Overview


Washington Wine Report is an independent publication focused on bringing Northwest wine to you and bringing you to Northwest wine. Our goal is:
  • To help you select Pacific Northwest wines at a variety of price levels
  • To keep you up-to-date about the Northwest’s wineries, vineyards, and individuals
  • To help you plan trips to wine country
  • To connect you to the larger wine community

Search

'17 Tour Guide

Reviewed Wineries

Wine Enthusiast Reviews for July 2017

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Below are my Wine Enthusiast reviews for July 2017. Wines are listed alphabetically by winery. Read additional information on how I review wines here. All of these reviews are freely available on-line at the Wine Enthusiast Buying Guide. There is also a freely available Wine Enthusiast Tasting Guide app. See previous Wine Enthusiast reviews re-published in this space here. Search Wine Enthusiast's on-line database here.

125 wines reviewed in the July issue of Wine Enthusiast. They include a great Syrah from Eight Bells (Eight Bells 2014 Eight Clones Red Willow Vineyard Syrah Yakima Valley $3592 points).

Kerloo Cellars impresses with its Kerloo 2015 No Joke Stone Tree Vineyard Red Blend Wahluke Slope ($4091 points) and Kerloo 2015 Blue Mountain Vineyard Syrah Walla Walla Valley ($2090 points). The latter is an outstanding value for Washington Syrah.

Kevin White continues to hit home runs with his Kevin White 2014 DuBrul Vineyard Red Blend Yakima Valley ($3592 points) and Kevin White 2015 Red Blend Yakima Valley ($1892 points). The latter wine is, to date, this year’s best value but is unfortunately long gone. Keep an eye out for the next vintage will I expect to be released next spring.

Saviah Cellars makes a knock-out value wine with its Saviah 2015 The Jack Syrah Columbia Valley ($1890 points). Moving up the price ladder, their Saviah 2014 Syrah Walla Walla Valley ($3293 points) and Saviah 2014 The Funk Estate Syrah Walla Walla Valley ($6094 points) are not to be missed.

The Trust Cellars 2014 Syrah Walla Walla Valley ($3292 points) provides exceptional quality and value.

Waters Winery produces this vintage’s best rosé (Waters 2016 Patina Vineyard Rosé Walla Walla Valley $2292 points). The Waters 2014 Stone Tree Malbec Wahluke Slope ($3293 points) is shamelessly delicious. For Rocks lovers out there, check out the Waters 2014 Old Stones Syrah Walla Walla Valley ($5094 points). This could be the winery’s best Syrah since its heralded 2007 Forgotten Hills Syrah.

Enjoy!

* * *

21 Grams 2012 Red Blend Washington $125 93 points
High-toned aromas of cranberry, herb, black licorice and dried cherry are followed by tightly wound dark-fruit flavors backed by firm tannins. The finish extends into the distance. It’s a highly structured wine, with its best days far in front of it. Best from 2021 through 2027. Cellar Selection

Airfield Estates 2013 Aviator Red Blend Yakima Valley $30 84 points
This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Merlot (26%), Cabernet Franc (10%), Petit Verdot (2%) and Malbec. Aromas of tire rubber and green pepper bring some distraction to the notes of spice and plum. The palate seems disjointed, with oddly smoky flavors that seem out of place.

Airfield Estates 2015 Viognier Yakima Valley $15 87 points
Aromas of tangerine zest, peach and flower are followed by dry clean fruit flavors that show no apparent oak influence, with citrus notes lingering on the finish.

Airfield Estates 2016 Sangiovese Rosé Yakima Valley $15 88 points
A very pale peach color, this wine brings bright aromas of strawberry Jolly Rancher, cherry and kiwi. It drinks just a hair off dry, with tart fruit flavors, providing plenty of easy-drinking pleasure.

Amavi 2015 Estate Vineyards Sémillon Walla Walla Valley $24 89 points
Blended with 12% Sauvignon Blanc and coming from a mixture of Les Collines, Goff and Seven Hills vineyards, this wine brings aromas of lees and fig that are followed by lightly creamy well-balanced fruit flavors. It brings an elegant styling.

Amavi 2014 Estate Syrah Walla Walla Valley $33 90 points
This wine is a blend of Les Collines, Stone Valley, Seven Hills, Pepper Bridge and Summit View fruit. The aromas of plum, stem and herb haven’t yet fully revealed themselves. The flavors are lush and layered, with the tannins bringing a touch of astringency on first pour, settling out over time. Best after 2018 or with a short decant.

Amavi 2014 Estate Vineyards Les Collines Vineyard Syrah Walla Walla Valley $41 92 points
Aromas of crushed violets, dried herb, smoked meat and plum lead to focused, pure marionberry flavors. The concentration and texture are impressive, as is the balance.

Amavi 2014 Estate Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley $33 89 points
Herb, plum, spice and black-currant aromas are followed by well-balanced fruit flavors. The tannins bring some dryness, needing time to stretch their legs. Give it a short decant.

Apex 2014 Merlot Columbia Valley $30 89 points
The aromas offer notes of cocoa, herb, cedar, cherry and barrel spice. The palate is somewhat barrel-forward but otherwise shows a pleasing sense of balance along with a lingering finish.

Armstrong Family 2014 Petit Verdot Yakima Valley $36 87 points
The definition of 100% varietal, this wine brings bright aromas of fresh cranberries along with herbs and rose hips. Tart full cranberry flavors follow, with burly dry tannins backing them up. It needs some food to bring the tannins in check.

Armstrong Family 2014 Fronk Cabernet Franc Yakima Valley $32 87 points
This 100% varietal wine shows aromas of herb and cherry, along with whiffs of tire rubber. The palate is both sweet and tart, pulling up on the finish. The tannins bring some grip.

Barnard Griffin 2015 Riesling Columbia Valley $11 86 points
This wine is still coming out of its shell, with lightly reduced aromas of mandarin orange, fresh flowers, and citrus. It drinks bone dry, with silky-feeling fruit flavors providing intrigue but not entirely delivering. The aromas and flavors don’t seem to match up. Best Buy

Barnard Griffin 2016 Estate Bottled Pinot Gris Columbia Valley $13 87 points
The aromas are bright, with notes of whole cantaloupe, candle wax and ripe sliced banana. The palate is bone dry, with tart, lemony acids providing the structure. Bitters linger on the finish.

Barnard Griffin 2016 Rosé of Sangiovese Columbia Valley $14 87 points
Electric pink in color, the aromas are light, with notes of cherry, strawberry and herb. It drinks dry with tart elegant fruit flavors that linger.

Browne Family Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay Columbia Valley $26 89 points
Light aromas of toast, melon and butter lead to sleek stone and tropical fruit flavors that persist on the finish.

Browne Family Vineyards 2016 Grenache Rosé Columbia Valley $17 85 points
This wine is a very pale peach color. Aromas of strawberry candy, watermelon and citrus peel lead to light dry-fruit flavors. The concentration seems a bit lacking.

Browne Family Vineyards 2015 Heritage Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $NA 88 points
Aromas of black currant, licorice, plum and dried herb are followed by elegant flavors. The tannins show a touch of dryness.

Browne Family Vineyards 2014 Tribute Red Blend Columbia Valley $31 88 points
Merlot (39%) takes the lead on this blend followed by Cabernet Sauvignon (24%), Malbec (15%), Petit Verdot (10%), Petite Sirah (6%) and Carménère. Scents of barrel spice, dark fruit, vanilla and herb are followed by cranberry and cherry flavors, speckled with barrel spices. Grainy tannins provide support.

Canoe Ridge 2016 The Expedition Sauvignon Blanc Horse Heaven Hills $16 82 points
Light aromas of candle wax, kiwi and citrus lead to diluted fruit flavors. It lacks a sense of cohesion or variety.

Castillo De Feliciana 2013 Reserve Red Wine Tempranillo Walla Walla Valley $40 86 points
The aromas are up front, with barrel notes of char, vanilla, coconut and baking spice followed by cigar box. The wood really shows through on the palate as well, with the tannins bringing a strong sense of astringency.

Castillo De Feliciana 2015 Brillánte Brut Sparkling Wine Méthode Traditionnelle Chardonnay Columbia Valley $30 87 points
All Chardonnay, this wine brings aromas of the underside of a pineapple along with apple and tropical-fruit notes. The flavors show the warmth of the vintage and bring a bit more sweetness than often seen on a brut.

Cedar River Cellars 2014 Seattle’s Son Malbec Yakima Valley $40 87 points
Coming from Two Blondes Vineyard, aromas of baking spice, barrel spice, herb, mesquite and cherry are followed by elegant smooth-feeling fruit flavors. Light bacon notes provide unusual accents. It’s intriguing, though the variety is hard to find.

Cedar River Cellars 2014 It’s a Long Way Barrel Select Cabernet Franc Yakima Valley $40 87 points
Hailing from Two Blondes Vineyard, the aromas bring unusual, not entirely married notes of ham hock, bacon fat, herb and vanilla. The palate mixes smooth-feeling fruit and savory flavors. It’s a unique wine, not for all tastes.

Cedar River Cellars 2014 Bella Bella Syrah Columbia Valley $32 89 points
All coming from Burgess Vineyards, unusual aromas of gun smoke, purple fruit, herb, baking spice and ham hock lead to softly textured fruit and savory flavors. It brings plenty of intrigue but it’s not for all tastes.

Den Hoed 2013 Marie’s View Wallula Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills $80 88 points
The aromas show notes of herb, jalapeño pepper, dark fruit, and barrel spice, with the alcohol poking through a touch. The flavors are medium bodied, brightened by tart acidity. Grainy tannins back it all up.

Den Hoed 2013 Andreas Wallula Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills $80 91 points
The aromas are locked up at present, with notes of barrel spice, clove, herb and brooding dark fruit. The fruit and barrel flavors are concentrated and tightly wound. The oak is predominant at present. Give it some time in the cellar to strut its stuff. Best after 2022. Cellar Selection

Dusty Cellars 2015 The Queen Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley $26 87 points
This wine comes off as quite green, with notes of assorted garden herbs, freshly cut bell pepper and moist soil. The black-fruit flavors are plush in feel, showing concentration and richness and a pleasing feel. If you can get around the overt greenness—and there’s plenty of it—there are things to enjoy.

Eight Bells 2014 Red Willow Vineyard Sangiovese Yakima Valley $25 89 points
The aromas of cherry, herb and raspberry are light but show a pleasing sense of purity. The palate is tart and elegant, with the oak dialed way back and the bright acidity pulling together the finish. Pair it with food to see it at its best.

Eight Bells 2016 Boushey Vineyard Chardonnay Yakima Valley $25 89 points
Very alluring yellow apple and Bosc pear aromas are followed by an elegantly styled palate, with racy lemony acids on the finish. It shows a pleasing sense of purity and elegance. Pair it with food to see it at its best.

Eight Bells 2013 Red Willow Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Yakima Valley $35 88 points
High-toned aromas of herb, flower, spice and cherry are followed by tart elegantly styled fruit flavors. The new oak influence seems minimal. Pair it with food to see it at its best.

Eight Bells 2013 David’s Block Red Willow Vineyard Red Blend Yakima Valley $35 88 points
This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Carménère, Merlot and Petit Verdot, coming from a block designed by the late Master of Wine David Lake. Light aromas of herb, green pepper and cherry are followed by elegant fruit flavors that seem a bit faint. The oak appears to be dialed way back. Best paired with food.

Eight Bells 2014 Eight Clones Red Willow Vineyard Syrah Yakima Valley $35 92 points
The aromas draw you into the glass, with complex notes of smoked meat, plum, herb, flowers, orange peel and cinnamon. The mouthfeel is swoon-worthy, showing a compelling sense of intensity and balance. The sense of purity is knee buckling.

Fidelitas 2014 Malbec Red Mountain $40 89 points
A blend of Scooteney Flats and Kiona vineyards, this 100% varietal wine initially brings barrel-forward aromas of vanillin, clove and spice. This evolves over time to reveal dark plum and pepper. The fruit flavors are fleshy yet still show restraint. If the barrel notes integrate, it could move up a notch.

Fidelitas 2014 Blackwood Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $60 88 points
Being 100% varietal, aromas of barrel spice are prominent at present, followed by black fruit. The fruit flavors are sweet but still lighter in style, with lightly grainy tannins backing them up. It’s surprisingly restrained considering the warmth of the vintage and region.

Fidelitas 2014 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Merlot Red Mountain $50 89 points
Barrel aromas are out front on this 100% varietal wine, with notes of wood spice, vanilla, pencil lead and baking spice followed by dark plum. The flavors are dense, dark and palate coating. The wood shows quite prominently on the palate as well but if you can get beyond it, there are good things happening.

Fidelitas 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $50 89 points
This wine is a blend of fruit from Quintessence, Red Heaven, Fidelitas Estate and Shaw vineyards. The aromas are wound up tightly at present but with coaxing reveal notes of French oak spices, black cherry and black currant. The flavors show a surprising amount of restraint, with a pleasing cranberry tartness and a lick of tannins.

Fidelitas 2014 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $65 89 points
Coming from one of the state’s premier vineyards, barrel-spice aromas are at the fore on first pour, with black-fruit and herb notes far in the background. The dark-fruit flavors are concentrated initially, tapering slightly toward the finish.

Fidelitas 2014 Quintessence Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $60 89 points
This wine is 100% varietal. The aromas are locked up at present, with notes of luxurious French oak treatment and cherry. The flavors are dense and concentrated, but the tannins show a fair amount of grip, providing some distraction. There are good things going on but the oak is intense at present.

Fidelitas 2014 Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills $65 88 points
This wine is 100% varietal coming from one of the top vineyards in the state. Reserved aromas of spice box, blackberry, barrel tones and gun smoke lead to elegantly styled fruit flavors. There are some interesting thing going on but they don’t all come together at present.

Fidelitas 2014 Fidelitas Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $75 89 points
Herb, anise, baking-spice, smoke and dark-fruit aromas are followed by medium-bodied fruit flavors surrounded by velvety tannins. The balance is just about spot on.

Flying Trout 2015 Deep River Red Blend Columbia Valley $29 91 points
Two-thirds of this wine is Malbec and one-third is Merlot. Aromas of asphalt, plum and orange rind lead to a palate that possesses a lovely sense of balance and length.

Flying Trout 2015 Cutthroat Red Blend Columbia Valley $32 92 points
Malbec makes up just under two-thirds of this wine, with the balance Syrah. Quite pure fruit-forward aromas of blue fruit, herb and clove lead to a sweet plush rich palate that shows good midpalate density. The finish lingers.

Hightower 2013 Merlot Red Mountain $30 87 points
The plum, herb and spice aromas are followed by ever so slightly dried-out-seeming cherry flavors. There’s enjoyment to be had, but it seems slightly more evolved than its age indicates.

Hightower 2013 Pepper Bridge Vineyard Merlot Walla Walla Valley $30 88 points
This is an intriguing wine, with the extraction and the alcohol seemingly dialed back. Somewhat light in color, it brings aromas of fresh herb, sweet spice, cedar and cherry. The flavors are elegant and cranberry tart. It doesn’t come off as entirely varietal but there’s plenty of enjoyment to be had, especially if paired with food.

Hightower 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain $36 87 points
The aromas come off as quite green, with notes of bell pepper and garden herbs more reminiscent of a Cabernet Franc. The flavors are elegant and show more of the same. It’s an exploration of Cabernet’s greener side, surprising considering the warmer vintage and region.

Hogue 2016 Sauvignon Blanc Columbia Valley $8 85 points
Faint melon and tropical-fruit aromas are followed by lightly concentrated dry flavors, with kiwi notes on the finish. It comes off a bit as a generic white wine, with the variety hard to find but still delivers enjoyment. Best Buy

Hogue 2015 Late Harvest Riesling Columbia Valley $8 86 points
Stone-fruit aromas of nectarine and ripe peach drizzled with honey are followed by medium-plus sweet fruit flavors. It’s a straight-forward easy drinker. Best Buy

Hogue 2015 Pinot Grigio Columbia Valley $8 85 points
The aromas are barely a whisper, with notes of citrus and herb. It drinks dry with lightly concentrated fruit flavors. The variety seems hard to find. Best Buy

Hogue 2015 Gewürztraminer Columbia Valley $8 86 points
Vibrant aromas of lychee, white flowers and spice lead to elegant off-dry flavors. It brings easy-drinking enjoyment but the concentration seems a bit lacking. Best Buy

Hogue 2014 Terroir Lonesome Spring Vineyard G-S-M Yakima Valley $25 87 points
This wine is 40% Syrah, 39% Mourvèdre and 21% Grenache. Aromas of baking spice, herb, vanilla and blue and red fruit are followed by tart cranberry and cherry flavors. It delivers enjoyment.

Hogue 2014 Merlot Columbia Valley $8 85 points
The plum, herb and spice aromas are elusive. The cherry flavors are light but come straight down the fairway. One wants more concentration, but it delivers easy-drinking pleasure. Best Buy 
Hogue 2014 Red Blend Columbia Valley $8 88 points
Light aromas of ash, herb, berry, vanilla and cherry lead to sweet plush cranberry and cherry flavors that linger along with baking spice notes on the finish. It brings a lot of enjoyment for the price. Best Buy

Hogue 2013 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $30 85 points
Boysenberry, clove and wood spice aromas lead to tart, lightly styled fruit flavors that winnow toward the finish. The reserve designation seems hard to find.

Hogue 2015 Terroir Fries Vineyard Viognier Wahluke Slope $18 86 points
Aromas of mandarin orange, peach and herb are followed by lightly styled, off-dry drinking but still well-balanced fruit flavors. It goes down easy.

Hogue 2015 Chardonnay Columbia Valley $8 85 points
Light aromas of apple and pear are followed by lightly concentrated fruit flavors. It’s enjoyable but seems a bit faint. Best Buy

Hogue 2013 Terroir Syrah Snipes Mountain $25 86 points
Cherry, raspberry compote, anise, vanilla, wood spice and medicine-cabinet aromas are followed by lighter styled fruit and savory flavors, with the tannins bringing some grip.

Hogue 2015 Riesling Columbia Valley $8 86 points
Jasmine, herb, flower, dried Nestea Ice Tea and peach aromas are followed by medium-sweet fruit flavors that linger. It’s a pleasant easy drinker, if a bit faint. Best Buy 
Hogue 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $8 84 points
Aromas of black currant, dark chocolate and herb are followed by lightly concentrated dark-fruit flavors. The tannins bring a sense of astringency. Best Buy 
Hogue 2014 Reserve Chardonnay Columbia Valley $25 85 points
The aromas are almost completely shut down, with light notes of corn on the cob and peach. The flavors are lightly concentrated, making it a strain to hear what they have to say.

Hogue 2014 Genesis Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $12 85 points
Reticent aromas of dried blue fruit and spice lead to full-feeling fruit flavors. The tannins bring some astringency.

Hogue 2013 Reserve Merlot Columbia Valley $30 85 points
The aromas seem quite dried out, with notes of blackberry bramble and fruit leather. The flavors also seem considerably more evolved than its age. It’s a big miss.

Hogue 2013 Genesis Merlot Columbia Valley $12 86 points
Light in color, this wine offers aromas of herb, red currant, graphite, raspberry and barrel spice. The fruit and barrel flavors are elegantly styled, playing off each other through the finish.

Hogue 2014 Genesis Meritage Columbia Valley $12 83 points
Malbec makes up just under half of this wine, with the balance Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Merlot. Despite its young age, it seems quite evolved with aromas and flavors of raisins and dried cherry.

Julia's Dazzle 2016 Benches Vineyard Rosé Horse Heaven Hills $20 88 points
This pale peach-colored wine brings vibrant aromas of strawberry and cherry. It’s lightly spritzy, drinking almost completely dry with weighty feeling fruit flavors.

Kerloo 2015 No Joke Stone Tree Vineyard Red Blend Wahluke Slope $40 91 points
This wine is 71% Malbec and 29% Cabernet Sauvignon. High-toned aromas of dried herb, cherry, tobacco, plum and barrel spice lead to pillowy soft, dazzlingly textured, mouthwatering fruit flavors. It’s a big-time winner. Editor's Choice

Kerloo 2016 Painted Hills Vineyard Grenache Rosé Columbia Valley $22 88 points
This wine is a pretty very pale peach, almost bronze color. Light strawberry aromas are followed by bone-dry textured fruit flavors. Pink grapefruit lingers on the finish. Pair it with food to see it at its best.

Kerloo 2015 Blue Mountain Vineyard Syrah Walla Walla Valley $20 90 points
This wine is expressive, with aromas of violet, herb and purple fruit. The palate is lighter styled and tart, delivering a bit more tannic heft than this variety often shows. Give it some time to open up.

Kevin White 2014 DuBrul Vineyard Red Blend Yakima Valley $35 92 pointsThis wine is 53% Merlot and 47% Cabernet Sauvignon. Pleasing aromas of spices, herb, moist earth, cedar and cherry lead to a dazzling mouthful of cherry and strawberry flavors that show distinctive purity. It’s a heart-stopper and an outrageous value. Editor's Choice

Kevin White 2015 Red Blend Yakima Valley $18 92 points
A blend of 44% Syrah, 31% Grenache and 25 Mourvèdre, this wine is aromatically very pure, with plenty of red and blue fruit, speckled with bay leaf, herb and black-pepper accents. It possesses a thrilling plush mouthfeel, with olive and black-fruit flavors, showing a fine sense of purity. Editor's Choice

L'Ecole No. 41 2014 Estate Grown Seven Hills Vineyard Syrah Walla Walla Valley $37 90 points
The aromas are near completely closed up on first pour, with whiffs of marionberry, herb and barrel spice. The palate brings dense tightly wound fruit flavors. It needs some time to stretch its legs but there are plenty of good things going on once they come to the surface.

L'Ecole No. 41 2014 Merlot Columbia Valley $22 88 points
The aromas are barrel-forward at present, with notes of baking spice and vanilla in front of red fruit. The flavors are plump in feel but also come off as quite woody. There are lots of good things going on. Perhaps some additional time in the bottle will pull them all together.

L'Ecole No. 41 2014 Syrah Columbia Valley $25 89 points
Blended with 20% Grenache, this wine displays somewhat reticent aromas of cranberry, baking spice, raspberry and plum. The cherry flavors are rich with the tannins initially showing a touch of astringency that softens over time.

L'Ecole No. 41 2014 Apogee Pepper Bridge Vineyard Walla Walla Valley $55 90 points
Cabernet Sauvignon makes up half of this wine, with the balance Merlot (31%), Malbec (15%) and Cabernet Franc. Barrel notes of vanilla and baking spice are up front, followed by herb and dark fruit tones that are backed by lively acidity. It currently drinks very tight. Give it some time in the cellar or an extended decant. Best after 2020.

Liberty Lake 2016 Tahija Dry Riesling Columbia Valley $14 87 points
Aromas of pear, citrus peel and fresh flower lead to a dry broad feeling palate. It shows warmth on the finish.

Love That Red 2016 Love That Rosé Columbia Valley $18 86 points
A pale peach color, this wine offers aromas of strawberry, watermelon and cherry. The flavors are on the lighter side of medium bodied, with tart notes on the finish.

March 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon-Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley $32 86 points
The alcohol shows strongly on the aromas, along with dried-out fruit. The dark-fruit and herb flavors are light and elegant, with gritty tannins backing them up.

Maryhill 2014 Proprietor’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $43 87 points
As a 100% varietal wine, blue fruit, vanilla and herb aromas are followed by abundant cherry flavors, with lightly dry tannins backing them up. The oak plays a prominent role.

Maryhill 2014 Painted Hills Vineyard Dolcetto Columbia Valley $36 86 points
Dolcetto remains an extreme rarity in the state. This one brings aromas of black currant, vanilla, licorice and wood spice that are followed by dried-out-seeming fruit flavors along with lightly dry tannins. The oak seems prominent and the variety hard to find at times.

Maryhill 2015 Proprietor’s Reserve Tudor Hills Vineyard Chardonnay Columbia Valley $25 88 points
Aromas of barrel toast, kiwi and pineapple lead to a sweet, slightly lean, tropical-fruit-filled palate that delivers a lot of easy-drinking pleasure.

Maryhill 2016 Rosé of Sangiovese Columbia Valley $18 86 points
This pale pink colored wine offers appealing aromas of watermelon Jolly Rancher and cherry. It drinks off dry with mouthwatering cherry flavors.

Maryhill 2016 Proprietor’s Reserve Otis Vineyard Albariño Columbia Valley $19 85 points
Light aromas of flower, apple, melon and pear lead to dry stone-fruit flavors. It’s a pleasant if somewhat innocuous easy drinker.

Mercer 2014 Reserve Spice Cabinet Vineyard Syrah Horse Heaven Hills $42 87 points
Barrel notes of vanilla, baking spice and dill are at the fore, with dark fruit lurking in the background. The palate brings lingering creamy-feeling fruit and barrel flavors. It provides appeal but the oak seems too forward.

Mercer 2014 Merlot Horse Heaven Hills $19 88 points
Pleasing aromas of herb, cherry, vanilla, and cocoa are followed by soft subtle cherry flavors. Lightly grainy tannins provide support. It doesn’t seem entirely varietal but still provides enjoyment.

Mercer 2014 Malbec Horse Heaven Hills $19 88 points
Light aromas of herb, plum, vanilla, cocoa and dark fruit lead to a palate that is simultaneously sweet and tart, with a plush midpalate. It provides intrigue.

Mercer 2014 Reserve Ode to Brothers Horse Heaven Hills $40 87 points
Syrah makes up 39% of this wine, with the balance Mourvèdre (36%) and Grenache. Vanilla, dill and coconut aromas are followed by elegant dark-fruit flavors. The tannins bring some grit. There are some good things going on, but the oak is overwhelming.

Mercer 2014 Robert Willis Reserve Spice Cabinet Vineyard Malbec Horse Heaven Hills $55 88 points
High-toned aromas of herb, pencil lead, vanilla and plum are followed by plush plump fruit and game flavors. It possesses a soft texture.

Mercer Canyons 2014 Red Blend Horse Heaven Hills $14 85 points
This wine is mostly Merlot (59%), with the balance a mix of five other varieties. Aromas of herb, baking spice, cherry and blue fruit are followed by quite sweet fruit flavors. It delivers easy-drinking appeal.

Mercer Canyons 2014 Malbec Horse Heaven Hills $14 86 points
Aromas of baking spice, herb, vanilla, wood spice and cherry lead to lightly sweet fruit flavors. The oak is overwhelming, making the variety hard to find.

Murray 2016 Rosé Red Mountain $18 86 points
Hot pink in color, this wine offers aromas of bubblegum and cherry. It drinks dry with a stretched-out finish.

Murray 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $25 86 points
This aromatic brooder brings notes of Fruit Roll-Ups, raisins, black licorice and wood spice—seemingly a bit dried out. The fruit on the palate is sweet, also seeming a bit more evolved than its age would indicate. Drink now.

Pepper Bridge 2013 Pepper Bridge Vineyard Walla Walla Valley $60 91 points
This wine is half Merlot, with the rest equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Brooding aromas of black licorice, barrel spice and dark fruit lead to plentiful fruit and barrel flavors that show a lovely sense of balance. The tannins bring some grip.

Pepper Bridge 2013 Trine Estate Vineyards Walla Walla Valley $65 91 points
Cabernet Sauvignon (37%) and Cabernet Franc (34%) make up the majority of this wine, with the balance Merlot (16%), Malbec (8%) and Petit Verdot. The aromas are quite locked up, with light notes of barrel spice, herb and assorted dark fruit. The palate has light tightly coiled fruit flavors. It needs time to reveal its charms. Best after 2021.

Pepper Bridge 2014 Estate Vineyards Merlot Walla Walla Valley $50 89 points
Dark raspberry, barrel spice and smoke aromas are followed by medium-bodied fruit flavors. The tannins bring a slight sense of astringency. Perhaps some time in the bottle will help them settle.

Pepper Bridge 2014 Seven Hills Vineyard Estate Vineyards Walla Walla Valley $60 91 points
This wine is 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Cabernet Franc, 20% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot. The aromas are almost completely shut down at present, with just hints of barrel spice, herb and dark fruit. The fruit flavors are similarly locked up, backed by lightly grainy tannins. There are good things going on but it needs time to reveal itself. Best after 2022.

Pepper Bridge 2013 Estate Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley $60 89 points
High-toned aromas of black fruit, barrel spice and herb lead to a wound up palate backed by lightly grainy tannins. It’s almost four years old, but still seems to need time to settle in. Best after 2020.

Random Wine 2013 Destiny Ridge Vineyard Syrah Columbia Valley $29 86 points
The aromas are somewhat underripe, with notes of herb, thistle and medicine cabinet. The cranberry and cherry flavors seem more dried out than its age would indicate.

Ross Andrew 2015 The Huntsman Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $15 86 points
Black-currant, dark-plum and herb aromas are in the lead. The flavors are on the lighter side, with the oak seeming quite dialed back.

Saviah 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley $30 88 points
This wine is a blend of fruit from Anna Marie, Dugger Creek, McClellan Estate and Seven Hills vineyards. The aromas are light, with notes of barrel spice, graphite, herb and dark fruit. The flavors are elegant in style, possessing a pleasing texture that heightens the interest.

Saviah 2015 The Jack Syrah Columbia Valley $18 90 points
Aromas of blue fruit, green herb, funk and savory notes lead to sweet, luscious blue-fruit and smoked-meat flavors that linger effortlessly on the finish. The sense of balance and length are rare for a wine at this price. Editor's Choice

Saviah 2014 Syrah Walla Walla Valley $32 93 points
A blend of fruit from Watermill, Funk, Lewis and Anna Marie vineyards, the aromas bring vibrant notes of flowers, ham hock, berry, tapenade, herb and ember. The palate is plush yet elegant and silky in feel, showing an exquisite mix of fruit and savory flavors along with outrageous hang time on the finish. It shows a lot of subtlety.

Saviah 2015 The Jack Red Blend Columbia Valley $18 89 points
Merlot makes up just over three-quarters of this blend, with the balance Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese and Petit Verdot. Bright aromas of cherry pie, blueberry, herb, plum and earth are followed by smooth polished blue-fruit flavors. It’s a complete delight, focusing on elegance.

Saviah 2014 The Funk Estate Syrah Walla Walla Valley $60 94 points
This standout Rocks District wine brings earth shaking aromas of black-olive brine, tapenade, green olive, stargazer lilies, orange peel and crushed gravel. The smoked meat, charcuterie and blue-fruit flavors don’t hold back, bringing a lovely sense of texture and detail. It’s an intense wine that completely demands your attention.

Saviah 2013 Hunt and Gather Red Blend Walla Walla Valley $55 89 points
This wine is half Funk Estate Vineyard Syrah, with the rest McClellan Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. The two varieties somewhat seem to cancel each other out initially, with aromas of smoked meat, cherry, herb and earth that don’t seem fully resolved. The palate brings a smooth, elegant styling to the red and blue-fruit flavors. There’s plenty of interest, but it doesn’t all entirely come together at present.

Tamarack Cellars 2014 Spicebox Columbia Valley $28 88 points
Grenache (52%) takes the lead on this wine followed by Mourvèdre (31%) and Counoise. Light in color, it displays aromas of strawberry, coriander, herb and baking spice. The palate brings plentiful cranberry flavors that possess a lightly creamy feel.

Tertulia 2012 Phinny Hill Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills $45 87 points
Brooding aromas of spice box, herb, purple fruit and wood spice are followed by medium-bodied cranberry flavors. The tannins bring a sense of astringency, requiring some time in the cellar to (hopefully?) soften.

Tertulia 2016 Elevation Estate Vineyard Marsanne Walla Walla Valley $20 87 points
Aged in stainless steel, this wine comes from a new wine-growing region in the cataracts of the North fork of the Walla Walla River. The aromas are quite faint initially. The palate is on the lighter side of medium bodied, with tart flavors. It lacks a sense of clear direction.

Tertulia 2016 Whistling Hills Estate Vineyard Viognier Walla Walla Valley $22 88 points
Blended with 25% Roussanne and fermented and aged in French oak, the aromas are light but intriguing, with slightly reduced notes of peach, cream, flowers and spice. The poached pear and stone-fruit flavors are delicate but accented by tart focused acidity that keeps the interest up.

Tertulia 2016 Estate Tempranillo Rosé Walla Walla Valley $22 88 points
Rosés are an extreme rarity from this appellation, let alone 100% varietal Tempranillo. Pale peach in color, aromas of strawberry hard candy, bubblegum and spice lead to dry well-measured fruit flavors. It delivers enjoyment.

Trust 2014 Syrah Walla Walla Valley $32 92 points
Blue fruit, raspberry, violet, dark chocolate, green olive and spice aromas lead to ripe fruit and herb flavors that mix in plenty of smoked-meat notes, heightened a dazzling feel. A lengthy finish caps it off. It’s an intriguing wine that keeps you coming back for more. Editor's Choice

Trust 2014 Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley $34 87 points
The aromas seem quite dried out, with notes of fruit leather, medicine cabinet and green herbs. The palate brings more of the same, seeming more advanced than its age might indicate.

Trust 2013 A Stone’s Throw Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $48 88 points
The cherry cola, herb, menthol and barrel-spice aromas seem a bit more evolved than their age might indicate. The palate is on the lighter side of medium bodied, with plump tannins providing support.

Underground Wine Project 2016 And Why am I Mr. Pink? Rosé of Sangiovese Columbia Valley $12 88 points
A very appealing pale peach color, this wine brings aromas of strawberry and cherry. The flavors are tart and decisive, with a lingering finish. Best Buy

Vital 2015 The Gifted Red Blend Walla Walla Valley $25 88 points
The aromas are light, with notes of cranberry, blueberry and wood spice. The palate brings plush but tart cranberry flavors that linger on the finish.

Vital 2016 Rosé Wine Sangiovese Walla Walla Valley $18 85 points
There’s just a trace of color on this wine. Light aromas of citrus and herb are followed by dry-fruit flavors. The concentration seems quite dilute.

Waterbrook 2015 Sauvignon Blanc Columbia Valley $13 84 points
The aromas are light, with notes of herb, banana and underripe pineapple. The palate falls flat, drinking more like a generic white wine, with the concentration lacking.

Waterbrook 2015 Reserve Chardonnay Columbia Valley $18 86 points
Aromas of vanilla, coconut and wood spice lead to wood-filled flavors. The barrel notes are in complete control.

Waterbrook 2015 Melange Founder’s White Blend White Blend Columbia Valley $13 85 points
Vibrant aromas of pineapple, flowers, peach and lychee lead to an palate that leans sweeter than off dry. Stone-fruit flavors linger on the finish.

Waters 2016 Patina Vineyard Rosé Walla Walla Valley $22 92 points
This rare single-vineyard rosé is all Syrah. Pale peach in color, it brings aromas of blood orange and strawberry that are followed by a textured lively palate with an extended finish. It’s one of the best rosés the state has produced to date. Editor's Choice

Waters 2013 Interlude Washington $28 89 points
Merlot makes up just over half of this wine, with Cabernet Sauvignon (39%) playing second fiddle and Cabernet Franc and Malbec rounding it out. It’s expressive, with aromas of fig, golden raisins, eucalyptus and red fruit, with the aromas seeming slightly dried out. The palate is fruit forward and textured, while still showing restraint and length.

Waters 2014 Stone Tree Malbec Wahluke Slope $32 93 points
This wine offers aromas of herb, tobacco, barrel spice and plum. The palate brings plush rich textured plum flavors, showing a beautiful sense of purity along with a crazy-long finish. It’s a shamelessly delicious but still impeccably balanced wine that is nearly impossible to put down. Editor's Choice

Waters 2014 Old Stones Syrah Walla Walla Valley $50 94 points
The aromas pop, with notes of orange peel, ember, cured meat, black olive and wet stone, with purple fruit lurking in the background. The palate is surprisingly fruit forward, with plum and savory flavors that coat the palate from end to end. The finish glides for a full 30 seconds. Editor's Choice

William Church 2014 Gamache Vineyards Malbec Columbia Valley $40 88 points
This 100% varietal wine comes from older plantings at this vineyard. Aromas of plum, barrel spice and herb are up front followed by sweet black-fruit flavors. It shows hang time on the finish.

William Church 2014 Cabernet Franc Columbia Valley $36 88 points
The plum, fresh herb, cherry and spice aromas of this 100% varietal offering are alluring but restrained. The flavors are sweet, plump and fresh, showing a sense of elegance, with a stretched-out finish.

William Church 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $45 88 points
Aromas of blackberry, herb, black cherry and spice box are followed by medium-bodied black-cherry flavors. Lightly grainy tannins provide support.

William Marie 2015 Windmill Firethorn Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley $29 87 points
High-toned aromas of barrel spice, green pepper, cherry and herb lead to plump cherry flavors. It delivers enjoyment but seems a bit generic.

| edit post

0 comments

Post a Comment

Follow

TN Database


Tasting Note Database Read an explanation of the fields here. FINAL UPDATE 6/13/2015.

Blog Archive