2014 Woodward Canyon, Artist Series #23 Cabernet Sauvignon, $49.75
Winery info: When Woodward Canyon was founded in 1982 by Rick Small and his wife Darcey Fugman-Small, it was the second winery in the Walla Walla Valley. It has continued to be one of the most highly regarded wineries in the state with many awards and accolades to attest to that. They began producing their “Artist Series” Cab in 1992. They source each vintage from some of the oldest and most respected vineyards in the state, with the intent of showcasing the finest Cabernet Sauvignon in Washington. The label changes every year featuring work from a different artist.
Winemaker: Kevin Mott
Grapes: 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot.
Vineyard sources: Champoux, Sagemoor, Woodward Canyon Estate, and Summit View vineyards.
Flavor profile: Rich, enticing, and elegant, with complex and nuanced notes of ripe black fruits, baking spice, and graham. It is full-bodied and aromatic, with lush texture and a long finish.
Production/Availability: They made 3250 cases (of 750 ml bottles) and it’s still in good supply.
Drinkability: It is delicious now but as the winery notes, it will benefit greatly from additional cellaring and should develop for ten years or more.
Food Pairing: Perfect for red meat, especially châteaubriand.
2013 :Nota Bene Cellars, Stone Tree Vineyard Syrah, $35
Winery info: Tim Narby has been making wine since 1986, first as part of the Boeing Winemakers Club and then, starting with the 2001 vintage, at his own winery in South Seattle. We have been carrying his wines since the 2005 vintage and have been impressed at how they have grown more sophisticated and nuanced every year.
Winemaker: Tim Narby
Grapes: 95% Syrah, 5% Viognier
Vineyard sources: Syrah from Stone Tree Vineyard on the Wahluke Slope; Viognier from Zillah.
Flavor profile: This wine was a big hit when Tim poured it at a recent tasting in the shop. It is deep, rich, and full-bodied, with a smooth, velvety texture. It has dark fruit flavors, notes of savory spice, and an inviting underlying earthiness.
Production/Availability: 69 cases. It should be available for a while.
Drinkability: It is tasting beautifully now, but could age another eight to ten years.
Food Pairing: As Tim suggests on the label, it is perfect for grilled or roasted umami-dominated food.