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Eroica Riesling 2011

Riesling from Columbia Valley, Washington
  • W&S93
  • WE93
  • RP90
11% ABV
  • WW92
  • RP91
  • WS90
  • RP91
  • WW91
  • W&S93
  • WW92
  • CG91
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3.8 25 Ratings
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3.8 25 Ratings
11% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The 2011 Eroica Riesling exhibits aromas and flavors of white peach, grapefruit and sweet lime with subtle mineral notes. The mouth-watering acidity is beautifully balanced by flavorful Washington Riesling fruit. After more than a decade, the winery has truly found the "Eroica style," striving for beautiful bright fruit with crisp acidity and enhanced mineralilty.

Critical Acclaim

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W&S 93
Wine & Spirits
Eroica in a cool vintage is driven by energy and freshness more than fruit, the acidity providing a cool, angular intensity. In this 2011, scents of peach and honeysuckle give way to stone fruit flavors that feel clean and pure, buoyed by a minerality that keeps the wine en pointe. A tremendous success in a vintage that required care and a sophisticated approach to viticulture.
WE 93
Wine Enthusiast
Complex and compelling, this has a luscious mix of fruits that run the Riesling gamut. It's creamy and textural, fresh and primary, with exceptional aging potential and fine, juicy, natural acidity. Cellar Selection
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-Loosen 2011 Riesling Eroica is scented with lime, apple blossom, clover, honeydew and mint, and gushes with juicy honeydew and apple fruit, its vivacity and (at 11% alcohol) levity reflecting the long, cool growing season including a summer without the usual hundred-degree heat spikes. But for all of that vivacity and lift, this Riesling is also downright lush, making for a refreshingly sorbet-like, metaphorically cooling impression. Its sweetness – at 22 grams – is perfectly judged to support the fruit but not be obvious or get in the way of the wine’s versatility. While not hugely complex, it's irresistible and impressively persistent, with hints of salt and stone suggesting the basis for future call-and-response.
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Eroica

Eroica

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Eroica, , Washington
Eroica
Launched in 1999, Eroica is a labor of love for two of the world's great Riesling producers. One from the Old World, Dr. Loosen estate of Germany, and the other from the New World, Chateau Ste. Michelle of Washington state. An intermingling of Old and New World philosophies and technique enables the crafting of an extraordinary Riesling from Washington state grapes. Named for Beethoven's Third Symphony, Eroica reflects not only its variety and site, but also its heritage: bold and forward from its Washington roots, elegant and refined from German inspiration.

The first five vintages of Eroica Riesling (1999-2003) were named to Wine Spectator's "Top 100" list.

"I have long believed that a Riesling revival would have to start with a prominent New World winery like Chateau Ste. Michelle."
- Ernst Loosen, Dr. Loosen estate

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington, and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde river, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful, and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb, or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

SOU320525_2011 Item# 118664

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