Woodward Canyon Artist Series Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington
This 1998 cabernet sauvignon was produced 100% from cabernet sauvignon grapes grown at Canoe Ridge vineyard, Champoux vineyard, Sagemoor vineyards above the Columbia River in southeastern Washington, and at Pepper Bridge vineyard in Walla Walla, Washington. All grapes were harvested by and were sorted prior to crush.
The 1998 vintage was a rather warm one for Washington and this cabernet sauvignon is a spectacular expression of fully mature cabernet from the Columbia Valley. In vintages such as 1998, we are able to work with physiologically mature fruit, which gives extreme ripeness and concentration to the wines. This cabernet was punched down and pumped over in small stainless steel tanks three or four times per day. Fermentation length varied between one and two weeks. After gentle pressing and racking, this wine was moved to new French chateau barrels (96%) and new American oak(4%) for aging. The wine was bottled unfined and unfiltered on May 10 and 11, 2000.
This cabernet is integrated with spicy new oak, generous black fruits, great texture and a deep purple color. The wine is beautifully proportioned with a long finish of cassis, chocolate and toasted oak. This cabernet will benefit significantly with additional bottle age and will easily age for twelve to fifteen years with proper storage.
Wine Enthusiast - "An intense, deeply extracted wine with a powerful bouquet of blackberry jam, red-fruit preserves, and plenty of new oak. This wine screams “Drink me!” from the first sniff. It’s an 18-wheeler running down a steep grade. It explodes on the palate with a cloudburst of fruit, chocolate, smoke and oak, descending via soft, smooth tannins into a ripe, seductive, extended finish."
Wine Spectator - "Firm and round, with black cherry and herb flavors galore, which echo nicely on the finish, picking up hints of cedar and spice. "
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "Full deep red. Expressive nose combines raspberry, redcurrant, espresso and roasted oak tones. Sweet and concentrated, with lovely dark berry, coffee and oak flavors and ripe balancing acidity. Finishes long and youthfully aggressive, with substantial but ripe tannins and impressive lingering fruit flavor."
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Woodward Canyon Winery
Woodward Canyon Winery was founded by Rick Small in 1981. He is currently soul-searching on the subject of terroir. Debating the suitability of certain varietals to certain vineyard plots has become a quandary. On the one hand, the grapes growing there do fine and are the basis for extremely successful wines (Chardonnay, mostly); on the other, would Merlot or Cabernet Franc provide even more exciting character? The evolution of the Northwest wine industry continues. View all Woodward Canyon 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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