Pedestal Merlot 2008
Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
Vibrant flavors of fresh blackberries, currants and ripe red fruits are framed by notes of toasted oak and bittersweet chocolate. Dark and rich with great concentration, texture and a hint of baking spice that weaves through nuances of fresh huckleberry pie that linger on the finish.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2008 Pedestal Merlot is fashioned by the peripatetic Michel Rolland. Made up of 81% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, with the balance Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, it was aged for 22 months in 85% new French oak. It reveals a nose of cedar, Asian spices, incense, cassis, and black currant. Structured and savory on the palate with spicy black fruit flavors, it has the balance to evolve gracefully for 2-3 years and will offer prime drinking from 2013 to 2023. "
International Wine Cellar - "Good bright red-ruby. Sexy burnished redcurrant, minerals and flowers on the nose, complicated by chocolate and graphite. Lush, ripe and broad, with layered flavors of cassis, black cherry and licorice. Large-scaled, dense and airy, and not at all overly sweet. Finishes very long, with broad, dusty tannins and excellent structure. This really echoes on the aftertaste. A very successful and sophisticated Washington merlot made under the direction of Michel Rolland. Perhaps the best vintage to date for this bottling."
Wine Spectator - "Firm in texture, with a moderate grip of tannins surrounding dark berry, black currant and licorice flavors, lingering gently and persistently. One sip demands another. Best from 2012 through 2016. 2,012 cases made. "
Wine Enthusiast - "A blend of 81% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. An unusually tight Pedestal, this absolutely must be decanted. It opens well, with black fruits, toasted grain, and firm tannins, then hits a wall and stops short. However, with a lot of breathing time and/or aerating, it broadens out a bit and shows more length and finesse."
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Michel Rolland crafts wines for many of the world’s most famous wineries, but his roots come from Pomerol, home to Bordeaux’s finest Merlots. In partnership with Washington wine visionary Allen Shoup, Michel has created a Columbia Valley Merlot that exemplifies the complexity and concentration of flavors for which his wines are internationally known. Pedestal is one of six distinct red wines from the Long Shadows Vintners collection.
An intense, fruit-forward wine, bursting with fresh blueberries, ripe plum, cedar and spice. Good concentration in the wine adds to its pleasing mouth feel; balanced acidity enhances its appeal. Supple tannins are well-integrated on the entry, across the mid-palate and throughout a long, layered finish. View all Pedestal 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.