Tamarack Cellars Merlot 2007
Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
Huckleberry, black currant and cherry pipe tobacco entice the nose while flavors of chocolate, raspberry, black cherry and bright acidity coat your tongue. This wine is heavily Red Mountain influenced – a great Merlot for Cab lovers.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2007 Merlot contains 11% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Cabernet Franc aged for 12 months in 60% new oak, primarily American. Deep purple in color, it displays an attractive bouquet of sandalwood, Asian spices, incense, lavender, cassis, and black currant. Ripe, easy-going, and layered on the palate, this is a pleasure-bent offering that can be enjoyed now but has the stuffing to evolve for 1-2 years. "
Wine Enthusiast - "Dark and juicy, the tight flavors are a mix of black cherry and cassis, with a tart mouthfeel and smooth finishing tannins. Though it sees 60% new oak, the wine spends relatively little time in those barrels, and doesn’t show as much oak influence as you’d suspect. A firm finish from Red Mountain tannins brings in dark chocolate, smoke and coffee grounds."
Tamarack Cellars Winery
Founded in 1998 by Ron and Jamie Coleman, Tamarack Cellars is dedicated to the production of small lot, hand-crafted wines from select vineyards in the Walla Walla, Yakima, and Columbia Valley appellations. The winery is located in a restored WW II fire station and barracks at the Walla Walla Airport. View all Tamarack Cellars Wines
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 & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.