The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2012

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POET'S LEAP RIESLING Partner: Germany's Armin Diel While Riesling from the Mosel tends towards delicate, tight-rope acidity, Riesling from Germany's Nahe region additionally accesses a depth of stone fruit and floral tones. The result of the Long Shadows partnership with wine- maker Armin Diel, one of Germany's most acclaimed Riesling producers, Poet's Leap 2011 speaks to Diel's Nahe style, with the added element of German clones planted in unique Columbia Valley growing regions. Long Shadows' own Sonnet Vineyard at The Benches (40%) delivers a flinty character; Yakima Valley's Phil Church Vineyard (26%) adds citrus and liveliness; and the Weinbau Vineyard and old-vine Dionysus Vineyard showcase fresh summer peach and its luscious texture. 12.3% alcohol/3,895 cases/$20 SAGGI Partners: Ambrogio and Giovanni Folonari Ambrogio Folonari was instru- mental in keeping his family's fine Tuscan estate in order, with family roots dating back to the 1700s. He and his son Giovanni were also the former owners of Ruffino wine company. Together, they own Ambrogio e Giovanni Folonari Tenute, primarily produc- ing Tuscan "grand crus." In the 1980s, Ambrogio created Cabreo, a unique combination of tradition and innovation a blend of traditional Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon, which was one of the country's first Super Tuscans. Like Cabreo, Long Shadow's Saggi 2008 is a blend of Sangiovese (45%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (40%) with a 15% addition of Syrah, a Super Tuscan–style blend (perhaps a "Wa-Tuscan") for the Columbia Valley. It is an open spice rack with intense flavors of dense soil and black cherry on a supple texture. A shot of espresso cleans the palate on the finish. The Folonaris selected the exact site they wanted for the three varietals and Horse Heaven Hills was an ideal appella- tion for most of the Sangiovese grapes. 1236 cases/$45 SEQUEL Partner: John Duval The 2011 Poet's Leap Riesling is paired with crab cakes at Blueacre Seafood in Seattle. PEDESTAL Partner: Michel Rolland If any single living wine- maker should be standing on a pedestal, it is Pomerol wine "composer" and inter- national consultant Michel Rolland. "When Michel asked for French oak upright tanks for his Merlot project, Pedestal, well, we did not hesitate to accommodate him," admits Shoup. "Believe me, it panned out when we received the amazing accolades for this wine." Aromatic and supple, Pedestal 2008 Merlot is round and lush, with soy-sauce covered blackberries amid earthen clay and ripe figs. This perfumed beast is concentrated and layered. 2012 cases/$55 When John Duval, the man who was the winemaker for Australia's iconic Penfolds Grange for 16 years, came to the Columbia Valley, he instinctively sought out Syrah. At the time, the best fruit was already contracted, so Duval told Shoup that he would have to postpone the project. But Shoup's long- lived relationship with Columbia Valley growers proved fortunate, and he found the right fruit that would bring Duval back to Washington State to develop Sequel. "This is John's sequel—the continu- ation of his life's work with Syrah," says Shoup. The Sequel 2008 is that metaphorical deep, mysteri- ous beauty that carries amorous aromas of anise, patchouli and other exotic spice. Savory black pepper and a wreath of violets adorns her further. 1,025 cases/$50 Allen Shoup at his Walla Walla Winery, a study in modern architecture. He is pictured with his eponymous wine, Shoup, an ultra-small- production Cab/Merlot/Malbec blend accented with Petit Verdot. It possesses violets in black ink, laced with an earthen core. october 2012 / the tasting panel / 99

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