Ste Michelle Wine Estates in Washington has been a trailblazer for the industry in that formerly-floundering state. But these guys are the champions, the teachers and trailblazers for the small- to mid-sized wineries in eastern Washington. You might think of rainy Seattle when you think of this place but on the other side of the Cascades lies dry, sunny landscapes that can grow some incredible grapes. Like those used in this bottle ‘o bubbly. This refreshingly tart chardonnay and pinot noir blend belies its $12 price tag, bursting with pear, lemon and green apple. It finishes dry with a yeasty bread goodness. Worth twice the price.
Domaine Ste. Michelle Brut
Sw=1, $12, 3.5 stars
Also try their Blanc de Noirs and Blanc de Blancs, both $12