2015 Avennia "Valery" Columbia Valley Bordeaux Blend (Previously $40)

SKU #1391608 93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 A blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Valery offers up a creamy bouquet of ripe plums, wild berries, dried flowers and candied peel that's marked by its Champoux Cabernet Franc component. The Merlot makes its presence felt on the velvety and plush medium to full-bodied palate. Nicely concentrated and complete, the wine concludes with fine-grained tannins and a nicely delineated finish. (WK)  (6/2018)

92 points Jeb Dunnuck

 The 2015 Valery (70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc brought up in 30% new French oak) offers a deep, herbal, black-fruited, coffee bean and mineral-driven style. Medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated, and fresh on the palate, with fine tannin, give this elegant, classic, slightly old-school effort a year or two of bottle age and enjoy over the following decade. I continue to consider Chris Peterson’s Avennia estate to be one of the best in Washington State and he’s been making world-class wines for a number of years now. 92+  (4/2018)

92 points Vinous

 Good full red. Aromas of raspberry, plum and spices, complicated by a smoky, flinty nuance. Harmonious acidity gives a penetrating quality to this very suave midweight yet its flavors of spicy red and darker berry fruits are pliant and utterly seamless. Finishes suave and long, with echoing berry flavors joined by graphite minerality and a very subtle oak component. Really fills the mouth without leaving any impression of weightiness. The 2015 has plenty of structure for aging. (ST)  (10/2017)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 This blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc from Boushey and Champoux vineyards is buoyantly aromatic, with dark raspberry, leafy herb, cocoa powder and incense notes. On the palate, it's flavorful yet light-footed and exquisitely balanced. Thoroughly captivating. *Editors' Choice* (SS)  (8/2018)

K&L Notes

Winemaker's Notes: "Ripe, almost exotic nose of red berries, plum, cocoa powder, incense, violet, and a loamy note from the Cabernet Franc. On the palate, the Valery is extremely silky and elegant, with pomegranate, raspberry compote, fresh herbs, floral elements, and a note of minerality on the finish. This wine shows great freshness for such a warm vintage, and should age nicely for 8-12 years. Valery is named for the patron saint of wine in the St. Emilion region that inspired it. We started with old vine Merlot from a stony block in the heart of the Yakima Valley and added complex, aromatic Cabernet Franc from the Horse Heaven Hills. The result is a balanced, complex wine with the elegance and ethereal perfume that this blend of two of Washington’s best varietals are known for."

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By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/11/2018 | Send Email
A seriously impressive bottle. Explosive aromas of ripe plum, red currant, briary undergrowth, pipe tobacco and wintergreen. Medium to full bodied but not at all heavy or jammy...just perfectly ripe flavors and refined tannins. A wine that really has one foot in Bordeaux and the other in Washington! Avennia's "Valery" (named after the patron saint of St. Emilion, France) pays a fitting homage to the great wines of the right bank. I think this will probably age with the best growths in St. Emilion too...it's a very serious wine that continued to improve and flesh out over three days of tasting.

By: Thomas Smith | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/11/2018 | Send Email
A touch more focused and concentrated than the Gravura, and the nose here is definitely St. Emilion-inspired. On the palate this wine is incredibly balanced with tons of graphite and cassis. There is an abundant minerality to this wine that I absolutely love. For me, this wine neatly fits into the category of exceptional Bordeaux blends from unexpected places--not unlike the Rustenberg from South Africa. There is a touch more fruit than you would otherwise find in most Bordeaux, but the level of quality is stunning. You can’t find Bordeaux this well made at this price point. This is well worth the effort of buying a case to stow away in the cellar.

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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.


- 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.