The 1999 Sagelands Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is a complex wine in the Bordeaux style or what is called Meritage in the U.S.
The grapes used to make Sagelands Vineyard wines are regional expressions of vineyards within the Columbia Valley appellation. We are developing key growing areas of this appellation to produce wines with distinct flavors. We call these areas the "Four Corners." They are: Wahluke Slope, Horse Heaven Hills, Walla Walla Valley and Rattlesnake Hills/Ahtanum Ridge. The grapes for the 1999 Cabernet Sauvignon were from the Horse Heaven Hills and Rattlesnake Hills/Ahtanum Ridge areas.
Because we blend all five of the traditional Bordeaux varietals (Cabernet Sauvignon, with small amounts of Merlot, Cabernet
Franc, Petit Verdot, and Malbec) into our Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine has many layers of aroma and flavor. The Cabernet Sauvignon gives the wine rich black cherry and black currant (cassis) fruit. The flavors are dark fruit and appealing tart cherry combined with chocolate and roasted coffee. The Merlot contributes livelier raspberry aromas and flavors and softens the tannins brought by the Cabernet Sauvignon. The Cabernet Franc portion of the blend adds a floral note to the aromas and a light touch of dried herbs. Cabernet Franc further balances and softens the wine on the palate.
Even though the percentages of Malbec and Petit Verdot are small, the intensity of these varietals contribute to the wine. Our Malbec is sweet and soft, with ripe plum aromas. Adding Petit Verdot is like adding blueberry concentrate, incredibly intense, with nice acidity to give the wine a refreshing crispness on the finish. The new American oak gives the wine a sweet-vanilla oak component, toastiness and further enhances the chocolate and coffee notes of the Cabernet Sauvignon.
The summation of these different components is a wine with aromas and flavors of Bing and black cherry, cocoa, coffee and toasty oak. Fine tannins, richness of body and the tart cherry undertones make this Sagelands Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon a great match with grilled beef, pork tenderloin or robust meat dishes in reduction sauces. It also goes well with smoked Gouda cheese and simple pastas.
Kevin Mott, Winemaker