Rotie Cellars Northern Blend 2010
Rhone Red Blends from Walla Walla Valley, Washington
Modeled after a Cote Rotie (hence the winery name) this is a co-fermented blend of 95% Syrah (45% SJR Vineyard in the "Rocks" and the balance from Dwelley and Patina) and 5% Viognier. It displays a deep ruby color and a nose of raspberry, cherry, cassis and a bit of plum, with scents of lavender, sandalwood, orange peel, oriental incense and a hint of violets. The palate comprises of thick dark fruits wrapped around a deep bore core, underlain with licorice, Swiss chocolate and French roast. The back reveals a grainy texture that is intermixed with earthy minerals, dried cherry and orange peel, and touches of crème brulée, and roasted nuts, followed by chewy sweet-dry tannins on the finish.
Blend: 95% Syrah, 5% Viognier
The Wine Advocate - "Stepping things up a notch in concentration and richness, yet still holding onto the polish and elegance shown by all of Sean’s wines, the 2010 Northern Blend is a co-fermented blend of 95% Syrah and 5% Viognier that was aged mostly in neutral barrel before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. Deep ruby/purple, it is deep and dense aromatically, with smoky black fruits, bacon fat, dark chocolate, wild herbs and crushed rock-like minerality all emerging from the glass. Medium to full-bodied on the palate and simply impeccably put together, with a concentrated, rich palate weight that’s carried by a seamless texture and a lively, energetic feel, this thrilling, age-worthy Syrah should be given 3-4 years in the cellar and then consumed over the following 10-12 years. Drink 2016-2025."
Rotie Cellars Winery
When starting Rotie Cellars, Sean Boyd wanted to pay respect to the wines he truly loves to drink, those of France's Rhone Valley. From the dense Syrah-Viognier blends of the north, to the sultry GSM blends of the south, he has always felt there is plenty to love and learn. So he set a goal to start a winery based entirely on making traditional Rhone-style blends in Washington State. The idea is to combine old world winemaking techniques with the best Rhone varietal fruit in the area. Rotie will never be a large winery with a huge production, but rather, a small winery dedicated to creating old world wines from new world grapes. View all Rotie Cellars Wines
About Walla Walla ValleyView a map of Walla Walla Valley wineries
Sharing part of the valley with Oregon, Walla Walla is on the southeast side of the Columbia Valley. It is primarily red grape land, with Cabernet Sauvignon leading in the vineyards, followed by Merlot and the ever-growing and very popular, Syrah.In the 1990's, as Washington State was gaining more acclaim for its red wines, Walla Walla was hailed by wine critics for its quality and sense of place. That has not changed. Many red wines from Walla Walla show not only great complexity and elegance, but ageability. Though the region is known for the red wines, the most planted white grape here is Chardonnay.
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 & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.