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Pepper Bridge is a family-owned winery located in Walla Walla, Washington. Managed by the McKibben, Goff, and Pellet families, Pepper Bridge produces a cabernet, a merlot, a reserve blend, and single vineyard cabernet and merlot. The winery is named after a military route that connected Fort Walla Walla with a post in Oregon.

Pepper Bridge’s estate vineyards, Pepper Bridge and Seven Hills, are considered two of the finest in Walla Walla Valley. Pepper Bridge Vineyard, which was originally planted in 1991, consists of 191 acres that surround the winery. This vineyard provides fruit to Leonetti Cellar, Woodward Canyon, L’Ecole N° 41, and Andrew Will as well as a number of other wineries. The Pepper Bridge Vineyard is managed by Tom Waliser, whose family owns Beresan Winery. Seven Hills, located on the southern edge of the Walla Walla AVA, consists of 210 acres planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Grand Vidure, Sangiovese, Sémillon, Syrah and Viognier. The winery shares ownership of Seven Hills with Leonetti and L’Ecole. Sustainable agricultural practices are given strong emphasis at both of these vineyards.

Pepper Bridge, which produced its first vintage in 1998, has an annual production of approximately 6,500 cases. Jean-François Pellet, who the winery recruited from Heitz in Napa Valley, serves as winemaker. Pellet also serves as winemaker for nearby Amavi Cellars and is president of Vinea, a Walla Walla winegrowers group that promotes sustainablity. Pepper Bridge maintains a blog you can read here. The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon will be released this month.

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Taste of Washington – What worked and what didn’t


Wines:

Score

Name

Notes

$

**

Pepper Bridge Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley 2006

A big, powerful wine with a complex nose marked by vanilla, anise, and syrup aromas. Gripping on the palate with a sprinkle of cinnamon. Drinking exceptionally well considering its age. 87% Cabernet; 8% Merlot; 2% Malbec; 2% Cab Franc; 1% Petit Verdot.

$50

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