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Chateau Ste. Michelle Canoe Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington
  • WE91
  • WS91
  • RP90
14.5% ABV
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4.2 8 Ratings
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4.2 8 Ratings
14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Planted by vineyard manager Mimi Nye in 1991, our vineyard at Canoe Ridge Estate has grown before our eyes to produce more concentrated and opulent wines. This wine shows amazing intensity to go with ripe cherry fruit. The Canoe Ridge Estate Cab is a beautifully balanced wine that is a classic expression of Washington fruit.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
A fine bottle-full, fleshy, immediately throwing out dense aromatics with toast and roaste coffee and bitter chocolate components. A deep vein of black cherry and cassis keeps the core tight and focused, and a small splash of Syrah adds the scent of black pepper.
WS 91
Wine Spectator
Supple, ripe and generous, with a black pepper note weaving harmoniously through the focused black cherry and toast flavors that push through fine tannins on the refined finish. Drink now through 2016.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
For thoughts on Chateau Ste Michelle’s uniqueness and recent evolution, consult my extensive April, 2013 text designed to introduce recent tasting notes. The Ste. Michelle 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Canoe Ridge Estate is unblended save for a touch of Syrah such as finds its way into many of this winery's otherwise Bordelais blends. Aged in diverse barrels 60% of which were new but are thankfully discreet, this displays the ripe dark cherry fruit with piquancy and cut of berry pip and skin and rich savor of blond tobacco, nut oils, dark chocolate, and nutmeg. The combination here of textural caress with vivacity is noteworthy – no doubt reflecting this relatively cool, prolonged growing season and windy, riverside location – and hints of salt and iodine add invigoration and saliva-inducement to a satisfyingly-sustained finish.
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Chateau Ste. Michelle

Chateau Ste. Michelle

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Chateau Ste. Michelle, Columbia Valley, Washington
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Founded in 1934, Chateau Ste. Michelle is the oldest winery in Washington with some of the most mature vineyards in the Columbia Valley. The winery combines Old World winemaking with New World innovation and is best known for its award-winning Riesling, Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Chateau Ste. Michelle receives some of the highest accolades in the industry, including "American Winery of the Year" by Wine Enthusiast for 2004 and "2005 Winery of the Year" by Restaurant Wine. In addition, the winery's Eroica Riesling, crafted from a partnership with German winemaker Ernst Loosen, has been named to Wine Spectator's prestigious "Top 100" wines list for five consecutive years.

Chateau Ste. Michelle is one of the few premium wineries in the world with two state-of-the-art wineries, one devoted to whites and another to reds. This dedicated approach to winemaking allows winemaker Bob Bertheau to build winemaking programs to the unique specifications of red and white wines. While all of Chateau Ste. Michelle's vineyards are located on the east side of the Cascade Mountains where the climate is dry and sunny, Bob Bertheau makes the award winning white wines in Woodinville, 15 miles northeast of Seattle. The winery's expansive, 87-acre estate hosts more than 250,000 visitors annually for tours, tastings, dinners and outdoor summer concerts.

Columbia Valley

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A large and geographically diverse AVA capable of producing a wide variety of wine styles, the Columbia Valley AVA is home to 99% of Washington state’s total vineyard area. A small section of the AVA even extends into northern Oregon!

Because of its size, it is necessarily divided into several distinctive sub-AVAs, including Walla Walla Valley and Yakima Valley—which are both further split into smaller, noteworthy appellations. A region this size will of course have varied microclimates, but on the whole it experiences extreme winters and long, hot, dry summers. Frost is a common risk during winter and spring. The towering Cascade mountain range creates a rain shadow, keeping the valley relatively rain-free throughout the entire year, necessitating irrigation from the Columbia River. The lack of humidity combined with sandy soils allows for vines to be grown on their own rootstock, as phylloxera is not a serious concern.

Red wines make up the majority of production in the Columbia Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon is the dominant variety here, where it produces wines with a pleasant balance of dark fruit and herbs. Wines made from Merlot are typically supple, with sweet red fruit and sometimes a hint of chocolate or mint. Syrah tends to be savory and Old-World-leaning, with a wide range of possible fruit flavors and plenty of spice. The most planted white varieties are Chardonnay and Riesling. These range in style from citrus and green apple dominant in cooler sites, to riper, fleshier wines with stone fruit flavors coming from the warmer vineyards.

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 Washington, 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.

AMR68149_2008 Item# 108764