2009 Long Shadows "Pedestal" Columbia Valley Merlot
*Cellar Selection* 0 Michel Rolland’s Long Shadows wine is 83% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. Bay leaf and pretty herb scents introduce a wine that remains tightly wound. Black cherry and cassis flavors are set in a frame of smoky espresso. The tannins are polished, and the finish is deliciously long.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright ruby-red. Very ripe aromas of black cherry, melted licorice and minerals. Sweet, ripe and strong, with a distinctly sappy quality to its black cherry and sexy oak flavors. This struck me as more masculine than the 2008 version and every bit as fresh--and in need of longer bottle aging. Finishes classically dry and long, with solid backbone. (ST)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
“It’s a blending grape,” Shoup continues to maintain about Merlot, “and has to be grown in really special ways to achieve greatness standing alone” – he should surely have added: “in special places” – but, nonetheless, he felt that given its status as something of a signature grape for Washington, he should (to hear him tell, with considerable effort) persuade Michel Rolland to render a Merlot showcase, of which 2009 Pedestal is the latest installment, prominently featuring Red Mountain fruit, while involving small amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon and (for the first time) Malbec. Scents of cherry preserves, mint, peat, espresso roast, toasted coconut and caramelized resin, presage a correspondingly complex, torrefied and confitured palate impression. The polish and plushness here are impressive as is the wine’s sheer sweet and smoky length, though a hint of heat does creep into the finish from 14.9% alcohol. This definitely should be served no warmer than 65 degrees Fahrenheit. (DS)