2012 K Vintners "Charlotte" Columbia Valley Rhône Blend (Previously $60)
(a Châteauneuf du Pape blend from the Rocks, fermented entirely with whole clusters in cement and stainless steel, with the white grapes and the lighter reds at the bottom of the tank; then aged in large neutral puncheons for 30 months): Moderately saturated medium red. Spicy, iron-scented cherry and raspberry aromas display noteworthy precision. A step up in intensity from the Boy, boasting terrific cut and energy to its uncompromisingly dry red berry and spice flavors. Finishes with a firm spine of acids and dusty, fine-grained tannins, hints of bay leaf and fresh blood, and subtle saline length. (ST)
Mourvèdre (47%) and Grenache (37%) are in the lead on this wine with the balance Syrah, Counoise and Picpoul. The aromas of red and black fruit, brown stems, green olive, coffee and spice are initially faint while the tart red-fruit flavors bring a sense of delicacy and restraint. (SS)
According to the winemaker: "Charlotte, the wine. My daughter was born in 2012. Complex aromas of hibiscus, savory herb, cured black olive. On a feminine frame, but with a willful spine of minerality as they age. They both will become more and more beautiful. River Rock: Owned and farmed by Dana Dibble, planted in 2001. The site is located south of Walla Walla in the old Walla Walla River bed; the soil is rocky and with great drainage. The clone of Syrah sourced is Tablas Creek, which thrives in the big river stone cobble. This is the warmest site in the Walla Walla Valley. Morrison Lane: Oldest Syrah plantings in the Walla Walla Valley, southeastern facing slopes, slightly cooler site in the foothills of the Blue Mountains. Soil composition consists of Touchet silt loam and riverwash, sandy loam with coarse sand and gravel. Planted in 1984. Washington’s vintners were overjoyed at what they tasted after a growing season that tracked very much like 2008, one of the best vintages in memory. Depths of color and flavor in an abundant crop that retained its desired acidity seems to have put a smile on most winemakers’ faces. Following several cooler vintages, 2012 allowed the vines to ripen normally. The waves of fruit came in smoothly. Fruit could hang longer without worrying about getting too ripe. The steady ripening also allowed for beautiful structure and elegance."