Woodward Canyon Columbia Valley Merlot 2007
Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
Wine Style Guide
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
Alcohol By Volume: 15.8%
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%.
This Merlot was pumped over and punched down by hand two times per day in small stainless steel tanks. After pressing, settling and racking the various lots were moved to French barrels for aging and maturation. In the spring of 2009 following final racking, the wine was assembled and bottled and laid down in our cellars for additional development. The wine shows extraordinary complexity yet is softer and more elegant than several more recent vintages. Blending of fruit from such fantastic vineyards has produced a complex flavor profile of generous cherry, oak, spice and coffee; I pick up notes of toasted coconut and vanilla in the aroma. Rich fruit and fully mature tannins give this wine softness for drinking now yet with the proportion and structure to age well for six years or more.
"True to the dense, muscular style of Woodward Canyon's Merlots, this elevates the complexity in a near-perfect vintage. Deep and textural, it packs together concentrated red fruits, preserves and cassis. At first it shows a little heat from the 15% alcohol, but as it breathes open over hours (and even days) the primary fruit give way to subtle veins of olive, earth, coffee and toast. Editor's Choice"
"Woodward Canyon's red wines begin with the 2007 Merlot. It is a multi-regional blend containing 14% Cabernet Sauvignon. The majority of the fruit was sourced from the excellent Weinbau Vineyard. Medium crimson-colored it displays an excellent bouquet of balsam wood, Asian spices, violets, cassis, and black cherry with a hint of coffee/mocha in the background. Full-bodied and generous on the palate, it has plenty of ripe fruit, red and black fruit flavors, spice notes, and well-integrated tannin. It has the structure to evolve for 1-2 years but can be enjoyed now and over the next 6-8.
The Wine Advocate
"Merlot in the key of oak, this stylish wine leads with toffee and oak spice, guiding a background vocal of ripe plum. That fruit will need some cellar time to knit into the oak profile; then serve with roast pork and wild mushrooms."
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Learn About Woodward Canyon Map It
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.
Learn 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...
Read More About Columbia Valley
Learn About Merlot
No second fiddle
Merlot is coming back into its own. High popularity led to mass production, which then led to a backlash towards the variety (remember Miles in Sideways?). But passionate Merlot producers, and of course the right bank of Bordeaux, continued to produce quality versions of this grape. Merlot remains the principle grape of top chateaux in St...
Read More About Merlot