William Kelley - 29/06/2018
About this WINE
Washington State is the United State’s second-largest wine region, second only to California. The first grapes were planted here in 1825, though it wasn’t until 1960 that the first commercial vineyards were planted.
The state has 20 American Viticultural Areas (AVAs). The first, Yakima Valley, was established in 1983. Columbia Valley AVA is the largest; the region is shared between Washington and neighboring Oregon. Other notable AVAs include Walla Walla Valley, Puget Sound, Red Mountain, and Horse Heaven Hills.
Washington’s largest producer, Chateau Ste. Michelle was founded in 1967. Today, there are over 1,000 wineries in the state, along with over 400 winegrowers. Among the leading producers here are Cayuse Vineyards, Horsepower Vineyards, and Hors Catégorie Vineyards.
The most famous red wine grape in the world and one of the most widely planted.
It is adaptable to a wide range of soils, although it performs particularly well on well-drained, low-fertile soils. It has small, dusty, black-blue berries with thick skins that produce deeply coloured, full-bodied wines with notable tannins. Its spiritual home is the Médoc and Graves regions of Bordeaux where it thrives on the well-drained gravel-rich soils producing tannic wines with piercing blackcurrant fruits that develop complex cedarwood and cigar box nuances when fully mature.
The grape is widely planted in California where Cabernet Sauvignon based wines are distinguished by their rich mixture of cassis, mint, eucalyptus and vanilla oak. It is planted across Australia and with particular success in Coonawarra where it is suited to the famed Terra Rossa soil. In Italy barrique aged Cabernet Sauvignon is a key component in Super Tuscans such as Tignanello and Sassicaia, either on its own or as part of a blend with Sangiovese.