Washington 1997: Drink soon
A large crop of good quality wines
Both March and April were much cooler than normal, and bud-break was late, slow and erratic. Before panic set in, a surprising heat spell in May encouraged vine growth and led to a late May bloom. This pleasant warm spell contributed to a good set. For both July and August the growing season enjoyed warm dry conditions which allowed the fruit to ripen slowly and incrementally. Though the crop for Merlot was significantly larger than normal, and although September was a little cool and unseasonably wet, the reds managed to ripen and mature slowly. From warmer sites, Merlot was safely in the cellars by the middle of September. For cooler areas, it was being picked the first week in October.
See best producers
Chateau Ste. Michelle (Indian Wells), L’Ecole No 41(Seven Hills Vyd), Leonetti, Canoe Ridge, Powers, Columbia Winery (Milestone), Hogue Cellars Reserve, Snoqualmie Winery, Columbia Crest Estate, Seven Hills, Apex, Balcom & Moe
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