2007 Andrew Will "Ciel du Cheval Vineyard" Red Mountain Washington Red Wine

SKU #1061891 96 points Wine Enthusiast

 A completely different blend from the winery’s 2006 Ciel, this reflects Chris Camarda’s growing enchantment with Cabernet Franc, which is now 45% of the blend. Most of the rest is Merlot--a Right Bank style. The concept works. It captures the sleek minerality of the site, and puts the fruit into tight, laser-like focus. The wine seems almost crystalline--sharp-edged and reflective, with penetrating angles and offset flavors. *Cellar Selection* (PG)  (8/2010)

94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2007 Ciel du Cheval is a blend of 45% Cabernet Franc, 40% Merlot, and 15 % Cabernet Sauvignon aged in 40% new French oak for 20 months. Medium purple in color, it offers up an enticing nose of pain grille, pencil lead, herbs, olives, violets, cassis, and black currant. Ripe, smooth-textured, and mouth-filling, it has enough structure to evolve for several years. This lengthy effort will offer prime drinking from 2013 to 2027. (JM)  (8/2010)

94 points Wine & Spirits

 Dark and youthful, this blends cabernet franc and merlot with a small portion of cabernet sauvignon. It leads with savory tar and mocha scents that meld with plump blue fruit. The flavors seem fat and rich at first, but the tannins supporting all that weight are so precise and tightly wound it's clear the wine is a long way from peak expression. Wait a year, then check it out with a hanger steak.  (8/2010)

92 points Vinous

 (45% cabernet franc, 40% merlot and 15% cabernet sauvignon) Deep red. Reticent but pure aromas of blueberry, spices and dark chocolate. Juicy, spicy and intensely flavored if a bit imploded today; more vibrant than the Two Blondes. The fresh dark berry flavors and this young and serious wine's broad, fine, tooth-dusting tannins suggest that it will be superb with four or five years of cellaring. One of many terrific Bordeaux blends I tasted this year that downplays cabernet sauvignon in favor of cabernet franc and merlot. (ST)  (11/2009)

92 points Wine Spectator

 A bit rough around the edges, but not enough to detract from the gorgeous, focused blackberry, currant, green olive and dusky spice flavors that course through the focused finish. Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. (HS)  (6/2010)


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Varietal:

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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

Washington

- 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.