, and cipollini onions. In addition to the Leonetti wine, a 2009 Peter Michael Chardonnay Ma Belle-Fille and a 2007 Iron Horse Vineyards Russian Cuvée, both hailing from California, were served.

A number of Washington wines have been served at State Dinners in the past. In fact, last year two Washington wines were served at the State Dinner with the Chinese Premier Hu Jintao (see a post on this dinner here). Since then the White House has not made the wine list public due to sensitivities about cost in the current economic climate (read a recent article by Bloomberg about this here).

However, Erik LeVine of Cellar Tracker, who attended last week’s dinner as his wife’s guest, subsequently wrote about the wines on his blog (read the post here). Numerous news outlets then picked up on the story, proving once again that it’s hard to keep something secret when several hundred people know about it.

Having a wine served at a White House State Dinner is not only an honor, it can also help drive brand recognition and sales. Quilceda Creek General Manager John Ware noted in the Bloomberg article that the winery’s profile in Asia received a boost after the Jintao dinner last year.