L'Ecole 41 Ferguson Estate Red 2016  Front Label
L'Ecole 41 Ferguson Estate Red 2016  Front LabelL'Ecole 41 Ferguson Estate Red 2016  Front Bottle Shot

L'Ecole 41 Ferguson Estate Red 2016

  • JS96
  • JD95
  • W&S94
  • WE91
750ML / 14.5% ABV
Other Vintages
  • JD95
  • JS94
  • WE93
  • W&S92
  • RP95
  • JS93
  • WE92
  • W&S91
  • RP94
  • WE92
  • WE92
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Ferguson’s favor profile is distinctly influenced by its volcanic basalt soil. This massive wine offers complex aromas of espresso, tobacco, and dark mineral –laced fruit. Layers of wild blackberries and dusty tannins integrate with favors of flint and graphite on the palate. Concentrated natural acidity leads to a robust and lingering finish.

Blend: 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, 6% Malbec

Critical Acclaim

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JS 96
James Suckling

I love the fragrant black-raspberry and violet notes that pull you into this concentrated yet elegant red. Great tannin structure and freshness that could wake the dead. The finish is super long, focussed and minerally. A blend of 62 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 26 per cent merlot, six per cent cabernet franc and six per cent malbec. From organically grown grapes.

JD 95
Jeb Dunnuck
Incorporating the most Cabernet Sauvignon of the three top tier releases, the 2016 Estate Ferguson Ferguson Vineyard is 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, and the balance Cabernet Franc and Malbec, all aged in 50% new barrels. It's a full-bodied, powerful wine that has a distinct salinity and a marine-like note in its red and black fruits, spice, crushed rocks, and cedar aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, concentrated, and structured, it nevertheless has the charming, balanced, layered style of the vintage front and center. It too has good acidity and is going to benefit from 3-4 years of bottle age.
W&S 94
Wine & Spirits
A blend of cabernet, merlot, malbec and cabernet franc, this feels as firm and vertical as an edifice—or the basalt bedrock upon which Ferguson Vineyard is planted, in the hilltop Sevein project. It starts out shy and reserved, combining modest vanilla-oak scents with warm plums and a distant leafiness. As it takes on air, the flavors start to crowd the glass, compressed and powerful. This is years from its peak, built to last two decades or more.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Cabernet Sauvignon (62%) and Merlot (26%) make up the majority of this wine, with the rest equal parts Cabernet Franc and Malbec. The aromas of bittersweet chocolate, herb, dusty earth, graphite, vanilla and cherry show delineation and appeal on the nose. The palate brings a mouthful of restrained fruit flavors, with firm, puckering tannins backing them up. A mouthwatering finish displays a mix of red and black fruit. Best after 2023, with a long life beyond that.
Cellar Selection
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L'Ecole 41

L'Ecole 41

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L'Ecole 41, Washington
L'Ecole 41 Winery Video

Founded in 1983 in the Walla Walla Valley, L’Ecole No 41 is one of Washington State’s most iconic and oldest family-owned wineries. Housed in the historic Frenchtown School depicted on our label, we have earned international acclaim for producing distinctive wines of the highest quality. We craft ultra-premium wines that re?ect the unmistakable typicity of Washington State and the unique terroir of our Walla Walla Valley vineyards.

Growing and making 100% of our wines, each bottle is handcrafted with a commitment to quality in the vineyards and the winery. More than three decades of winemaking experience, ongoing investments in our Walla Walla Estate Ferguson and Seven Hills Vineyards, and long term relationships with many of the most prominent vineyards in Washington State are central to our well-known reputation for quality and consistency across our wine portfolio. These tenets will continue to sustain L’Ecole well into the future. 

L’Ecole is one of the most honored wineries in Washington State. We are proud to be recognized by Wine & Spirits Magazine as a Top 100 Winery of the Year for fourteen consecutive years. In 2014, Decanter awarded our 2011 Estate Ferguson the International Trophy for Best Bordeaux Blend in the World! In 2016, the 2013 Ferguson won the International Trophy for Best New World Bordeaux Blend from the Six Nations Wine Challenge.



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Walla Walla Valley Wine

Columbia Valley, Washington

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Responsible for some of Washington’s most highly acclaimed wines, the Walla Walla Valley has experienced a surge in popularity in recent years and is home to both historic wineries and younger, up-and-coming producers.

The Walla Walla Valley, a Native American name meaning “many waters,” is located in southeastern Washington; part of the appellation actually extends into Oregon. Soils here are well-drained, sandy loess over Missoula Flood deposits and fractured basalt.

It is a region perfectly suited to Rhône-inspired Syrahs, distinguished by savory notes of red berry, black olive, smoke and fresh earth. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot create a range of styles from smooth and supple to robust and well-structured. White varieties are rare but some producers blend Sauvignon Blanc with Sémillon, resulting in a rich and round style, and plantings of Viognier, while minimal, are often quite successful.

Of note within Walla Walla, is one new and very peculiar appellation, called the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater. This is the only AVA in the U.S. whose boundaries are totally defined by the soil type. Soils here look a bit like those in the acclaimed Rhône region of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, but are large, ancient, basalt cobblestones. These stones work in the same way as they do in Chateauneuf, absorbing and then radiating the sun's heat up to enhance the ripening of grape clusters. The Rocks District is within the part of Walla Walla that spills over into Oregon and naturally excels in the production of Rhône varieties like Syrah, as well as the Bordeaux varieties.

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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 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.

Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends

Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. 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.

Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends

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 Secrets for Bordeaux Blends

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

WWH154504_2016 Item# 532917

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