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Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Cabernet Sauvignon from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
  • RP94
  • WS94
  • WE94
14.4% ABV
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14.4% ABV

Winemaker Notes

2008 is one of my favorite vintages and the '08 Doubleback exhibits every reason why. In the glass the wine has an inky dark color to the rim. The nose is simply gorgeous, leading with floral aromas, cassis and raspberry puree over chocolate, fading to coffee and a hint of pine resin in the background. On the palate, the wine delivers a fantastic purity of fruit across a plush mouth feel which is cut by incredible natural acidity. This year we added Cabernet Sauvignon from the LeFore vineyard grown in "gravels" which builds complexity and adds a savory minerality to the finish of the wine. Slightly more concentrated than the '07 Doubleback, I believe this wine will age beautifully for 20+ years but is drinking fantastic right now.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The fruit for the 2008 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon was sourced from four prominent Walla Walla vineyards with the final blend consisting of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, and 7% Petit Verdot aged in 60% new French oak for 22 months. A total of 900 cases were produced. Notes of pain grille, pencil lead, Asian spices, incense, violets, black cherry, and a hint of chocolate inform the nose of a dense, smooth-textured, suave, beautifully balanced wine that will reward 4-5 years of cellaring. It offers a drinking window extending from 2015 to 2028.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
Broad, ripe and generous, with a weightless feel to the dense cherry, blackberry and herb flavors, mingling effortlessly with fine tannins on the long finish. Should age to an elegant style. Drink now through 2020. 900 cases made.
WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
Not a lot of wood scents are showing, though the aging took place in roughly 50% new oak barrels. This has forward, pretty black fruits, juicy acids, some still-unresolved astringency, and aromatically it incorporates a nice herbal note, reminiscent of green tea. Still too young to drink, and the rating could go higher with more bottle age.
Cellar Selection
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Doubleback, Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
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Chris Figgins and Drew Bledsoe go back many years, as they grew up a stone’s throw from each other, some 400 yards from the Leonetti Cellar Estate in Walla Walla. After high school, they both went on to pursue their own ambitions and personal successes. The two reconnected in early 2007 when Drew made the decision to enter the wine business. After much research, Drew decided on his hometown of Walla Walla as his first choice for his vineyard and winery location. Chris was certainly at the top of Drew’s list for a consulting winemaker but was unsure of Chris’ interest outside of Leonetti Cellar. The timing was very serendipitous as Chris had just started Figgins Enological and was looking for the perfect client for his first consulting collaboration. Chris, having a very high respect for Drew, seriously entertained taking on Doubleback as his client and their business relationship became official in the spring of 2007 just as Drew announced his retirement from the NFL. Chris consults on all winemaking and viticulture practices as well as assisted in the vineyard design and planting for McQueen, Drew’s estate vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley. It is a true collaboration from dirt to bottle.

Walla Walla Valley

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Responsible for some of Washington’s most highly acclaimed wines, the Walla Walla Valley has experienced a surge in popularity in recent years. It is home to both historic wineries and younger, up-and-coming producers. Though it is cooler and wetter than most of Washington State’s viticultural areas, irrigation from the Columbia River is still common, though some vineyards on the rainier eastern end of the AVA are able to dry farm.

The conditions in the Walla Walla Valley are perfectly suited to Rhône-inspired Syrahs, distinguished by savory notes of black olives, smoke, bacon fat, and fresh earth. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are produced in a range of styles from smooth and supple to tannic and structured. White varieties are a relative rarity here. Sauvignon Blanc is sometimes blended with Sémillon in the style of Bordeaux white blends, resulting in a richer, rounder version take on the variety. Plantings of Viognier are minimal, but often quite successful.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is sometimes referred to as the “king” of red grapes. It can be somewhat unapproachable early in its youth but has the potential to age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more at its best. Small berries and tough skins provide its trademark firm tannic grip, while high acidity helps to keep the wine fresh for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region (and in St-Emillion and Pomerol, where it plays a supporting role to Merlot). The top Médoc producers use Cabernet Sauvignon for their wine’s backbone, blending it with Merlot and smaller amounts of Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot. On its own, Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin, and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice, and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it's typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb, and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

RPT74950398_2008 Item# 113992