2008 Long Shadows "Chester Kidder" Columbia Valley Red

SKU #1229642 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright, deep ruby-red. Expressive nose offers currant, cherry cola, graphite and dark chocolate. Silky, sexy and intense, with firm, vibrant cabernet fruit complicated by licorice and spices. Finishes lively and very long, with sweet tannins and solid structure from the cabernet, some of which spent up to 40 days on its skins. (a blend of 61% cabernet sauvignon, 29% syrah, 6% petit verdot and 4% cabernet franc; aged in 90% new French oak for 30 months) (ST)  (12/2012)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Tannins grip around the edges of expressive cherry, roasted meat and herb flavors, mingling effectively on the long finish. Strikes an attractive balance and keeps singing on the finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2014 through 2018. 1,005 cases made. (HS)  (11/2012)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The Long Shadows 2008 Chester-Kidder is the latest installment of winemaker Gilles Nicault’s personal project (named ,however, for two ancestors of Allen Shoup). A blend of 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Syrah, 6% Petit Verdot and 4% Cabernet Franc, it fermented with limited pump-overs and forced air cap contact but no punch-downs (the danger with this fruit - particularly Syrah from Candy Mountain, allegedly Washington’s warmest site - is over-extraction, notes Nicault), and spent an amazingly long 30 months in nearly all new barrels (albeit, per Nicault, of "the more delicate sorts"), an approach its author thinks apt for the marriage of Syrah with Bordelais cepages. Polished, even creamy in texture, with its tannins totally tenderized, as is the case with most Long Shadows wines, this also displays seamlessness in terms of its interfacing of varieties - or at least, I can’t pull out many characteristics specific to any one of them. Jellied cassis, dark cherry, and blueberry mingle with milk chocolate, caramel, and vanilla, meaty or mineral tones being largely absent or sublimated ,but a faintly bitter herbal note is, perhaps, a contribution of the Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, while a suggestion of black pepper in the finish is surely traceable to Syrah. The most striking thing about this wine beyond its sweet sense of richness and its polished texture is a welcome sense of buoyancy....  (12/2012)

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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.