September 16, 2018
Bordeaux from the Northwest has more in common with the Cabernet you love than you might think.
If you love Napa Cabernets, you’ll love Washington merlots. No, seriously: Hear me out. It’s true that on its face, there’s no sense in the proposition. Beyond the fact that the two varieties share a Bordeaux heritage—and a few Bordeaux-esque flavors—they seemingly have little else in common. But hear me out.
Fans of Napa Cabernet with the level of interest it takes (granted, this borders on nerdiness) to parse the many individual AVAs within the valley know that there’s a certain character in the wines that come off the mountain peaks surrounding the valley proper: Mount Veeder, Diamond Mountain, Spring Mountain, Howell Mountain, Atlas Peak, and so on. Two traits in particular stand out in the Cabernet-dominated field: a firm, well-muscled tannin structure and a purity of fruity, laser-focused flavors. High elevations and volcanic soils are given general credit.
Featuring; Pepper Bridge 2015 Merlot Walla Walla Valley ($50): With an old-school balance of fruit, tannin, and acidity, this classic merlot has layers of gravel, tobacco, mint, florals, and black tea under (and over) mixed berries on an energetic palate.>>>Read the entire article on the Robb Report