Saviah Cellars Wine Pairing (Week of December 1, 2020)

This weeks wine pairing is so perfect for our store! Italian in more ways than one! I had the pleasure of knowing, quite well, the family that inspired this wine and it is a proud link of Italian Heritage. Paired with the finest Italian meats and cheeses, it is a gift or a treat well worth the drive out here…I promise! Order your charcuterie, cheese and wine box today! Order ahead please.

Saviah Cellars 2014 Laurella

50% Sangiovese, Dugger Creek Vineyard
18% Syrah, Lewis Vineyard
16% Cabernet Franc, Summit View Vineyard
16% Merlot, Anna Marie Vineyard

A Tuscan-inspired blend sharing new world winemaking with traditional grape varietals, creating an elegant, luscious wine with a core of dark red fruit along with savory sweet herbs on the nose. Flavors showing notes of olive and dried cherry complemented by savory, dusty tannins and a long finish.

An ode to Sam and Theresa Laurella’s family.

Sam’s Obituary:

Samuel “Sam” Laurella was born on January 30, 1921, in Italy to Giovanni Laurella and Maria Antonia Perfetto. He came to the United States when he was 17 years old and worked for the U.S. forest service in Avery, Idaho. He later worked for Boeing in Seattle before joining the U.S. Air Corps and served for three years during World War II in the European Theatre. He was honorably discharged as staff sergeant. On August 30, 1945, he married Theresa Destito at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Walla Walla.

He later worked for the Walla Walla Meat and Cold Storage, the Union Pacific Railroad, and farmed part time. He retired from his job as a carpenter with the Walla Walla School District #140 in 1983. In addition, he devoted many years working for the Consolidated Water District #14. After retirement, he continued to drive school bus for the School District, worked for the U.S. Forest Service and volunteered at St Mary Medical Center.

History of Rich and Sam

Rich met Sam Laurella when Rich worked for the county as an Environmental Health Specialist and Sam worked for the water district. As time passed, they discovered they both had an interest in making wine.

Sam had made homemade wine for his large Italian family so he was very familiar with this process. This was many years ago and there were not a lot of grapes available here in Walla Walla, so he had to buy grapes from outside of the area. One day the Feds followed a truck full of grapes headed to Sam’s place. When they got there, they made Sam bond his garage and pay taxes on those grapes, which Sam did not appreciate as he was making wine for his family only, not to sell!

With the love of winemaking in common, Sam and Rich had become friends and when Rich started Saviah Cellars in 2000 Sam would come out and help during crush, well into his 80s.Rich named his super Tuscan blend Laurella in honor of Sam, his good friend and fellow vintner. Sam’s original bonding papers and the wine press he used for years making wine for his family are at Saviah Cellars to this day.

Sam passed on a few years back – he was in his 90s. His daughters still live close and enjoy the wine that bears their family name.