Paul Gregutt's Reviews in The Wine Enthusiast's Advance Buying Guide Sept. 24, 2012
2009 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Red Wine - "This blend is 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Cabernet Franc and 22% Merlot, using grapes sourced entirely from this iconic Red Mountain vineyard. Notes of spice and iron interplay with tightly wound berry and cassis fruit. This is a steely, muscular wine, with an underpinning of graphite. History has proven that it will age beautifully. 94 points."
This wine also ranked #32 on The Seattle Times list of Top 100 Wines from Washington and Oregon.
2009 Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon - "Absolutely huge fruit blows out of this bottle as soon as it's opened. A rush of gorgeous black cherry is buoyed by snappy acidity and generously finished with smoke and coffee accents from having aged in 50% new oak. Details of iron and baking spice emerge also, and the silky tannins glide through a lengthy and delightful finish. A blend of 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 5% Merlot. 94 points."
2009 Artist Series #9 - "This new Artist Series red is... 79% Cabernet Franc and 21% Cabernet Sauvignon. Tight and tannic, it has excellent structure and depth, with a black fruit note, and a mocha-flavored finish. The muscle is there to reward cellaring for up to a decade. 93 points."
2009 Palisade - "...Smoky and focused, it's a riot of loganbery, blueberry and other blue and purple fruits. The tangy mouhfeel brings in streaks of coffee and mineral, with a tart, elegant finish. 92 points."
2009 Sundance - "A great vintage for the Sundance Red, this is 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc and 14% Syrah. The addition of Syrah really livens up the mix. It's a supple, sappy, sinuous red, with rich and complex cherry and berry fruits. The 30% new oak is not only lavish for a $20 wine, but it judiciously complements all of the good fruit. 91 points."
2009 Commander Comet Syrah - "Made using Syrah from the Boushey, Riverbend, and Lewis Vineyards, this is a spicy, lively wine, with bright boysenberry fruit and citrusy acids. Give it some time to breathe, and it becomes downright exuberant, with a lightly peppery finish. 90 points."
Our 2009 Champoux Vineyard wine is # 13 on Sean Sullivan's list of Best 100 Washington Wines in 2012 http://www.seattlemet.com/bars-and-nightlife/best-washington-wines/articles/best-washington-wines-the-2012-list
Steve Tanzer, Issue # 159 November/December 2011 : "2008 Champoux Vineyard Red Wine - Bright ruby-red. Pure, classic cabernet aromas of cassis, black cherry, bitter chocaolate, licorice and black olive. Glossy, sweet and concentrated, with a smooth texture supported by firm structure. Best on the long, mounting finish, which features supple tannins and a strong sense of sappy extract. Superb cabernet-based blend, built for a graceful evolution in bottle. This is an incredible value. 93 points "
Wine Spectator Insider, August 17, 2011 - Champoux Vineyard 2008 "Supple and velvety in texture, brimming with beautifully articulated plum, blackberry and currant fruit, nicely shaded with hints of rosemary and coffee. Shows elegance and power. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Drink now through 2018. 93 points. "
July 6, 2011 - Artist Series #8 2008 "Polished, focused and juicy with dark berry, showing a hint of cherry and an overlay of mineral and floral character. Lingers easily on the refined finish. Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2016. 91 points."
Wine Enthusiast review by Paul Gregutt, June, 2011:
2008 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard - "This blend is 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Cabernet Franc and 9% Merlot. It needs time. Right now the pieces are there, but not entirely pulled together. Winemaker, Dave Larsen, builds wines for the long term, everything is in proportion, and the fruit is ripe but never jammy. This is sleek and steely, with veins of iron, mineral, earth and tight red fruits. The oak influence is minimal. The vineyard is notable for the ageability of its wines. Cellar Selection. 92 points."
2008 Palisade - "Pure Merlot, though not labled as such, this is broadly fruity with a play of strawberry, hard cherry candy, and citrus. The grape sources - Champoux, Klipsun and Baccchus vineyards - are impeccable. Tannins are stiff enough to put a stop to the finish, and to suggest that some further bottle age is called for. 90 points."
2008 Commander Comet - "This is the second Syrah from Soos Creek again sourced from three excellent vineyards: Boushey, Riverbend and Lewis. Other bottlings from any of these vineyards will sell for far more; this is a real value. The tang is all fruit, with good natural acidity, plenty of snap. Cranberry, pomegranate and some darker notes of smoke, licorice and coffee threaded through. Excellent winemaking. 90 points."
Wine Advocate review by Jay Miller #197 Oct., 2011:
92 Points - 2008 Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
91 Points - 2008 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Bordeaux Blend
90 Points - 2008 Artist Series #8 Cab Franc/Cab/Merlot
90 Points - 2008 Palisade Merlot
89 Points - 2008 Sundance Bordeaux Blend
Our 2005 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard wine ranked #1 in Steve Tanzer tasting of 12 top Washington State red wines http://seattlest.com/2011/08/22/washington_wine_tasting_with_stephe.php
Who are Washington State's First Growth Wineries? http://www.winepressnw.com/2008/08/11/2121/who-should-be-washingtons-first.html
2007 Artist Series # 7 - Selected #29 by Sean Sullivan in "Seattle Met" magazine's list of 100 Best Washington Wines and #66 on the Seattle Times' list of Top 100 Washington State Wines in 2009 http://www.seattlemet.com/eat-and-drink/articles/best-wine-2010/4/