Chasing Rain Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
The 2018 Chasing Rain Cabernet Sauvignon is pure Red Mountain. Scorching days and gusty nights imbue this wine with hints of cherry cola, rich mocha, and tasty vanilla. And while it's perfect with a great steak or lamb chop, its long dark cherry finish might just tempt you to have it for dessert.
Blend: 93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
When people think of Washington State, they think of Seattle; of coffee and hipsters…and rain. Lots and lots of rain. Steady drizzle, cats and dogs, moss-is-our-state-flower kind of rain.
A surprise to many, it’s a different story as you make your way through the Columbia River gorge, east of the Cascades — the volcanic mountain range that divides the state in two. The landscape turns cowboy movie dry and dusty pretty quickly. Here, about 140 miles and a totally different climate away from Seattle, lies Red Mountain, rising gently from the desert floor, where a scant 5 inches of rain falls annually.
The stinginess of Mother Nature may seem unforgiving, but it’s her gift to our winemakers; one of control over irrigation which forces the grapes to struggle — a necessary penance on their journey to becoming rich, bold, intense reds. Our home gets 300-plus days of sun, including an hour per day more than Napa and Bordeaux. (Music to a viticulturalist’s ears.)
A coveted source of top quality red grapes among premier Washington producers, the Red Mountain AVA is actually the smallest appellation in the state. As its name might suggest, it is actually neither a mountain nor is it composed of red earth. Instead the appellation is an anticline of the Yakima fold belt, a series of geologic folds that define a number of viticultural regions in the surrounding area. It is on the eastern edge of Yakima Valley with slopes facing southwest towards the Yakima River, ideal for the ripening of grapes. The area’s springtime proliferation of cheatgrass, which has a reddish color, actually gives the area the name, "Red" Mountain.
Red Mountain produces some of the most mineral-driven, tannic and age-worthy red wines of Washington and there are a few reasons for this. It is just about the hottest appellation with normal growing season temperatures commonly reaching above 90F. The soil is particularly poor in nutrients and has a high pH, which results in significantly smaller berry sizes compared to varietal norms. The low juice to skin ratio in smaller berries combined with the strong, dry summer winds, leads to higher tannin levels in Red Mountain grapes.
The most common red grape varieties here are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah, among others. Limited white varieties are grown, namely Sauvignon blanc.
The reds of the area tend to express dark black and blue fruit, deep concentration, complex textures, high levels of tannins and as previously noted, have good aging capabilities.
A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon enjoys success all over the globe, its best examples showing potential to age beautifully for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in Bordeaux's Medoc where it is often blended with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbecand Petit Verdot. In the Napa Valley, ‘Cab’ is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy and sought-after “cult” wines. Somm Secret—DNA profiling in 1997 revealed that Cabernet Sauvignon was born from a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc in 17th century southwest France.