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Review of Washington Wines, 4/2011

"The saturation continues with a gush of blueberry juice, and is imbued with tones of dried orange peel, cinnamon bark and pencil shavings on a spicy, chewy sweet-dry tannin finish."

2008 Syrah, Columbia Valley: 18.5/20 points.

This was released later than the Walla Walla Valley bottling. Deep purple colored, it emits an intense nose of blackberry, cherry and blueberry, with scents of rose petals, lavender and a hint of violets. The flavors are ripe and concentrated, underlain with chocolate, black licorice and minerally earth. The saturation continues with a gush of blueberry juice, and is imbued with tones of dried orange peel, cinnamon bark and pencil shavings on a spicy, chewy sweet-dry tannin finish.

2008 Syrah, Walla Walla Valley: 18.5/20 points.

This new release displays a deep ruby color and a sultry, sexy nose of wild blackberry, raspberry and cassis with scents of tobacco, rubbed sage, incense and garrigue (French lavender). The red and blue fruits are vivid and chewy, intermixed with notes of bittersweet chocolate, licorice, coffee grounds, loamy earth, graphite and minerals.  Sensations of dried roasted berries and nuts emerge on the back, followed by a sweet-dry tannin finish that is dusted with ground spices (clove, nutmeg and cinnamon).

2010 Cabernet Franc Rose: 17.5+/20 points.

Steve Brooks makes a consistently fine rose. It displays a pale salmon color and a fresh, ripe nose of strawberry, raspberry, sandalwood and orange peel. On the palate, the wine is bright and flavorful, picking up considerable skin extract (from extended contact before pressing off). The back picks up a bit of tangerine juice on the way to a lively dry finish.