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1989 vintage guide for Washington State Cabernet Sauvignon

Washington State Cabernet Sauvignon 1989: Drink soon

A first-class vintage with ripe, well-balanced wines

Weather Conditions

Through August of this year, both California and Washington were on a course toward a great vintage. The difference is that Washington winemakers enjoyed ideal weather in September and October and had themselves an excellent vintage. At the same time, their colleagues in Napa were running for cover from one storm after another. Washington’s great year began with an unusual cold snap in February. The berries were average sized and from veraison to harvest, the weather was as near perfect as can be. The average temperature in August and September was 86F/30C, with no heat spikes or heat waves. Harvest began the third week of September for Merlot vineyards with Cabernet coming in right after them.

Leonetti’s ’89 Cabernet played to rave reviews and elevated the winery to cult status, but this was the vintage that focused world attention on Washington for its fleshy Cabernets and Merlots.

Best Appellations

See best producers

Best Producers

Leonetti, Quilceda Creek, L’Ecole No 41, Chateau Ste. Michelle, Yakima River, Hyatt, Waterbrook, Woodward Canyon, Columbia Winery

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