Desert Wind Ruah 2005
Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
Crafted from fruit grown in the Columbia Valley of Washington, the Desert Wind Ruah is an affirmation of eastern Washington's viticultural prowess. This full bodied, Bordeaux-inspired blend is enveloped in a lush core of concentrated blackberry fruit with a hint of anise on the palate.
The wine has hints of toasted oak and almond spice, as well as a rich garnet color, which is complemented by soft, velvety tannins and a lingering finish.
Enjoy the Ruah alone or with grilled meats, tomato based
entrees, and soft cheeses. Drink now through 2011.
Desert Wind Winery
The concept to create this brand began with the idea to create a blended red wine. The intent was to make a Bordeaux-like blend using Washington fruit, this objective in turn led to the creation of Desert Wind. Desert Wind was first the name of the vineyard site. It had come about simply enough, coined by Jo Ann Fries; it implied the climate in eastern Washington where the vineyard was planted. Desert Wind came to be synonymous with the superior wines it was capable of producing and thus was translated into the winery name. The theory behind Desert Wind is small lots of fruit, longer barrel aging techniques and something that is created to be very unique and personal.
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About Columbia Valley
Columbia Valley is the largest of Washington State's wine growing regions, with almost 11 million acres. It encompasses a number of smaller regions, including Yakima Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Red Mountain and more. The vast area consists of a range of climates, allowing viticulturists to plant a diverse selection of grape varieties. Most wineries plant rows sparsely, which helps the vines survive the harsh winters.
Merlot is the most popular and most planted grape of the area, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. Syrah and Riesling are also popular and continue to grow in acreage.
Now the number two producer in the United States, Washington State has also grown in quality.
So how does a state known for rain and coffee produce high quality wines? They plant their grapes on the east side of the Cascade mountains, away from that ever-present rain cloud that sits along the coast. Perhaps wine grapes do well since the sandy loam soils east of the Cascade range give way to an almost desert-like land, saved from drought only by the helpful rivers that run through the area – and the good irrigation systems.
Thinking that the state would do best with typical northern growing grapes like Riesling and Gewurtztraminer, turns out the apple state is well-suited for reds, namely Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and, more recently, Syrah. Of course, whites have not been forgotten - Washington State Rieslings range from bone-dry to sweet, are well-structured and high quality, and Chardonnay dominates most of the other white plantings, making a range of wines. But the reds of the region, Merlot in particular, have made Washington State a quality force to be reckoned with.
3 ratings, 2 with reviews
One of the best price/value wines of 2008. The proof is in the difficulty of finding and purchasing this wine. At $10 a bottle, which I found several months ago, to the current (if you can even get it) $20+ price, this remains an excellent value, considering the drinkability, deep color, and fine food match-ups. Price/Value for 2008....it doesn't get better than this. I use Cellar Tracked for my inventory and reviews, and was dismayed by all the snobs who carefully found miniscule issues with this wine. Good grief, these folk need to get a life, and a new tasting tongue! Keep it coming Ruah!
If you enjoy Bordeaux blends, you will be hard-pressed to find a better vintage, even at 3 or 4 times the price. The Ruah is incredibly smooth and will work well on virtually any occasion.
Alcohol By Volume Guide
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.