Side Dish

Bites at taste

Imagine a competition for painters in which the contestants are required to create a work just 3 inches square or a contest for songwriters restricted to works just 30 seconds long. This may give you some idea of the pressure on chefs preparing food to set off the wines provided by members of the Washington Wine Commission for the annual Taste Washington buffet. Unwilling to wait for the doors to open to find out what's on the Taste Washington table, we managed to tease out the following information: not enough to plan one's four-hour trajectory through the Stadium Exhibition Center, but more than enough to whet the appetite. The Georgian Room, Four Seasons Olympic Hotel Gavin Stephenson has chosen to regale us with rabbit ravioli and fresh morels and green peas; the accompanying wines are two red blends, '99 Hedges Cellars Three Vineyards and Spring Valley's '00 Uriah from Walla Walla. Le Medusa Pan-seared caciocavallo cheese garnished with oil-cured olives and an herb vinaigrette to complement two '00 sangioveses from the Yakima Valley's Yellow Hawk and Pontin del Rosa. Tom Douglas Restaurants Charcoal-grilled flatiron steak with a chanterelle jam sets off a trio of syrahs: a '99 Columbia Crest reserve, Harlequin's '00 Sundance Vineyard bottling, and a '99 from K Vintners of Walla Walla. Christina's Homemade "lamb dogs" with a dab of syrah mustard to complement Pheasant Canyon's '00 syrah from Klingele Vineyard and Maryhill's '00 zinfandel. Waterfront Crostini topped with Dungeness crab, avocado, mango, and a wasabi mayonnaise with Shooting Star's '01 aligot鮍 Coho Caf鼯B> A cuplet of crab, shrimp, and fresh cod seafood bisque to go with Bridgman's '00 Yakima Valley viognier. Washington Athletic Club Grilled Columbia sturgeon on Indian flatbread, with a side of lentil salad with apple-ginger dressing; the wines—two syrahs, Barnard Griffin's '00 edition and Columbia Winery's '98 from Red Willow Vineyard. Rosario Resort and Spa Apple wood-smoked king salmon with asparagus salad and Meyer lemon aﯬi on a hazelnut cracker to savor with two chardonnays: San Juan Vineyards '00 from the Columbia Valley and Covey Run's Celilo Vineyard '98. Seattle Caviar Co. While the Caspian sturgeon takes a well-deserved rest, try these local dainties: Yellowstone River paddlefish roe, golden whitefish caviar, and chum salmon iku, washed down with Domaine Ste. Michelle's blanc de noirs and Mountain Dome brut. Taste Washington 2002, Sun., April 21, 5-9 p.m. $85. Stadium Exhibition Center, 1000 Occidental S. Tickets: Ticketmaster (628-0888) and many area wineshops.

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