C.R. SANDIDGE WINES

Library Wines

Available Library Wines

CR Sandidge Wines has been squirrelling away some of our favorite vintages to add bottle age and allow concentration of characteristics by tempering those fantastic tannins and acids that aid in the gripping length on the palate and fresh, floral aromatics.

For your pleasure this Holiday Season, we are re-releasing a very limited supply of our Library Wine selections.

  • Whistle Punk Red Blend: 2012, 2013, 2014
  • Caris Red Blend: 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016!
  • Tri*Umph Red Blend: 2013, 2014, 2015
  • Devil’s Smoke Stack No.11
  • KISS Dessert Wine 2012

Now is the time to enjoy your favorite aged wines and to share the warmth and joy of a perfect glass/bottle of award winning wines authored by Ray Sandidge.

Contact our tasting room today for specific prices, product inventory availability and gift selections. We are shipping these glorious wines to our guests this Holiday 2020 season FREE!!!
Call us 509.682.3704

Tasting Notes

2013 CARIS

The Vintage:  2013 was a very fine growing season.  It was a tad warmer and more extended yet than the 2012 vintage.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  

The Vineyards:  This superb red wine was crafted using grapes from a number of outstanding Washington State AVA.  The Malbec and Merlot were harvested from the Yakima Valley AVA region.  The grower was none other than Bob Buoy.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is not only a great grower, he is also very fortunate… some might even say lucky.  The site where he decided to plant vineyards is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is simply amazing for growing serious red wine grapes varieties.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Cabernet Franc was harvested from a Walla Walla AVA site.  This particular site is located on a deep bed of loess soil.  Loess soils are the result of thousands of years of soil particles being deposited by the wind.  Some loess soils in the Walla Walla area are known to possess over 300 feet of top soil!

The Winemaking:  All fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 60 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit over a twelve day period.  Each day during the fermentation process, every bin was manually punched down twice each day.  After pressing the must and fermenting to dryness, the young wines were racked to new French oak barrels.  Malo-lactic fermentation was permitted in full to present a wine with a rich – supple mouth feel.  These wines were aged in barrel over a 19 month period.  

The Wine:  Be prepared to go weak in the knees.  Once again, the tradition of crafting a very elegant red possessing excellent fruit and barrel complexities is present with this rendition of Caris.  Bright red – black cherry, blueberry and a slight note of cassis are matched perfectly with caramel, toasted coconut and graham cracker barrel flavors and aromas.  The mouthfeel is luscious and persistent.  This wine may be aged a good 8 to 10 years.  Enjoy with Eggplant Parmigiana, grilled filet mignon or a rich beef stew.  I would recommend you decant this wine a good thirty minutes prior to consuming if opened before 2017.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.4%       pH: 3.58        Acidity: 5.6g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  51% Merlot, 34% Malbec & 15% Cabernet Franc Cases Produced: 307

2014 CARIS 

The Vintages:  The 2014 vintage was a growing season any winemaker would be happy with.  I personally rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Malbec and Merlot performed magnificently.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and decent acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2014 Caris.

The Vineyards:  Our 2014 Caris was crafted using grapes from a single excellent Washington State vineyard.  Namely, the Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is refreshing to work with as he is totally dedicated to growing superb quality grapes.  His vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grapes varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  

The Winemaking:  As is customary, all fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over a thirteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading of 10, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-two months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  ELEGANT……. alluring, soft and supple are the appropriate adjectives to describe the fine wine.  Big red and black fruit flavors and aromas are present up front.  A slight hint of new leather mingles with vanilla bean and toasted coconut compliments of the French oak barrel aging.  The mouthfeel is full bodied and just keeps giving long after passing over your palate.  This wine may be aged a good 6 to 9 years.  Enjoy with the finest blue cheeses or salted – roasted nuts.  Grilled or pan – seared salmon finished with a nice currant or huckleberry sauce is a good paring too.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.5%       pH: 3.51        Acidity: 5.3g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  60% Malbec & 40% Merlot Cases Produced: 297

2015 CARIS 

The Vintages:  By most accounts, the 2015 vintage was a growing season winemakers were quite pleased with.  I rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers hung decent amounts of fruit on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and decent acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2015 Caris.

The Vineyards:  2015 Caris was made using grapes from two excellent Washington State vineyards.  The Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region supplied the Malbec and Merlot fruit.  Bob’s vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Cabernet Franc fruit was harvested from the Lake Chelan AVA vineyard Amos Rome.  This vineyard site possesses phenomenal potential.  Decent south – southwest slope, deep sand – gravel soils and proper elevation make for an excellent future.  Grower Tom Pettigrew is committed to growing some of our regions finest grapes.  Athena and I look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with Amos Rome!

The Winemaking:  As is customary, all fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over a twelve day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 6 and 10, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Eighteen months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  Richly scented – ripe red and black fruits are the adjectives needed to describe this fine wine.  Red and black cherry notes combine with those of ripe strawberry and raspberry.  Vanilla bean and toasted coconut compliments of the French oak barrel aging add additional aromas and flavors. The mouthfeel is full bodied.  Fine grained tannins balance out the luscious fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 4 to 6 years.  A savory meal centered around a stew made from range fed buffalo, sautéed onions, mushrooms and wild rice is a good paring.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.5%       pH: 3.49        Acidity: 5.4g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  42% Malbec, 36% Merlot & 22% Cabernet Franc Cases Produced: 298

2016 CARIS 

The Vintages:  2016 was a splendid growing season.  I rated it a solid 9.0 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers really dialed in the proper amounts of fruit left on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and modest acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2016 Caris.

The Vineyards:  2016 Caris was made using grapes from two excellent Washington State vineyards.  The Phinney Hill vineyard located in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA region supplied the Cabernet Sauvignon fruit.  Phinney Hill is located in the middle third of its AVA.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Deep loam top soil exists prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Merlot fruit was harvested from the Lake Chelan AVA vineyard Amos Rome.  This vineyard site possesses phenomenal potential.  Decent south – southwest slope, deep sand – gravel soils and proper elevation make for an excellent future.  Grower Tom Pettigrew is committed to growing some of our regions finest grapes.  As he continues to tinker with each grape variety grown on his site, quality will only get better and better.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was meticulously handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 51 – 88 degrees Fahrenheit over a twelve to fourteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 4 and 6, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Eighteen months of barrel aging in new French and American oak barrels was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  The color is purple – red.  Lovely- ripe red and black fruits are found in abundance on the nose.  One will primarily detect blackberry, raspberry and red currant notes.  Vanilla bean and toasted coconut compliments of the French and American oak barrel aging kicked in additional aromas and flavors. The mouthfeel is a very silky medium plus body.  Fine grained tannins balance out the luscious fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 6 to 8 years.  A great match with warm gyros stuffed with succulent grilled lamb, peppers and onions.  Top with a spicy tzatziki sauce.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.8%       pH: 3.63        Acidity: 4.9g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Lake Chelan

Blend:  31% Malbec, 31% Merlot 31% Cabernet Franc & 7% Cabernet Sauvignon Cases Produced: 294

2013 Tri*Umph

The Vintage: 2013 was a very fine growing season.  It was a tad warmer and more extended yet than the 2012 vintage.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  

The Vineyards:  Our 2013 Tri*Umph was crafted using grapes from a number of outstanding Washington State AVA.  The Malbec was harvested from the Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is refreshing to work with as he is totally dedicated to growing superb quality grapes.  His vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is simply amazing for growing serious red wine grapes varieties.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Cabernet Sauvignon was picked from the Dineen Vineyard which is located in the Yakima Valley AVA just north of the city of Zillah, Washington. The Petit Verdot was harvested from a Walla Walla AVA site.  This particular site is located on a slope possessing some stone and a deep bed of loess soil.  Loess soils are the result of thousands of years of soil particles being deposited by the wind.  Some loess soils in the Walla Walla area are known to possess over 300 feet of top soil! 

The Winemaking:  All fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 55 – 87 degrees Fahrenheit over a nineteen day period.  Each day during the fermentation process, every bin was manually punched down twice each day.  After pressing the must and fermenting to dryness, the young wines were racked to new French oak barrels.  Malo-lactic fermentation was permitted in full to present a wine with a rich – supple mouth feel.  These wines were aged in barrel over a 20 month period.  

The Wine:  Once again, our time honored tradition of crafting a muscular yet very elegant red possessing excellent fruit and barrel complexities is present in the 2013 Tri*Umph.  Tree ripe black cherry, blueberry and a slight note of blackberry match perfectly with caramel, toasted coconut and espresso coffee barrel flavors and aromas.  The mouthfeel is definitely full bodied and deliciously persistent.  This wine may be aged a good 8 to 10 years.  Enjoy with grilled beef steak or a fillet of grilled salmon which has been seasoned with Thailand, China or Japan in mind.  I would recommend you decant this wine a good thirty minutes prior to consuming if opened before 2016.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.5%       pH: 3.57        Acidity: 5.5g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Petit Verdot & 10% Malbec  Cases Produced: 214

2014 Tri*Umph 

The Vintages:  The 2014 vintage was a growing season any winemaker would be happy with.  I personally rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Malbec and Merlot performed magnificently.  Petite Verdot fruit from warmer areas such as Walla Walla and Wahluke Slope is showing very well too.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and decent acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2014 TriUmph.

The Vineyards:  Our 2014 TriUmph was crafted using grapes from multiple vineyard sources.  The Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region supplied the Malbec and Merlot.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is refreshing to work with as he is totally dedicated to growing superb quality grapes.  His vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grapes varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Petite Verdot hails from several Walla Walla area vineyards.

The Winemaking:  As is customary, all fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over a thirteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading of 10, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-four months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  Brimming with bold raspberry – black fruit flavors and aromas, the 2014 TriUmph packs quite a punch.  The addition of a bit of toasted coconut and caramel compliments of all that new French oak added yet more to this wines impressive stature.   Tannins are there and require a few years to tame.  For those not willing to cellar this wine a while, definitely decant a good 45 minutes prior to enjoying.  Should one wish to deviate from beef steak, TriUmph will pare well with marinated – grilled eggplant served with wild rice risotto.  Or, you who know me guessed it……… sautéed duck breast finished with a port reduction sauce.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.7%       pH: 3.59       Acidity: 5.3g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  67% Malbec, 22% Petite Verdot & 11% Merlot Cases Produced: 205

2015 TRI*UMPH 

The Vintages:  By most accounts, the 2015 vintage was a growing season winemakers were quite pleased with.  I rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers hung decent amounts of fruit on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and decent acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2015 Tri*Umph.

The Vineyards:  2015 Tri*Umph was made using grapes from two solid Washington State vineyards.  The Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region supplied the Malbec and Merlot fruit.  Bob’s vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Cabernet Sauvignon fruit was harvested from the Rattlesnake Hills AVA vineyard Dineen.  This warm vineyard site possesses great potential.  Deep sand – gravel soils and proper elevation make for an excellent combination to grow very high quality fruit.  to a long and prosperous relationship with Amos Rome!

The Winemaking:  As is customary, all fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 60 – 89 degrees Fahrenheit over a nineteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 6 and 10, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-two months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  This wine is elegant and supple.  Ripe red and black fruits are the adjectives needed to describe the fruit components of this fine wine.  Red and black cherry notes combine with those of ripe red currants and raspberry.  French oak barrels toss in flavors and aromas of vanilla bean, coffee and toasted coconut. The mouthfeel is full bodied.  Fine grained tannins compliment the luscious fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 4 to 6 years.  A paring with white bean and sausage stew or braised beef short ribs should do the trick.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.6%       pH: 3.54        Acidity: 5.6g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  50% Malbec, 38% Cabernet Sauvignon & 12% Merlot Cases Produced: 180

2016 Tri*Umph 

The Vintages:  2016 was a splendid growing season.  I rated it a solid 9.0 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers really dialed in the proper amounts of fruit left on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and modest acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2016 Tri*Umph.

The Vineyards:  Our 2016 Tri*Umph was made using grapes from three Washington State vineyards.  The Phinney Hill vineyard located in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA region supplied the Cabernet Sauvignon fruit.  Phinney Hill is located in the middle third of its AVA.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Deep loam top soil exists prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Merlot fruit was harvested from the Lake Chelan AVA vineyard Amos Rome.  This vineyard site possesses phenomenal potential.  Decent south – southwest slope, deep sand – gravel soils and proper elevation make for an excellent future.  Grower Tom Pettigrew is committed to growing some of our regions finest grapes.  As he continues to tinker with each grape variety grown on his site, quality should only get better and better.  The Malbec came from none other than Bob Buoy.  His vineyard is located in the Yakima Valley AVA just northwest of the town of Benton City.  Shallow clay – sand topsoil some two feet deep on average lies above fractured calcareous basalt.  Bob is one of our state’s top growers.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was meticulously handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 51 – 88 degrees Fahrenheit over a twelve to fourteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 4 and 6, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-two months of barrel aging in new French and American oak barrels was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  The color is a lovely purple – red.  Ripe red and black fruits are found in abundance on the nose.  The main players are; blackberry, raspberry and maraschino cherry notes.  Vanilla bean and toasted coconut compliments of the French and American oak barrel aging add additional aromas and flavors. The mouthfeel is incredibly silky.  The body is what I would rate medium – plus.  Fine grained tannins balance out the luscious fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 6 to 8 years.  Suggested pairing would be with a platter of fine pate’, salami, sturdy cheeses and a loaf of beautiful – chewy artisan bread.  Athena and I thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy one of our finest winemaking efforts!! 

% Alcohol: 14.7%       pH: 3.62        Acidity: 5.5g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  56% Malbec, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon & 11% Merlot Cases Produced: 198

2012 Whistle Punk

The Vintage:  The 2012 growing season was a vast improvement over the previous two seasons.  It was relatively warm from spring through the end of October.  No mid – October frost or rains which was the case in 2010.  All in all, a very decent vintage.  The grapes utilized to make this wine were harvested from the first through the fourth week of October.

The Vineyards: Our 2012 Whistle Punk just seems to keep improving year after year.  This rendition is a masterful blend of; Syrah, Petite Sirah, Malbec and Merlot.  100% of the fruit was grown in the Yakima Valley.  The Rivers Bend Vineyard supplied the Syrah.  The Buoy Vineyard kicked in the superb Malbec and Merlot fruit.  Verhey Vineyard was our source for the Petite Sirah grapes.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was hand – picked, sorted and destemmed and crushed.  The winemaker’s go to yeast strain EC1118 (better known as Pris de Mousse) was utilized for all fermentations.  Once dry, the young wines were racked to new and once used French oak barrels.  75% of the barrels were new.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to run its course to completion for each wine.   All wines were aged 21 months in barrel.  Once the blend was assembled in tank, a tight filtration was conducted at bottling.  The blend is as follows:  51% Syrah, 22% Petite Sirah, 17% Merlot and 10% Malbec.

The Wine:  What an amazing wine!  A deep (and I mean cosmic black hole dark) purple color foretells the massive potential this wine possesses.  The fruit presentation features; ripe currants, blackberries and blueberries.  The French oak barrels tossed in caramel, sweet vanilla bean and toasted coconut.  The body is without question FULL.  The tannins are a tad up front yet civil.  The acidity is just perfect providing needed structure and texture wrapping around the wines fruit core.  A solid eight to ten years of cellar potential are possible with this fine dinner wine.  With the 2012 Whistle Punk, I feel I have finally dialed in what this blend should represent on an annual basis.  Enjoy.  When paired with richly seasoned beef, lamb or a juicy – grilled jerk pork………..I know you will.

% Alcohol:  14.4%     pH:  3.60      Acidity:  5.5g/liter     Residual Sugar:  2g/liter     AVA:  Columbia Valley

Case Production:  382

2013 Whistle Punk

The Vintage:  2013 was a very fine growing season.  It was a tad warmer and more extended yet than the 2012 vintage.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Malbec and Merlot did experience very uneven ripening vine to vine.  This made for a somewhat challenging harvest.  All other varieties ripened uniformly.  

The Vineyards:  Our 2013 Whistle Punk was crafted using grapes from a number of excellent Washington State vineyards.  The Malbec, Merlot and Petit Sirah were harvested from the Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is refreshing to work with as he is totally dedicated to growing superb quality grapes.  His vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is without question amazing for growing serious red wine grapes varieties.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Syrah grapes were supplied by the always excellent Rivers Bend Vineyard.  

The Winemaking:  All fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over a twenty two day period.  Once the yeast fermentation was complete, the wines were transferred to new French Oak barrels.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to take place in the barrels using native bacteria.  After twenty – two months of barrel aging, the wines were racked from barrel and bottled.  This wine was tightly filtered at bottling.

The Wine:  Once again, our tradition of crafting a masculine red possessing excellent fruit and barrel complexities is offered in the 2013 Whistle Punk.  Raisined black cherry and a slight note of blackberry match perfectly with caramel, toasted coconut and espresso coffee barrel flavors and aromas.  The mouthfeel is full bodied and persists for quite a while after passing over your palate.  This wine may be aged a good 8 to 10 years.  Enjoy with grilled beef steak or platter full of BBQ pork.  I would recommend you decant this wine a good thirty minutes prior to consuming if opened before 2016.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.8%       pH: 3.57        Acidity: 5.4g/liter     Residual Sugar: 4g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  44% Syrah, 33% Malbec, 14% Petit Sirah & 9% Merlot  Cases Produced: 548

2014 Whistle Punk 

The Vintages:  The 2014 vintage was a growing season any winemaker would be happy with.  I personally rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Grape growers were able to hang decent amounts of fruit and have the grapes fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Petit Sirah, Syrah, Malbec and Merlot performed magnificently.  The short version is, what a great vintage to make wine from.  

The Vineyards:  Our 2014 Whistle Punk was crafted using grapes from multiple vineyard sources.  The Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region supplied the Petit Sirah, Malbec and Merlot.  Bob is one of our State’s finest.  He is refreshing to work with as he is totally dedicated to growing superb quality grapes.  His vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grapes varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Syrah fruit was supplied by the Rivers Bend Vineyard.  This is also a Yakima Valley AVA site.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grape clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The must in each fermentation bin was “punched down” twice daily to assist in color and flavor extraction from the grape skins.  The yeast fermentation proceeded at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over a nine to fourteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 6 and 9, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-five months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  This rendition of Whistle Punk is a beauty.  Very complex.  Very supple.  The toasted coconut and caramel compliments of all that new French oak knit nicely around a luscious black and red fruit core.   For those not willing to cellar this wine until March – April of 2017, definitely decant a good 45 minutes prior to enjoying.  A homemade pizza topped with cheeses, sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, arugula and sun-dried tomatoes would hit the spot when served with our 2014 Whistle Punk. We thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.8%       pH: 3.56       Acidity: 5.4g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  35% Syrah, 30% Malbec, 24% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon & 4% Petit Sirah

Cases Produced: 570

2015 WHISTLE PUNK 

The Vintages:  The 2015 vintage was a growing season winemakers were quite pleased with in general.  I rated it a solid 8.5 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers hung decent amounts of fruit on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  From the Yakima Valley, the grape varieties Syrah, Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and decent acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was crafted into our 2015 Whistle Punk.

The Vineyards:  2015 Whistle Punk was made using grapes from two excellent Washington State vineyards.  The Bob Buoy vineyard located in the Yakima Valley AVA region supplied the Petite Sirah, Malbec and Merlot fruit.  Bob’s vineyard site is just west of the town of Benton City.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Only 18 – 24 inches of clay loam top soil exist prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The vineyard growth is easily manipulated as it is easy to water stress.  The Syrah fruit was harvested from the Yakima Valley AVA vineyard Rivers Bend.  This vineyard site is situated right beside and to the east of the Buoy Vineyard.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit over an eighteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 6 and 10, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-five months of barrel aging in 100% new French oak truly complimented the wines flavor and aroma profile.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  Deeply scented – ripe red and black fruits aromas burst forth from this wine.  Ripe blackberry notes combine with those of ripe plums and raspberries.  Vanilla bean and caramel compliments of the French oak barrel aging add additional highlights. This wine is full bodied.  Fine grained tannins balance out the luscious fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 6 to 8 years.  A meal centered around comfort foods such as a stew made from organic potatoes, carrots, sautéed onions, lots of mushrooms and bit of wild rice is a good paring.  Thank-you for your friendship and support.  Enjoy!! 

% Alcohol: 14.5%       pH: 3.57        Acidity: 5.5g/lite Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  40% Syrah, 27% Malbec & 17% Merlot & 16% Petite Sirah Cases Produced: 498

2016 Whistle Punk

The Vintages:  2016 was a splendid growing season.  I rated it a solid 9.0 on a scale of 0 to 10.  Our grape growers really dialed in the proper amounts of fruit left on their vines which were able to fully ripen come September and October.  The grape varieties Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot performed exceptionally well.  Great – ripe red and black berry flavors, fine grained tannins and modest acidity were what characterizes the fruit which ultimately was utilized in our 2016 Whistle Punk.

The Vineyards:  Whistle Punk was made using grapes from three Washington State vineyards.  The Phinney Hill vineyard located in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA region supplied the Cabernet Sauvignon fruit.  Phinney Hill is located in the middle third of its AVA.  The terroir is amazing for growing red wine grape varieties possessing impressive depth and structure.  Deep loam top soil exists prior to encountering fractured calcareous basalt and finally basalt bedrock.  The Merlot fruit was harvested from the Lake Chelan AVA vineyard Amos Rome.  Decent south – southwest slope, deep sand – gravel soils and proper elevation make for an excellent future.  The Malbec and Petite Sirah came from none other than Bob Buoy.  His vineyard is located in the Yakima Valley AVA just northwest of the town of Benton City.  Shallow clay – sand topsoil some two feet deep on average lies above fractured calcareous basalt.  Bob is one of our state’s top growers.

The Winemaking:  All fruit was carefully handpicked into ½ ton bins.  Within hours, the fruit arrived at the winery to ensure the highest quality possible.  All of the grapes were sorted by hand to glean out any damaged fruit or MOG (material other than grapes) such as leaves.  The grapes clusters were destemmed and the berries lightly crushed into one – ton fermentation bins. The yeast fermentation proceeded on the grape skins at temperatures ranging from 56 – 88 degrees Fahrenheit over a twelve to fourteen day period.  Once the yeast fermentation reached a Brix reading between 4 and 6, the wine was pressed off.  The malo – lactic fermentation was permitted to occur while the wine was in barrel utilizing native ML bacteria.  Twenty-three months of barrel aging in new French and American oak barrels was deemed perfect.  The wine was tightly filtered at bottling.  

The Wine:  The color is a striking purple – red.  The nose offers blackberry, raspberry aromas plus a light clove note.  Vanilla bean and toasted coconut compliments of the French and American oak barrel aging add additional aromas and flavors. The mouthfeel is very soft – almost plush.  The body is what I would rate medium – plus.  Fine grained tannins are in sync with the generous fruit.  This wine may be aged a good 6 to 8 years.  Suggested pairing would be with a delicious plate of eggplant parmesan or grilled lamb kebab seasoned with Moroccan spices (marjoram, cumin, coriander and Harissa paste), rice and dates.  Athena and I thank-you for your friendship and support.  We hope you enjoy our winemaking efforts!! 

% Alcohol: 14.7%       pH: 3.59        Acidity: 5.4g/liter     Residual Sugar: 2g/liter      AVA: Columbia Valley

Blend:  45% Merlot, 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Malbec & 13% Petite Sirah Cases Produced: 498