Business News for Bellevue and the Eastside of Lake Washington

Rapid-fire bidding at Reveal Walla Walla Valley trade auction drives lot values up by nearly 30 percent

Reveal Walla Walla ValleyReveal Walla Walla Valley, an annual wine futures auction for the wine trade, raised $88,300 on Monday, April 10, 2017. Nearly one dozen bidders snapped-up the 30 exclusive auction lots in under 45 minutes. The average price per lot increased by 28 percent compared to the inaugural event in 2016. 

The goal of the auction is in the name — the winemakers and vineyard owners allow the fruit from the Walla Walla Valley to reveal itself through incredibly rare wines that exist nowhere else, wines created specifically for this auction for discerning trade.

“For us as retailers, we’re always looking for the next great wine region and we’ve been closely following the wines of the Walla Walla Valley for about eight years,” said Jaime Stratton, owner of Jacob’s Liquor Exchange in Wichita, Kansas. “Reveal Walla Walla is the most dynamic auction we’ve attended and we’re excited to watch it grow in the future.” Commented Senior Wine Buyer and Social Media Manager Whitney Stratton, “The impeccable balance makes them true collector wines that will only improve with age—exactly what our clients are looking for.”

The 2017 auction hosted guests from Canada and throughout the United States, and the auction’s top bidders hailed from the Midwest. The top three lots sold were Leonetti Cellar, Doubleback, and Abeja for $6,500, $4,800, and $4,400 respectively.

Perhaps the most memorable part of the event was the opportunity for bidders to hear from legendary NFL quarterback and Walla Walla native, Drew Bledsoe of Doubleback, and Walla Walla Valley wine industry legend, Norm McKibben of Amavi Cellars and Pepper Bridge Winery. In an unforgettable talk, the two honorary co-chairs connected the dots between past and present in a way that highlights the future of the Walla Walla Valley wine region.

“The auction is designed for intimacy, we want bidders to become a part of this close-knit community and form deep relationships during their time here.” said Heather Unwin, executive director of the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance. “The relationships don’t stop at the slam of the gavel; they will continue well into the future.”

Reveal Walla Walla Valley is an invitation-only, two-day event series where trade attendees have the opportunity to sample library wines and auction lot futures, participate in the auction, and dine on local cuisine alongside winemakers at a variety of the Valley’s most unique and historic venues. The auction event was facilitated by renown auctioneer and author Ursula Hemacinski.

All proceeds from Reveal Walla Walla Valley benefit the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance, a non-profit membership marketing organization.

 The Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance is a non-profit wine industry membership organization whose primary mission is the marketing of the Walla Walla Valley’s American Viticultural Area (AVA).  The Wine Alliance functions as the leading informational resource for consumers, media and trade interested in learning more about the Valley’s wine industry.  More information about the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance and its mission can be found at www.wallawallawine.com

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