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Lydian was established in 2019 as a new way to experience Washington wine. The team behind the fast-rising success of Avennia brings you another delicious wine that serves as an introduction to a lifetime of wine appreciation and a fresh take on Washington terroir.
In music, Lydian refers to a musical mode, or scale that is used as a building block for some of the world’s oldest and newest masterpieces. This happy sounding mode brings joy on its own, yet when molded and crafted by talented musicians can become a work of timeless art.
We believe Washington vineyards produce some of the finest building blocks in the world. With these grapes, and the collective talent behind those growing and working with them, Lydian wines can be as complex, nuanced, and profound as any jazz classic.
Lydian: a fun, fresh take on Washington Wine.
Full bodied and rich, with black cherry, currant, dark chocolate, and fresh herbs. Great Washington Cabernet character and structure.
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
Avennia Sestina Red Blend is made from 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, 5% 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.
A blend of 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Sestina comes from the Red Willow, Dionysus, and Bacchus vineyards and spent 20 months in 48% new French oak barrels. A beautiful, Saint-Julien-like bouquet of blackcurrants, cassis, violets, tobacco, and cedar gives way to a medium to full-bodied, concentrated, structured wine that builds incrementally on the palate, with ripe, velvety tannins, a stunning mid-palate, and a blockbuster of a finish. It's beautifully done, and while it drinks well today given its balance, purity, and texture, it's going to develop additional complexity with 3-5 years of bottle age and will have 20-25 years of overall longevity.
Jeb Dunnuck 96+ Points
Double Diamond by Schrader Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
A unique expression of the Napa Valley region from which it's born, Double Diamond Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 Red Wine is a dazzling and harmonious integration of decadent fruit, refined structure, and exotic spices. Made with quality red grapes from acclaimed Oakville vineyards known for highly diverse, resilient soils and an ideal blend of sun, cooling wind, and rain, this Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon red wine keeps company with some of the most sought-after cabernet sauvignon in the world. Aged 16 months in French oak barrels, this red California wine opens with intriguing aromas of Mexican chocolate, nutmeg, brambly fruit, spearmint, and violets. Each sip of this dark red wine is voluptuous, sleek, and inviting, with a silky tannin profile that provides a complex framework. A delicious red wine with rich palate notes of black currant, blackberry reduction, leather, crushed rock, and allspice, this 750 mL bottled wine can be enjoyed promptly. With three to five years in the cellar, this bottle of red wine will develop into an even more beautiful expression of the vintage. Crafted by renowned winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown in collaboration with Fred Schrader of Schrader Cellars, this aromatic red grape wine's rich taste brings out the best flavors of savory dishes like roast duck and lamb, grilled steaks with roasted mushrooms, and Tuscan meatballs. For best taste, store this cabernet sauvignon bottle of wine at room temperature then chill for 30 minutes before serving. Please enjoy our wines responsibly. 2020 Schrader Cellars, Oakville, CA
Double Diamond is sourced exclusively from a complement of prime vineyard estates. Sourced from the same famed vineyards as its beloved inspiration Schrader Cellars in Napa Valley’s world-renowned Oakville AVA, including our To Kalon Vineyard.
Readers looking to get a taste of the impeccable quality and style from Schrader at a more affordable price point would do well to check out the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Double Diamond. Coming all from Oakville, it has a classic Cabernet nose of black and blue fruits, green tobacco, cedar pencil, damp earth, and chocolate. It's not over the top and has beautiful varietal character as well as medium to full body, ripe yet present tannins, good overall freshness, and a great finish. This is beautifully done and well worth a case purchase. I'd lean toward drinking bottles over the coming 10-12 years, but I certainly wouldn't be surprised to see it evolve longer. It's a candidate for the best Napa Cabernet under $100.
-Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
A Schrader-related wine made by Thomas Rivers Brown, this 100% varietal wine is a showcase of the appellation, wide in appeal and bold, ripe red fruit. Sage, tar, cedar and pencil provide varietal complexity and contrast to the fruit; the tannin's are integrated yet still grippy. Enjoy best from 2028–2038.
-Wine Enthusiast 94 Points & Cellar Selection.
Duckhorn Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot, 0.8% Cabernet Franc, 0.2% Petit Verdot.
Far Niente Estate Bottled Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 93.3% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Petit Verdot, 2.3% Cabernet Franc, 0.5% Merlot and 0.1% Malbec.
An elegant perfume of mixed berries, baking spice, dried lavender and thyme open onto a full palate layered with expansive mixed berry, black tea, toasted oak and spice flavors. Focused and fresh, fine grained tannins support the wine throughout, while the finish is silky, long and lifted.
The wine combines select vineyards in Rutherford, Calistoga and St. Helena that complement our home in Oakville and embody our long-established house style. Cabernet has been a hallmark of Far Niente’s winemaking program beginning with its very first vintage in 1982. The marriage of these diverse vineyard sites has allowed us to craft our finest expression of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine exemplifies our nearly four decades of mastery in growing and making Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
This memorable Cabernet Sauvignon has small amounts of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec blended in. Aged 17 months in a majority of new French oak, it unfurls flavors of red fruit, dried herb and clove over a core of youthful tannin and spicy oak. Best from 2028–2038. Cellar Selection.
-Wine Enthusiast 95 Points
Including small amounts of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Malbec, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon sports a deep purple color as well as classic Cabernet notes of blackcurrants, new leather, tobacco leaf, flowers, and lead pencil. Beautifully done on the palate and made in a seamless, elegant style, it has a kiss of Pauillac in its nicely integrated acidity, ripe, building tannins, a touch of earthiness, and a great finish. It's not a blockbuster, just seamless and elegant, with a thrilling character. It should keep for 20+ years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
Force Majeure Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
The estate Cabernet Sauvignon is grown primarily along the southwest ridge of the vineyard. The vines produce small berries with bountiful flavor, concentration and intensity, but also a good degree of finesse, excellent structure and layers of complexity that will continue to develop during extended bottle aging for those who want to cellar and age their wines. The wine is powerful, elegant, full-bodied.
Bottled unfined and unfiltered.100% free run
Pumpovers and punch-downs, up to 45 day macerations
Native yeast, 5 day cold soaks
22 months in 75% new French oak barrels
Fermented in concrete and stainless closed top tanks.
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain Estate is much more dense, tannic, backward wine compared to the Walla Walla Estate release. Its deep purple/plum color is followed by a masculine bouquet of crushed rocks, tobacco, iodine, and lead pencil. This carries to a full-bodied Red Mountain Cabernet with gorgeous overall balance, ripe yet building tannins, an undeniable sense of minerality, and a blockbuster finish. Possessing a liquid rock-like minerality (it seems to have been filtered through a bed of rocks), it's mostly educational at this young age and deserves 4-5 years of bottle age. It should keep for 2-3 decades in cold cellars.
-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points
Force Majeure Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
Previously known as Grand Reve, Force Majeure has skyrocketed to the top of the pyramid in Washington State, in no small part due to their talented winemaker, Todd Alexander, who moved from Bryant Family in Napa to Washington State to focus on this estate. While the focus is on their Red Mountain Vineyard, they make a bevy of world-class wines from throughout the Columbia Valley. Anyone doubting the quality coming from Washington State these days owes it to themselves to try these wines.
Lots of blue fruits, cassis, violets, lead pencil, and tobacco notes emerge from the glass of the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley Estate, a magical, incredible Cabernet Sauvignon from the Rocks region of Walla Walla, as well as a perfect wine. It's deep purple/ruby-colored, full-bodied, deep, and opulent on the palate, with terrific elegance as well as a rich, complex earthiness that develops with time in the glass. However, it's not a classic Rocks wine, and the exotic funkiness is largely concealed behind classic Cabernet typicity. It reminds me of the 2009 Château Haut-Bailly with its rare mix of richness and power, and while it was brought up in almost all new French oak, you wouldn't know it by tasting it. Everything is perfectly balanced, it has silky tannins, a great mid-palate, and one heck of an impressive finish. It's a candidate for the wine of the vintage and should be snatched up by readers. Don't miss it.
-Jeb Dunnuck 100 Points
Michel Rolland, Pomerol vintner and consultant to many of the world's top wineries, teamed with Washington State wine visionary Allen Shoup to produce this limited release wine.
With its intense color and inviting aromas of dark berries, licorice, baking spice and a hint of smoke, the Pedestal is a bold wine that leaves a lasting impression. Dark fruit flavors integrated with sweetness from the barrel and richness from the tannins come together seamlessly, lingering across a structured mid-palate and lengthy finish.
Winemaking: Hand-harvested grapes were double-sorted to remove green material that might impart harsh tannins, then most of the lots were cold soaked to build richness and flavor before undergoing whole-berry fermentation in 55L upright French wood tanks. This, combined with gentle pump-overs throughout fermentation, enhanced the wine’s color, texture and mouthfeel. The finished wine was aged 22 months in 85% new French oak barrels.
"The 2015 Pedestal Merlot from Long Shadows is a blend of 75% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Petit Verdot aged 22 months in 85% new French oak barrels. Crème de cassis, wood smoke, scorched earth, and graphite characteristics all emerge from this rich, full-bodied, voluptuous beauty that has more mid-palate depth and richness than any other Merlot made in the state. With ample tannin, it will benefit from a year or three and keep for 15. It's a gorgeous wine."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2018), 96 pts
Number 83 in Wine Enthusiast Top 100 Wines of 2018
Charles Krug Peter Mondavi Family Vintage Selection Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Vintage Selection has a deep garnet-purple color and features exuberant notes of crushed black cherries, mulberries and blackcurrant cordial with touches of unsmoked cigars, menthol, yeast extract and pencil shavings. Full-bodied, concentrated and opulent in the mouth, it has a solid line of plush tannins and plenty of backbone freshness to lift the generous fruit to a long fruity finish.
-Wine Advocate 95 Points