Murphy's Law Red 2006
Other Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
Varietal Composition: 65% Merlot 19% Cabernet Franc 9% Malbec 6% Sangiovese
Location: Columbia Valley/Yakima, Washington Outlook Vineyard Elerding Vineyard Slide Mountain Vineyard
An unusual (or as Murphy's Law puts it, "disastrous") blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Sangiovese. Harvested carefully and with love and attention to each cluster of grapes. Then carried gently to press and then into cold fermenters. Fermented in small 1.5 ton tanks. Punch-downs daily. Gravity fed to barrel with single racking before bottling. Barrel aged for 9 months
An inky-dark purple hue. Vibrant nose of plum, cherry and cassis. The palate is filled with plums and grilled meats with hints of smoke and black mission fig. The sturdy tannins along with classic Washington state acidity stretch into the long and elegant finish.
Wine Spectator - "Supple, silky and generous with its olive-inflected cherry and blackberry flavors, billowing in the easy breeze of a long finish. Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Sangiovese. Drink now through 2012."
Murphy's Law Winery
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About Columbia ValleyView a map of Columbia Valley wineries
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.
Notable FactsMerlot 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.
About WashingtonRelated Links: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.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost 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.