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winter 2008-2009 WinePressNW

"The final production shows aromas of blackberries, Bing cherries, canned plums, a pinch of mint and black pepper. Lightly toasted oak doesn't get in the way of the layers of flavors, leading with blackberries and black cherry cola on the mid-palate."

Trust Cellar 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon. Columbia Valley, 180 cases, 13.7% alc., $36.

Outstanding! What an all-star cast of vineyards for your first vintage of Cab. Va Piano, Champoux and Lewis contribute the Cab, while Pepper Bridge Merlot provided the backup (25%). The final production shows aromas of blackberries, Bing cherries, canned plums, a pinch of mint and black pepper. Lightly toasted oak doesn't get in the way of the layers of flavors, leading with blackberries and black cherry cola on the mid-palate. Subtle tannins and smooth chocolate as the curtain drops make this delicious and easy drinking.

Trust Cellars 2006 Syrah. Columbia Valley, 216 cases, 14.5% alc., $28.

Outstanding! One of the better stories in Walla Walla is how Steve Brooks quit his job at CNN and moved his famil to become a winemaker. Like most journalists, he's a quick study. This product of just his second vintage comes from Lewis, Minnick and Portteus vineyards. Our reporter's notebook shows descriptors such as black raspberries, cherry juice, green olives, cedar, moist earth and just a breath of French oak. The structure is smooth with youthful exuberance on the midpalate with bright tannins and Red Vine licorice in the finish.

Trust Cellars 2007 Cabernet Franc Rosé. Columbia Valley, 109 cases, 13.7% alc., $16.

Recommended. Steve Brooks tapped into Bacchus Vineyard for his delicious blush with an early hint of the off-dry structure i aromas of cotton canddy, cherry taffy, boysenberries and a hint of bubble gum. Cherrries, marionberries and Bing cherries make for a luscious, round and sweet midpalate that's capped by a nice burst of huckleberry acidity.