Wine is made from grapes’ fermented tears, which vintners provoke by stomping on them or threatening to turn them into jelly and make them marry peanut butter. Raise a glass to the grape’s sacrifice with today’s Groupon to Barrel Room No. 6, owned by Coeur d’Alene Cellars, in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Choose between the following options:
- For $12, you get $25 worth of food and wine.
- For $18, you get two glasses of wine and a small plate (up to a $36.50 value).<p>
Servers at Barrel Room No. 6 distribute microbrews, plate light fare, and pour top-flight wines crafted with fruits from eastern Washington by the vintners at Coeur d’Alene Cellars, which Wine Press Northwest named 2010 Idaho Winery of the Year. Each of the wine bar’s staff has helped harvest and bottle wines including the 2006 Envy, which has hints of Cajun spices and cherry ($10/glass, $38/bottle), and the 2006 Alder Ridge syrah, which combines rich flavors and a smooth mouth-feel better than a crushed-velvet popsicle ($12/glass, $46/bottle). The wine bar’s menu also presents a selection of downsized platters and light fare. The mediterranean plate’s warm pita takes dips into a hummus sea swimming with feta, cucumber slices, and kalamata olives ($12), and a demi-baguette is slathered with spinach artichoke dip ($7.50). Patrons at Barrel Room No. 6 engage in a full sensory feast, sipping romantic lighting with their eyes, live music with their ears, and fine wine with special wine ports in their knuckles.
Barrel Room No. 6 is closing: they will be accepting Groupons through January 31. From March 3–31, Groupon purchasers can redeem at the winery, which is located at 3890 North Schrieber Way.
Coeur d’Alene Cellars
If one word had to describe Coeur d’Alene Cellars’ attitude toward winemaking, it would probably be "meticulous." During each stage of creation, from vineyard selection and harvest to bottling, winemakers carefully supervise and adjust conditions to suit their visions. They hand-harvest fruit from their eastern Washington vineyards only on days that fit specific temperature conditions. Between pickings, the vines are pruned for low yields that concentrate flavor and quality. And their syrah and viognier grapes are both hand-sorted the night of harvest before they’re pressed and fermented.
That process is carefully controlled as well. Syrah blends first ferment in open-top vessels, allowing for closer management of color and tannins. Only later do they age inside French and American oak barrels, like former daredevils bent on reliving their trip over Niagara Falls. Viognier blends, on the other hand, spend both fermentation and aging periods in small oak barrels.
The resulting well-balanced wines can claim myriad accolades from publications such as Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast. Their 2004 Sarah’s cuvée viognier, for instance, earned 89 points from Wine Enthusiast, which praised its "good balance" of "peach, apricot, sour lemon candy and even a bit of cinnamon." Current vintages include the 2007 Alder Ridge Vineyard syrah, whose smooth body supports flavors of berries, vanilla, and cinnamon that conclude in a lingering finish.
These and other wines are poured at Coeur d'Alene's onsite wine bar, Barrel Room No. 6. Inside, sleek red walls help create an upscale vibe. Glasses perch beneath pendant lighting on the bar or glitter on top of old wine barrels repurposed as tables. As customers sip, knowledgeable wait staff can suggest ways to bring out the wines' subtle flavors by nibbling aromatic cheese pairings or the hem of a neighbor’s freshly laundered shirt.