Woodward Canyon Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington

Item No. 89918
  • red wine
  • collectible wine
  • RP91
Style: Big & Bold

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.

Ratings Pedigree:
  • 2001
  • WE93
  • ST91
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Winemaker's Notes

This 2003 Columbia Valley Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon is produced from grapes that were planted in the very early 1970's. The grapes were harvested by hand from Champoux Vineyard (98%) and Sagemoor Vineyard (2%) both on benches overlooking the Columbia River in southeastern Washington. The 2003 vintage was the warmest on record for Washington State.

The wine was pumped over and punched down two to three times per day in small stainless steel tanks. Average fermentation was between seven and twelve days with one or two tanks given extend maceration time. After pressing and racking, the various lots were moved to new French chateau barrels for aging and maturation. Later, in August of 2005, this wine was racked from barrel, assembled and bottled just before harvest started in early September 2005.

This 2003 Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon is a rich and powerful red wine. It expresses the purity of fully mature Washington Cabernet Sauvignon from a warm vintage incredibly well. Flavors of dried black cherry and cassis marry with spicy new oak and vanilla toast coats the mouth. The texture is soft and silky yet there are firm mature tannins in the finish. The color is dark reddish purple; the complex aromas leap from the glass. This red wine will benefit greatly from additional cellaring and, with proper storage, should last for twelve years or more.

Critical Acclaim

"Produced from vines planted in 1972, 1979, and 1981 in the world-class Champoux vineyard, the 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon Old Vines explodes from the glass with scents of spiced black fruits. Concentrated, powerful, and medium to full-bodied, it displays outstanding depth in its blackberry, cassis liqueur, black currant, and menthol flavors. Projected maturity: 2007-2017. Unlike recent vintages of Woodward Canyon’s reds, neither this top-notch effort nor any of the other wines I tasted during my visit exhibited any hard edges. It seems this old winery (by Washington standards) is reclaiming its rightful place among the state's top producers. "
91 Points

Learn About Woodward Canyon Map ItMap 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 Cabernet Sauvignon

(cab-uhr-NAY sow-veeh-yawn) King of Red Many refer to Cabernet Sauvignon as the king of red grapes. Perhaps that title is due to its ability to grow worldwide in a number of climates, or to the fact that it produces wine with such character yet such diversity. Either way, this grape is responsible, as a whole or a partner, for some of the greatest wines in the world. In Bordeaux,...

Read More About Cabernet Sauvignon

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