Stephen Brook's 10 best Washington State Bordeaux blends plus others not available in the UK

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  • Friday 6 January 2012

Decanter's contributing editor Stephen Brook reveals his top 10 Washington State Bordeaux Blends in this month's issue of the magazine. In addition are six others not currently available in the UK.

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Andrew Will: Sorella 2007 
(72% CS, 10% Merlot, 15% CF, 3% PV).

Rich intense blackcurrant and mint nose. Suave, full-bodied, and generous, with powerful tannins and balancing spiciness. Long. 18.5pts/20
Price: £51.00 Berry Bros & Rudd
Drink: Now-2025
Alc: 14.3%

L’Ecole No 41: 2008 Perigee 2008 (55% CS, 26% Merlot, 11% CF, 4% each Malbec and PV).
 
Reserved black fruits nose. Plump, svelte, and very concentrated, yet lifted and fresh, with excellent balance and complexity, with fine tannins and exceptional length. 18.5pts/20
Price: £47.99 Handford
Drink: 2012-2018
Alc: 14.5%

Col Solare 2006 (72% CS, 19% Merlot, 4% CF, 3% PV, 2% Syrah ).

Dense oaky nose, with aromas of black fruits, cherries, and coffee. Suave with ample sweetness of fruit, not especially weighty but very elegant, with a long, cool, chocolatey finish. 18pts/20
Price: £55.30 Slurp
Drink: Now-2024
Alc: 14.5%

Chateau Ste Michelle: Canoe Ridge Merlot 2006

Plums and mulberries on the nose, with ample toasty oak. Suave and luxurious, has intensity and drive, and a long seamless finish.  17.5pts/20
Price: £18.95 Slurp
Drink: Now-2018
Alc: 14.5%

Northstar: Merlot, Columbia Valley 2007
(75% Merlot, 30% CS, 5% PV).

Rich, spicy, liquorice and black cherry nose, has power and presence. Sleek and concentrated, with fine texture and freshness as well as grip, balanced tannins, peppery and long. 17.5pts/20
Price: £32.63 for the 2005 at Everywine.co.uk
Drink: Now-2020
Alc: 14.7%

Powers: Coyote Vineyard Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2007

Dense cassis nose, quite tarry and oaky. Very rich and full-bodied, lavish and opulent, with firm tannins, and flavours of dark fruits, cloves and chocolate. Long.  17.5pts/20
Price: £26 for the 2006 at World Wine Agencies and St Martin Vinters
Drink: Now-2022
Alc: 14%

Gramercy: Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley 2008

Fragrant cherry and red fruits nose. Medium-bodied and supple yet quite concentrated, fresh and balanced, with a slight austerity on the finish. 17pts/20
Price: £29 Flint
Drink: 2012-2020
Alc: 13.9%

Leonetti: Merlot 2007

Discreet black cherry nose. Plump and concentrated, has power without showing any jamminess; long spicy finish. 17pts/20
Price: £47.83 Noel Young
Drink: Now-2018
Alc:14.3%

Woodward Canyon: Artists Series Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Toasty, smoky, savoury nose, opulent. Fleshy and full-bodied, with sweet spicy black fruits, structured yet limpid, with a long chocolatey finish. 17pts/20
Price: £41.00 for thr 2004 at Wine Treasury
Drink: 2012-2020
Alc: 14.5%

Charles Smith: ‘Velvet Devil’ Merlot 2009

Sweet, heady, ripe cherry nose.  Medium-bodied, gentle and has charm, light tannins, delicious and bright. 16.5pts/20
Price: £9.91 Bibendum
Drink: Now 
Alc: 13.5%

Six other Washington State Bordeaux blends not currently available in the UK:

Betz Family Wineries: Clos de Betz 2007 (62% Merlot, 20% CS, 10% Malbec, 5% CF, 3% PV).

Ripe fleshy blackberry nose, with sweet oak. Sumptuous and super-ripe but minty and lively too, concentrated and fleshy, with backbone, spice, and good length. 18pts/20
Price: N/A UK. $50 betzfamilywinery.com
Drink: Now-2025
Alc: 14.7%

Buty: Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Muted black cherry nose. Lush, textured, and concentrated, infused with delicious dark fruits. Drinks well now but has lift, acidity and great persistence. 18pts/20
Price: N/A UK. $55 butywinery.com
Drink: Now-2022
Alc: 14.5%

Cayuse: Widowmaker Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Smoky savoury nose. Full-bodied and almost meaty, with sweetness of fruit but no jamminess, lacy and long. 18pts/20
Price: N/A UK (Berry Bros stock other wines). $70 cayusevineyards.com
Drink: 2013-2025
Alc: 14.3%

Seven Hills: Klipsun Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Rich, dusty, leafy nose, robust and forthright. Full-bodied, powerful, and spicy, complex and assertive, with a very long chewy finish. 18pts/20
Price: N/A UK (Stone Vine & Sun stock other wines). $35 sevenhillswinery.com
Drink: 2013-2025
Alc: 13.8%

DeLille: Chaleur Estate Red Mountain 2008 (64% CS, 25% Merlot, 9% CF, 2% PV).

Sweet blackberry nose.  Full-bodied, dense, and tannic, has grip and spice, and hints of tobacco and leathery. Long. 17.5pts/20
Price: N/A UK. $80 delillecellars.com
Drink: 2013-2022
Alc: 14.4%

Abeja: 2008 Columbia Valley Merlot 2008

Opulent plum and mokka nose. Very ripe, lush and soft, not very nuanced but has freshness, pep, and balance. Long. 17.5pts/20
Price: N/A UK. $35 abeja.net
Drink: Now-2018
Alc: 14.8%

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