First impression is that this is a rather sharp, edgy, oaky young Merlot, without the broadly appealing fruit character that generally differentiates Washington Merlot from its Cabernets. That said, it offers up some nice, toasty flavors from the barrels, a mix of coffee, buttered nuts and mocha streaks running through the extended finish. As the fruit comes up it shows tart and sleek notes of pie cherry and wild raspberry, set against substantial acids.
Paul Gregutt is a Contributing Editor for Wine Enthusiast magazine, a founding member of the magazine’s Tasting Panel, and reviews the wines of Oregon and Canada. The author of the critically-acclaimed Washington Wines & Wineries—The Essential Guide, he consulted on the Pacific Northwest entries in current versions of The World Atlas of Wine and The Oxford Companion to Wine.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.