Kavana Wine Tasting: Washington Reds

Seattle, WA
Tasted Tuesday, December 26, 2006 by Eric with 642 views

Introduction

I hosted a small tasting for 8 people. The wines all came from my cellar and reflect my increasingly focused Washington collection (Quilceda, Betz, Cadence, Ross Andrew, and Andrew Will being the main wines).

Flight 1 (3 Notes)

We started off with Merlots for a hopefully less tannic introduction.

  • 2000 Betz Family Clos de Betz 91 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley

    Wine of the flight. A nice berry nose with a whiff of tobacco and some fleeting notes of brett. Mmm, the palate is fantastic, round, juicy and ready. Nice notes of black cherry move to a long finish showing some pleasing notes of bitter chocolate. The balance here is impeccable. Probably the most drinkable and pleasurable wine of the night.

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  • 2000 Andrew Will Merlot Ciel du Cheval Vineyard 87 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain

    Hmm, a somewhat difficult showing. Bright aromatics but with a hint of tomato paste showing this as a little overripe. The palate is rich with a bit of Welch's grape jelly, quite sweet. Some notions of stem as well as some alcohol poking out. I'm pointing out the flaws, but there was a nice core here as well. A solid effort.

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  • 2000 Quilceda Creek Merlot 92 Points

    USA, Washington

    The first bottle was corked, so I opened a second. It would have benefited from the 90 minutes of air that the other wines saw. Tight aromatics. Tarry and a bit oaky with some lactic notes of cheddar cheese. Wow, what a gorgeous palate, black, supercharged with long, superfine, sneaky tannins that coat your teeth. Probably the best wine of the flight but still a long way from being ready.

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Flight 2 (3 Notes)

Then we moved into the younger reds which were mostly Cab-dominated.

  • 2000 Andrew Will Cabernet Sauvignon Ciel du Cheval Vineyard 90 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain

    Wine of the flight for the most tasters. Ashy notes of charcoal and mineral on the nose. Pert, juicy and lively on the palate with nice grip. Maybe a little bit linear, dare I say boring, but this is truly a great example of Ciel du Cheval Cabernet.

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  • 2001 Cadence Ciel du Cheval Vineyard 88 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain

    The wine is somewhat marred by notes of VA leading to a slightly muddy element on what is otherwise a floral, terrific nose. The juicy palate shows a sweet core of raspberry fruit finishing out spicy and then showing chalky tannins.

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  • 2001 Ross Andrew Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 91 Points

    USA, Washington, Columbia Valley

    My wine of the flight. A very distinct nose showing mineral, resin and pine with a hint of pickle barrel. The palate is spicy, a darned nice Cabernet. Still pretty grippy and a little dry on the firm finish but worth enjoying now.

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Flight 3 (3 Notes)

Finally we finished up with three examples that were slightly older.

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