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Avennia Arnaut Syrah 2013

ID No: 442934
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Avennia Arnaut Syrah 2015

Avennia Arnaut Syrah is made of 100% Syrah

For our taste, no one grows finer Syrah in the state than Dick Boushey. We named this wine after the Provencal Troubadour Arnaut Daniel, who invented the Sestina poem form, thus creating a connection between our two flagship efforts.

Arnaut Tasting Note: a tribute to Syrah's feral heritage—black olive, earth, smoked minerals, and cured meat, along with a dollop of black fruits and lavender. The palate is super-concentrated with savory notes and ripe black fruits. The finish is long, complex, ruminating. Massive wine that remains light on its feet.

 


Review:

"A true blockbuster in the vintage is the 2015 Syrah Boushey Vineyard Arnaut. Coming from Dick Boushey’s vineyard in the Yakima Valley, it was completely destemmed (they put 15% of the stems back) and aged in primarily neutral barrels. It boasts an inky purple color to go with spectacular notes of black olives, scorched earth, peppery meats and black currants. With medium to full-bodied richness, gorgeous concentration and a big finish, it tastes like the essence of Syrah from Washington State. I love it! - Jeb Dunnuck"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #231, June 2017), 94-97 pts

   "From one of my favorite sites in Yakima Valley, the 2015 Syrah Arnaut Boushey Vineyard (100% Syrah aged 16 months in 15% new French oak) is inky purple-colored with a gorgeous bouquet of ripe black raspberries, plums, white pepper, spice, and scorched earth. It's deep, full-bodied, and beautifully concentrated, with fine tannin, and has a great finish, all making for a brilliant Washington State Syrah. It's going to keep for 10-15 years."

- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2018), 97 pts
 Wine Advocate: 97 97 Points
Avennia Sestina Red Blend 2013

Avennia Sestina Red Blend is made from 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 7% Cabernet Franc

The Sestina is a poetic form from Medieval France. Just as a contemporary poet can use an old form like the Sestina to express modern ideas, we use the traditional Bordeaux blend to make modern wines that express Washington fruit. Sestina is our vision for an old vine blend where the focus is on structure, balance, and complexity. This wine is designed for the cellar, but is enjoyable now.

Sestina: This wine is a blockbuster, with black currant, black raspberry, saddle leather, freshly tilled earth, vanilla, and violet on the nose. Exceedingly rich and balanced on the palate, with great poise and structure for long aging. The finish echoes with fresh black fruits, minerally touches, and floral notes.


"Bright medium ruby. Aromas of black cherry, mocha and licorice pastille. Attractive, tactile and sweet, with notes of chocolate and mocha but less fruit concentration than the 2012. Finishes with serious ripe tannins and lovely length. - Stephen Tanzer"
- Vinous (November 2015), 92 pts

"The most structured and backward of Chris's 2013s, the Cabernet Sauvignon dominated 2013 Sestina offers lots of minerality and crushed rock nuances to go with notes of wood smoke, lead pencil shavings, spice and crisp black fruits. It has a great mid-palate and good texture, but patience will be required. Give it 5-6 years and it should impress over the following decade or more.."
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #219, June 2015), 92-94+ pts

"More brains than brawn, the focus on this understated Cabernet Sauvignon-dominant blend is on old vines, with fruit coming mostly from early '70s and '80s Dionysus, Bacchus and Red Willow vineyard plantings. The earth, black cherry, peppercorn, currant and dried herb aromas start out tightly coiled. The flavors have laser-focused purity and a compelling sense of balance, with plenty of subtleties. It's all about nuance."

- Wine Enthusiast (July 2016), 93 pts

 

"Head winemaker, Chris Peterson, has crafted another stunner with this new 'Sestina' bottling. This wine is a blend of 73% Cabernet, 18% Merlot and 9% Cab Franc. The wine opens with gorgeous aromas of black cherry, black olive, blackberry preserves and dark chocolate. There is a real Bordelaise feel to this wine. The wine has flavors of crushed wild flowers, Turkish coffee, black olive, blackberry preserves, graphite, and an exceedingly long finish. There is a wonderful range of flavors and aromatics at play to this exceptional bottling. Try to wait at least another year before consuming. (Best 2017-2030).- OB"

- International Wine Report (October 2016), 94 pts

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 92 Wine Advocate: 94 Wine Enthusiast: 93 94 Points
Avennia Valery Red Blend 2013

 

Avennia Valery Red Blend is made from 86% Merlot and 14% Cabernet Franc

Valery is named for the patron saint of wine in the St. Emilion region that inspired it.
We started with old vine Merlot from a stony block in the heart of the Yakima Valley and added complex, aromatic Cabernet Franc from the Horse Heaven Hills. The result is a balanced, complex wine with the elegance and ethereal perfume that this blend of two of Washington’s best varietals are known for.

The nose on this wine is very perfumed, almost exotic with notes of fresh violets, red plum, winter mint, fresh herbs and crushed limestone qualities. The palate is poised and balanced, with red fruits and mocha powder encapsulated in limestone. The finish lingers delicately, with the Cabernet Franc asserting a light tobacco and herb note, giving depth. A compelling wine that will continue to unwind for 7-10 years in the cellar.


Review:

A blend of 86% Merlot and 14% Cabernet Franc, the 2013 Valery comes from 1986 plantings and sees moderate levels of new oak. Elegant, medium-bodied, supple and pretty, with perfumed notes of red plums, blackberry, spice-box and dried earth, it opens up nicely in the glass and has outstanding length. If it puts on weight in bottle, the score will be low.

Winemaker Chris Peterson calls 2012 an "Iconic vintage," adding that there were no heat spikes and that it's as good as, if not better than, 2007. I'm in complete agreement with him and loved these latest releases. Chris's wines always have firm, savory characters, yet back it up with serious mid-palate depth and concentration. These are all wines I can't wait to taste when they're at full maturity. Wine Advocate 90-92 Points

 Wine Advocate: 92
Product Description

Avennia Arnaut Syrah 2013 is made of 100% Syrah

For our taste, no one grows finer Syrah in the state than Dick Boushey. We named this wine after the Provencal Troubadour Arnaut Daniel, who invented the Sestina poem form, thus creating a connection between our two flagship efforts.

2012 Arnaut Tasting Note: a tribute to Syrah's feral heritage—black olive, earth, smoked minerals, and cured meat, along with a dollop of black fruits and lavender. The palate is super-concentrated with savory notes and ripe black fruits. The finish is long, complex, ruminating. Massive wine that remains light on its feet.

 


Review:

"This amazing Syrah was aged 16 months in 15% new French oak prior to bottling. The wine begins with aromas of white pepper, smoked pork shoulder, wild blackberry and mocha. There are flavors of blackberry pie, mocha, and black cherry with suggestions of roasted dates. Massive, masculine and tannic right now, this will age gracefully for at least another decade. This is every bit as good as the absolutely exceptional 2012. Give this at least an hour decant before enjoying. (Best 2017-2028) - OB"

- International Wine Report (April 2016), 95 pts

 

The 2013 Syrah Boushey Vineyard Arnaut is a rock star. Offering sensational purity in its meaty, dark fruits, olive brine, beef blood, currants and hints of violets, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, impressive concentration and a great finish, where it shows additional minerality. Coming from the two oldest blocks at Boushey Vineyard, this is a serious, age-worthy Syrah that I suspect will have a Northern Rhone-like evolution. Give it 2-3 years once released and drink it over the following decade or more.

Winemaker Chris Peterson calls 2012 an "Iconic vintage," adding that there were no heat spikes and that it's as good as, if not better than, 2007. I'm in complete agreement with him and loved these latest releases. Chris's wines always have firm, savory characters, yet back it up with serious mid-palate depth and concentration. These are all wines I can't wait to taste when they're at full maturity. - Wine Advocate 93-95 Points

 

 

Winery: Avennia

The Avennia Estate
Our goal is to make wines that evoke clarity: clarity of place, clarity of type, clarity of purpose.
We believe this is best expressed by using the classic French varietals and blends, with methods passed down over generations. We work within this context to allow Washington vineyards and terroirs to distinguish themselves. Terroir is only readily appreciable in a well-formed, harmonious wine. Structure is the backbone from which beauty can radiate.

Avennia is inspired by the Roman name for the city of Avignon, and signifies for us the heart of Old World winemaking. Our wines are designed to tease rather than flaunt; pique interest, not beg for attention. They stand for elegance, delicacy, purity. Our wines are made to enhance conversation, not dominate it, and will be a welcome guest at the table

 

 

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Arietta Hudson Vineyards Merlot 2012

Produced from the oldest planting of grapes on Lee Hudson’s heralded vineyard in the Napa Carneros, this latest offering of Arietta Merlot is one for the ages. Certainly a classic vintage, 2012 delivered fruit with brilliant purity, structure, and a strong sense of place. This unique—one might say historic—block of Merlot shows the best that this variety has to offer in California. Well-proportioned, fresh, flavorful, dark and complex, this wine is sure to impress lovers of Pomerol, and show that California is capable of producing Merlot wines with strength, yes, but also nuance, delicacy, and multiple layers of interest. This wine should continue to open and develop over the next decade, and age gracefully for another decade or two.


Review:

Arietta's 2012 Merlot emerges from the oldest vines on Lee Hudson's vineyard in Carneros. A dark, super-expressive wine, the Merlot is endowed with serious depth, power and structure. Brambly red fruit, smoke, tobacco and grilled herbs emerge from a surprisingly big, structured wine that should drink well for many, many years. -Antonio Galloni Vinous 95 points

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 95
Abeja Syrah Walla Walla Valley 2013

Complex and compelling, this estate-grown Syrah sends up smoky notes of cured meat, nougat and caramel. Black cherry fruit anchors the barrel notes, and it just gets more and more delicious as it winds its way across the palate. This demonstrates classy winemaking and perfect balance.

The fruit for this wine is grown at an elevation of 1310 feet on the grounds of the Winery. The higher elevation and the proximity to the Blue Mountains, gives this vineyard a longer, cooler ripening season than most other areas of the Walla Walla Appellation. The cooler site results in a style much like that of a classic Northern Rhone with complexity and balance without the concentration and higher alcohol levels of Syrah produced in warmer areas.

 


Review:

"Dark and smoky, with a lithe core of plum and spice emerging from under a layer of grippy tannins. The finish persists with insistence and intensity. Best after 2017. 182 cases made.- HS"
- Wine Spectator (October 15th 2015), 91 pts

"Aged in French oak, 30% new. Deep, saturated ruby. Wild, musky aromas of black raspberry, gunflint, spices and violet. Plush, tactile and sweet, offering surprising lift and definition to the flavors of dark raspberry, blackberry, smoked meat and violet face powder. Very expressive, fine-grained Syrah with subtle intensity and a lingering, ripely tannic finish. - Stephen Tanzer"- Vinous (November 2015), 91 pts

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Spectator: 91
Buty Rediviva of the Stones 2012

Both savory and sweet, this blend of syrah, cabernet sauvignon and mourvèdre displays lovely depth and density, with vivid floral, black raspberry, beach smoke and baking spice notes. In both the nose and on the palate, the syrah brings lush red fruit, with deep raspberry and black cherry layers. The cabernet adds high-toned floral elements and substantial mid-palate weight, as well as blackberry, currant and olive flavors, with the mourvèdre contributing to the wine’s tannic structure and spice elements of cinnamon, nutmeg and white pepper.

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Marcassin Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2013

Marcassin Sonoma Coast Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay. 


The 2013 Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard may be even better. Notes of caramelized citrus, hazelnut, apple blossom, lemon oil and orange marmalade are all present in this wine of dazzling aromatic and flavor dimension. It is full-bodied, again shows some wet pebbles (which I equate with minerality), vibrant acidity, and no real evidence of any oak. Much like the 2012, the finish goes on for 45+ seconds. This is another killer Chardonnay from Helen Turley and John Wetlaufer. -Wine Advocate 100 Points

What an extraordinary tasting this was at the Marcassin winery just north of Santa Rosa in Sonoma County. Just when you think the duo of Helen Turley and John Wetlaufer can’t make greater wines, they bowl over the taster with an array of exquisite quality that really must be tasted to be believed. Marcassin was probably California’s greatest Chardonnay after the famous Chalone winery fell from the pinnacle and onto hard times in the 1980s (and it has yet to rebound). Moreover, Marcassin set the bar for great Pinot Noir as well. And while both their Chardonnay and Pinot Noir have many competitors these days (from the likes of Harford Court, Mark Aubert, Kistler, Kongsgaard, DuMol, Thomas Brown, Peter Michael, Martinelli and Luc Morlet, to name a few), John Wetlaufer and Helen Turley remain the reigning geniuses of these two varietals in California. Certainly, their meticulous attention to detail in both the vineyard and in the winemaking and élevage account for the quality, but they were among the pioneers who saw the unlimited potential from the Sonoma Coast, now a relatively crowded neighborhood. This was a remarkable tasting that simply blew me away, and I have been following their wines since the first Marcassins were made in the early 1990s. By the way, any doubts about aging potential should be crushed immediately, as even in the most challenging vintages in California, Marcassin Chardonnays and Pinots have aged as well as, if not better than just about any grand cru white Burgundy. For example, 1995 and 1996 Chardonnays, particularly those from the Lorenzo Vineyard, are incredibly youthful and dynamic, and the Marcassin Estate Pinot Noir, even from vintages such as 1998, is simply amazing. The three Chardonnays tasted include two perfect wines. Perhaps the closest comparison is not to anything made in California, but a Corton-Charlemagne in a top vintage from the famous Jean François Coche-Dury.



 Wine Advocate: 100