Some of you may be wondering just who the Walla Walla Wine Ambassador is. My name is Kent Settle. I graduated from Whitman College a few years back and always loved the town. Sometime around 2005 I started bringing my wife, Eileen to Walla Walla to explore the burgeoning wine industry. She too fell in love with the town. After several visits we decided Walla Walla was the place to call home and we moved here in 2008.
Our love affair with wine began back in 1999 when we spent a wonderful three-day weekend at the Salish Lodge in Snoqualmie, Washington. Friday we challenged the Cellar Master, Randy Austin to provide a wine that would go with my lamb and Eileen’s rabbit. A wonderful French Champaign did the trick nicely. Saturday we chatted with Randy quite a bit about wine. Sunday evening, he spent more than half an hour sitting at our table. He could see a spark had been ignited and a couple of wine lovers had emerged.
Since that weekend we have visited wineries in California, Oregon and Washington. We have been to over 90 wineries in the Walla Walla Valley, and have visited several of our favorites dozens of time. We have chatted at length with many wine makers, tasted quite a few wines from the barrel, helped bottle thousands of cases of wine, poured wine at various events and sorted and stomped grapes.
We thoroughly enjoy showing off all of what our valley has to offer, especially the wineries and restaurants. Many friends and family members have come to visit and we have exposed them to the quality of the local wine industry. Over the years they have left the valley with hundreds of cases of wine, dined in many of our favorite restaurants, shopped at our local shops and enjoyed several of our live music venues.