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 Vintage2002 Label 1 of 76 
ProducerLeonetti Cellar (web)
VarietyRed Bordeaux Blend
SubRegionColumbia Valley
AppellationWalla Walla Valley
OptionsShow variety and appellation

Drinking Windows and Values
Drinking window: Drink between 2007 and 2015 (based on 11 user opinions)
Wine Market Journal quarterly auction price: See Leonetti Cellar Red Reserve on the Wine Market Journal.

Community Tasting History

Community Tasting Notes (average 92.8 pts. and median of 93 pts. in 24 notes) - hiding notes with no text

 Tasted by Wine12345 on 7/10/2014 & rated 94 points: Great wine just hitting its stride at 12 years. Opened 4 hours before drinking; helped greatly. (1611 views)
 Tasted by devman on 2/27/2014 & rated 96 points: Probably the best Leonetti wine I have ever had. Beautifully structured, fantastically balanced, and incredibly food friendly. The oak is prominent on the nose, but on the palate it takes a backseat to the fantastic dark fruits, leather, acidity and tannin. It's still quite youthful and only got better with time in the decanter. Amazing wine. (1966 views)
 Tasted by Tom Myers on 2/14/2014 & rated 92 points: Excellent but not as good as I expected for an aged reserve wine from this esteemed winery (1897 views)
 Tasted by f22nickell on 11/11/2013 & rated 92 points: Same as my last review, but this bottle was a bit closed off. Perhaps it was the Pop n Pour. Still, this was the only bottle at the table that was empty at the end of the night. Love this wine! If I could afford to, Leonetti would be my consistent "go to" daily drinker. (2169 views)
 Tasted by DrEdwardo on 10/19/2013 & rated 92 points: Decanted 1 hour. Dark colour. Powerful cassis nose. Well integrated sweet tannins provide a silky smooth entry into cassis, tar & cedar landing with a very subtle hint of dill. Still youthful, it has many years ahead of it (2215 views)
 Tasted by f22nickell on 9/11/2013 & rated 94 points: Seattle Wine Group - Sep 2013 Tasting - Theme: Aged WA Bordeaux Blends (Amaroso Room - Wine Storage Bellevue): Setting: Bottle “H” in the blind tasting. Notes were taken before I knew the wine identity.

Sight: This wine is cloudy, with some evidence of gas, but no particles. Color is medium ruby all the way to the edge. Medium concentration of color. Legs are medium width and move quickly down the glass.

Nose: This wine does not smell flawed. Strong intensity. Aromas are of tart blue fruit, primarily blueberries but some blackberry as well. This wine has secondary notes of mint and eucalyptus. I do detect some use of oak, but it is perfectly integrated and very complementary. No alcohol detected on the nose.

Palate: This wine is lush, medium bodied. The palate has flavors of blueberries, blackberries, coffee, and vanilla. The blueberry flavors scream Leonetti. The fruit is laser focused, but not overbearing. The fruit, wood, and secondary notes are in perfect harmony. Mouthfeel is very silky smooth, lush. Just a hint of heat.

Structure: This wine is dry. Acid is medium. Alcohol is medium. Tannins are medium and perfectly integrated. Finish is very long. Complexity is high. This wine is integrated very well on every level.

Conclusion: This wine has to be my offering, the 2002 Leonetti Reserve, Walla Walla Valley. Leonetti’s tell tale blueberry notes are immediately recognizable. High quality producer.

Final Conclusion: This is wine is very well made. This wine is perfectly integrated and balanced. The primary and secondary flavors, in conjunction with the acid, alcohol, and tannins, are all in harmony and support each other. Very complex, the incredibly long finish keeps evolving. My favorite of the lineup.

My Ranking: 1st out of 8 bottles
Group Ranking: 1st (tie) out of 8 bottles. (1743 views)
 Tasted by michaelgor on 9/4/2012 & rated 94 points: decanted one hour..Riedel Vinum Cab glass....good deep red color..a hint of brown around the meniscus...nose of dark stone fruit, bing cherry, some vanilla..some dark chocolate (? merlot), some eucalyptus. a wonderfully silky mouth feel, well integrated fruit/tannin, a full mid palate and finish..though a little hot on the finish..this was a surprisingly delicious wine in its prime..would not hold much longer as I fear it will begin to fade...my wife, who does not normally enjoy Washington State wines was amazed (2047 views)
 Tasted by baileycs on 8/24/2012 & rated 91 points: Decanted about an hour, had at Daniels in Lake Union. Deep red, super nose, very integrated with med/long finish. Was very good, but in the drink me now stage (1810 views)
 Tasted by dream on 5/17/2012 & rated 88 points: Thick black ruby color. Ultra-ripe cab nose of cassis, blackberries, bitter chocolate and eucalyptus. A thick, richly textured wine with flavors that echo the nose especially the ripe cassis and bitter chocolate. Lavished with new oak and there is good underlying acidity and firm tannins but I would have a hard time distinguishing this from a typical overripe Napa cab at least at this point. Finishes ripe and throaty with lots of alcohol. An opulent, sexy, mouth-coating wine that should've just been picked a few weeks sooner. (1767 views)
 Tasted by dross811 on 11/13/2011 & rated 96 points: Exceptionally good wine that had aged nicely. (2521 views)
 Tasted by FatBeagle on 5/14/2010 & rated 94 points: Lithe, elegant and sensual in its attack, it transformed over the course of 4+ hours, displaying stunning complexity and a range of flavors. (3224 views)
 Tasted by FatBeagle on 12/23/2009 & rated 93 points: Drinking beautifully right now (2863 views)
 Tasted by RPerro on 11/26/2009 & rated 93 points: Thanksgiving Dinner (Dietra's House, Portland OR): While I have had some so-so wines from Leonetti this year, the Walla Walla Reserve has been a consistent hit. Even from the tough, overly hot 2002 vintage, this wine is drinking at absolute peak right now. Everything is integrated perfectly, and the fruit is lush and mouth-coating. Big blackberry and vanilla flavors. So delicious...No decant on this one, just a pop-n-pour before Thanksgiving dinner. It was an instant hit with all present, and was the first bottle to be finished. At $90/bottle, not a very good QPR, but for a special occasion wine it worked nicely. Sad it was my last, but glad I was able to share it with friends. (3275 views)
 Tasted by RPerro on 11/14/2009 & rated 91 points: Huge nose of cherry, raspberry and asphalt, with a bit of oak, all following to the palate. First taste just blew me away...as it integrated and smoothed out, the oak disappeared, and the lush fruit showed more abundance. A great wine that is probably at or very near peak. (2707 views)
 Tasted by last chance on 4/10/2009 & rated 90 points: This wine had a great nose. Aromas of cherry, blackberry and tar. After smelling this wine, I thought I was going to love it. The palate was not what the nose promised though. Flavors of tart cherry, plum, and some earth with a lighter mouthfeel than I expected. Where was the tar that was on the nose? Medium bodied with a medium length finish. Hopefully this will flesh out with some more time, but I've only tasted one Leonetti older than 2001, so I don't know. (3043 views)
 Tasted by Phin on 12/19/2008 & rated 94 points: 3 hour decant. Tangy red and blue fruit with full body. Great balance but really big with zing. (3001 views)
 Tasted by ewsds on 1/9/2008 & rated 94 points: Wow. It took a while to show itself, but once it got an hour or so of air, it was delightful. Thick mouth-coating fruit, real depth and length. A beautiful nose of pure rich and sweet fruit, and it get s smoother the more you drink. Not quite at the level of the 2003 Reserve, but you won't be disappointed at all, if you give it time. Drink it now or hold it for a year or two, but either way, give it some air and take your time. A real treat! (3740 views)
 Tasted by luko on 10/28/2005: Wow, this wine is gonna make some people happy. I wanted to try this wine in its youth after remembering what a thrill it was to try the 98 reserve at 3yrs old. Initially, it didnt yield much on the nose, but had a thick mouth coating texture with notes of cedar and earth. However, after about 1.5 hours open in the bottle....everything was gangbusters. Full throttle on both the nose and palate, pure cassis fruit, sweet vanilla oak, chewy tannins, completely exploding in the mouth. Its so good now, I'm tempted to open more in the near term, although there is no rush..... (4355 views)

Professional 'Channels'
By Stephen Tanzer
Vinous, November/December 2005, IWC Issue #123
(Leonetti Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Walla Walla Valley) Subscribe to see review text.
NOTE: Scores and reviews are the property of Vinous. (manage subscription channels)

CellarTracker Wiki Articles (login to edit | view all articles)

Leonetti Cellar

Producer website

For more than 30 years, the Figgins Family has been producing wines of consistently high quality at Leonetti Cellar, which was bonded in 1977 by Founders Gary and Nancy Figgins. What started as Gary’s vision to make world-class wines in Walla Walla has turned out to be a true American success story. Today, Leonetti Cellar produces some of the most sought after wines in the world.

Red Bordeaux Blend

Read about the grapes used to produce Bordeaux The variety Red Bordeaux Blend in CellarTracker implies any blend using any or all of the five traditional Bordeaux varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. As such, this is used worldwide, whether for wines from Bordeaux, Meritages from California and Canada, some Super-Tuscan wines etc.


The Wine News | Wine Country This Week | Wine Lover's Page


WineAmerica (National Association of American Wineries) | Free the Grapes!


Washington Wine Commission | Credit to Washingtonwine.org for this article

Washington Wine
Washington State is a premium wine producing region located in the northwest corner of the United States. Although a relatively young wine industry, it is now the nation's second largest wine producer and is ranked among the world's top wine regions. Washington wines are found nationally in all 50 states and internationally in more than 40 countries.

With 30,000+ acres planted, the state has ideal geography and conditions for growing premium vinifera wine grapes. Primarily grown on their own root stocks, the vines produce grapes of consistent quality, resulting in strong vintages year after year. While its focus is on Chardonnay, Riesling, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, the region also produces a wide range of other spectacular whites and reds.

Winemakers from all over the world have chosen to establish themselves in Washington, where they can create wines reflecting this region's unique characteristics. Their hand-crafted wines are receiving wide acclaim from critics regionally, nationally and internationally for their consistently high quality. Many of them have received scores of 90 and above from the major wine media. Overall this is a higher percentage than other leading wine regions.

As the state's fourth largest fruit crop, the Washington wine industry is an important contributor to the long-term preservation of Washington agriculture. The industry is committed to sustainable agricultural practices and conservation of water resources.
Washington State is a premium wine producing region located in the northwest corner of the United States. Although a relatively young wine industry, it is now the nation's second largest wine producer and is ranked among the world's top wine regions. Washington wines are found nationally in all 50 states and internationally in more than 40 countries.

Washington produces more than 20 wine grape varieties - a ratio of 56 percent white to 44 percent red. As the industry matures and experiments, it finds many grape varieties that thrive throughout Washington's microclimates. There are more than 16,000 vineyard acres of red wine varieties statewide.

History & Vintages
Washington's wine future is limitless. As consumers discover the quality of Washington wines, demand continues to grow nationally and internationally. New acreage and wine varietals are being planted and new wineries are opening at a remarkable pace. Washington State is recognized as a premium viticultural region around the world.

State Facts
Washington's wine industry generates more than $3 billion to the state economy. It employs more than 14,000 people, directly and indirectly, with projections to add nearly 2,000 more jobs by 2006. In terms of tax revenues accrued to the state and federal government, wine grapes are among the highest tax generators of any agricultural crops. Furthermore, Washington wine tourism attracts nearly two million visitors annually contributing to the positive growth of local and regional economies.

Washington State - the perfect climate for wine = ideal growing conditions, quality wines, business innovation, lifestyle, and social responsibility. All are key elements of this world-class wine industry.

Columbia Valley

Columbia Cascade Winery Association

The Columbia Valley AVA lies mostly in Washington state, with a small section in Oregon. The Cascade Range forms its western boundary with the Palouse regions bordering the area to the east. To the north, the Okanogan National Forest forms a border with the AVA and Canada. It encompasses the valleys formed by the Columbia River and its tributaries, including the Walla Walla River, the Snake River, and the Yakima River. The Columbia valley stretches between the 46th parallel and 47th parallel which puts it in line with the well known French wine growing regions of Bordeaux and Burgundy. The northern latitude gives the areas two more hours of additional daylight during the summer growing season than wine regions of California receive. The volcanic and sandy loam soil of the valley offers good drainage and is poor in nutrients, ideal in forcing the vine to concentrate its resources into the grape clusters.

Walla Walla Valley

The name translates as easily as it rolls off the tongue: Walla Walla. Many Waters. To the earliest Native tribes, the many waters came from the nearby Blue Mountains and gathered to form the Walla Walla River on its way to join the Columbia to the west. The waters flowed first; however, into a fair-sized Valley carved in the mountain's foothills, and bordered in part by the terrain of what is known as the Columbia Plateau. Tribal members knew the Valley's generally milder climate could maintain their people in winter villages. There were lush wild grasses which could sustain horses and attract game from the winter snows of the nearby Blues, or from the giant high plateau that becomes desolate and dangerous during the cold season. The rolling terrain and numerous watersheds offered protection from nature and other hazards of the day. Here the water was plentiful and full of fish and seldom froze, even in the coldest years. The meadows were wonderful places to gather with other people to trade, compete and celebrate treaties. Compared to the region around them, the Walla Walla Valley was a safe refuge from the treacherous conditions which can often be found during the winter for hundreds of miles around. In this unique growing region, most of the earliest records of grapes and winemaking reference the Italians who had immigrated here in the mid to late 1800's and who brought with them their tradition of growing, making and drinking wine. Vines with these origins still exist in the Valley today. The first post-prohibition winery was Blue Mountain Vineyards. It was bonded in 1950 by the Pesciallo family where they produced Black Prince and other Italian varietal wines for a period of several years before succumbing to economics and climate. To the wine world of today, Walla Walla has become know for the quality and style of its red wines, especially Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with Syrah gaining notoriety in recent years. In the1970's, the pioneers of today's wine community began to think similar thoughts: that the Walla Walla Valley, with its long history of fruit growing, moderate climate, wine-making heritage, and interesting terrain might just be a place to grow vines and make wine on a commercial scale. These pioneers of the region applied for and received approval of the Walla Walla Valley as a unique American Viticultural Area (AVA) in 1984. It was the third in Washington State and also includes a portion of land in Oregon. In the time leading to the recognition of the appellation, four wineries had been bonded starting with Leonetti Cellar, and shortly thereafter, Woodward Canyon. L'Ecole Nº 41 and Waterbrook soon followed. In addition to the smaller vineyards that were being planted, the Valley's first large-scale, commercial vineyard Seven Hills was established. By the time the BATF recognized the Walla Walla Valley AVA, the Valley was beginning to gain attention from within the wine industry, as well as attracting publicity from journalists and media outside the region. The foundation for today’s industry had been laid and the benchmark for quality had been set. In addition, fruit from the area was now being harvested and a baseline for understanding the local growing conditions was being constructed. Every few years another winery would join the fold and take up the challenge of producing the highest quality wine and the growing of outstanding fruit. Seven Hills Winery and Patrick M. Paul each got their start during this time. More vines were added, although acreage increases were small each year. The industry was small and everyone knew everyone else involved, while the welcome mat remained out for any newcomers. Growers and winemakers alike regularly shared time in the cellar or at the table and together learned more about wines and vines. By 1990 there were just six wineries and the Valley's grape acreage stood at perhaps 100 acres. The total collective production of wine was microscopic by any measure, but it was the quality that was being noticed by many inside and outside the trade. As the tiny trickle of wine produced in the Walla Walla AVA began to flow to the outside world, a "wine renaissance" was beginning to happen globally. The Pacific Northwest had staked a claim in this new wine world and as people learned about the region, they also began to hear about Walla Walla. This interest spread rapidly to those with Walla Walla connections. The early 1990s saw the planting of more vines and the establishment of another large-scale vineyard, Pepper Bridge. At the same time, a group of local investors, working closely with the Napa based Chalone Wine group, laid the foundation for Canoe Ridge Vineyard, the Valley's first winery supported in part by a major outside investor. As the industry has grown, many new wineries have gotten their start in the arms of an established winery. Waterbrook Winery's modern production facility started the trend, sharing space, equipment, and any help needed. Other wineries also adopted “extra guests,” a practice that has helped form close, personal relationships throughout the local industry. By the turn of the new century, the Walla Walla Valley wine industry had 22 wineries and 800 acres of grapes. In the year 2000 the AVA had been expanded back to the original boundaries proposed in the1984 application. The year 2000 also saw the formation of the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance with 100% of the Valley's wineries and 98% of the Valley's planted acreage represented. Today, more than 60 Walla Walla Valley wineries and more than 1,200 acres of Walla Walla Valley grapes contribute to the ever growing, international acclaim garnered by the wines of this newly-emerging region of Washington State.

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