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Latah Creek Lemberger 1999

Other Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Winemaker Notes

    Lemberger grapes were brought here to Washington State from central Europe (known there by: Kekfrancos in Hungary, Blauer Frankische in Austria and Limburger in Germany) on an experimental basis in the early 1980s. This delightful red wine has a characteristic dark color, bright berry-like fruit, and a velvety feel on the palate. Whether made in a light, fruity style, without any oak contact, or in a more serious oak-aged fashion, this wine is quite appealing in its youth due to moderate tannins levels.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Latah Creek

    Latah Creek

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    Latah Creek, Columbia Valley, Washington
    Latah Creek Wine Cellars was established in 1982 in Spokane. The winery is one of only a few family owned and operated wineries within Washington. At Latah Creek our stylistic aim is to create wines that taste like the grapes from which they came. This is accomplished by using traditional winemaking principles and by the selection of exceptional fruit. Subjecting the wines to the least amount of processing and handling possible enables these natural varietal flavors to remain intact from grape to bottle. Our major goal is to produce wines with natural balance and complexity, providing a perfect compliment to food and absolute enjoyment by themselves.

    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.

    Other Red Blends

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    With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

    VEH001642_1999 Item# 52108