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Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

Cabernet Sauvignon from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
  • WS93
  • ST92
  • RP92
  • WE92
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Winemaker Notes

The 2009 shows a beautiful deep ruby color in the glass. The nose evolves dramatically after a couple of hours. Initially there are notes of dried fruits, strawberries and a hint of saddle leather. After about 90 minutes the aromas evolve and begin to show some high toned floral notes and red fruits. The juice is round and soft on the attack with nicely integrated tannins even in its youth. The ripe red fruit is balanced nicely by crisp acidity. With the deft touch of a true master, Chris Figgins captured the essence of this fantastic vintage in the 2009 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon. Please open at least a couple of hours before enjoying to allow this wine to show its true character.

Blend: 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

WS 93
Wine Spectator

Broad and generous, this is impressive for its graceful balance, with ripe blueberry and currant flavors at the core, persisting into a finish shaded with dried sage, white pepper and other savory notes, all of it wrapped in polished tannins. The finish doesn't quit.

ST 92
International Wine Cellar

Bright red-ruby. Musky cassis, cedar, tobacco leaf and dried herbs on the very ripe nose. Suave and seamless, with claret-like flavors of redcurrant, plum and tobacco leaf. A very distinctive, lightly herbal Old World style of cabernet with dusty, supple tannins and very good length. Seems subtler and more harmonious wine than the 2008 release. Grew creamier with aeration.

RP 92
The Wine Advocate

Only around 30% of Bledsoe’s and Figgins’ 2009 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon – which incorporates 10% Merlot and 3% Petit Verdot – is estate-grown, but that percentage is expected to double over the next three years, and eventually Bledsoe envisions an estate wine. Creme de cassis and jellied elderberry dominate the proceedings here, with a lovely but not overdone sense of sweetness, and inflected by hints of dried green herbs, cedar, and a welcome, soy-like saline savor that ensures a mouthwatering finish. While quite evident, the abundant tannins here are fine-grained and in no way disturb the impression of seamlessly pristine fruit.

WE 92
Wine Enthusiast

ill tasting like a very young wine, this opens with pretty fruit flavors that range from raspberry candy to dark layers of black cherry and cassis. The concentration and depth are apparent, though quite compact. The blend includes 14% Merlot and 10% Petit Verdot. Cellar Selection.

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Doubleback, , Washington
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.

Home to some of America’s most celebrated Pinot Noir...

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Home to some of America’s most celebrated Pinot Noir, Oregon benefits from a marginal climate where grapes must struggle to achieve full ripeness—a challenge that results in high-quality fruit. By far the most important region is the Willamette Valley, which is further subdivided into six smaller AVAs. Surrounded on three sides by mountain ranges, the Willamette Valley is characterized by warm to hot dry summers and cool, rainy winters during which cloud cover is a near-constant. Along with the warmer AVAs to the south, including Umpqua Valley and Rogue Valley, it benefits from cool Pacific breezes during the growing season. Further inland, Columbia Valley to the north and Snake River Valley to the east experience cooler, wetter conditions. Post-prohibition viticulture is a relatively new addition to the state, which had been previously deemed unsuitable for the planting of Vitis vinifera grape varieties. That all changed in the mid-1960s, when Pinot Noir was first grown successfully along with other Alsatian varieties. Over the next two decades or so, Oregon continued its ascent to become to Pinot Noir powerhouse we know it as today.

The obvious success story of Oregon is Pinot Noir, which here takes on a personality that could be described in general terms as somewhere in between the wines of California and Burgundy, and is often more affordable than either one. The combination of elegant balance, high acidity, and rustic earth plus bright red fruit places it solidly in the middle of the spectrum for this versatile variety. Other successful varieties here include Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, and Riesling.

Pinot Noir

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One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow...

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One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

In the Glass

Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

YNG259623_2009 Item# 123127

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