Wine Press Northwest: May, 2012

Tamarack Cellars was honored with a featurd profile by WinePress Northwest. In addition to discussing Firehouse Red and our winemaking in-depth, six of our wines were reviewed and took top honors.


2010 Firehouse Red

Columbia Valley, $16.

Outstanding! One of Washington’s top value wines continues to live up to its legacy. Danny Gordon and founder Ron Coleman invest remarkable amounts of time, effort and expense into this, and that shows in this creation from Cabernet Sauvignon (34%), Syrah (32%), Merlot (12%), Cabernet Franc (10%), Malbec (4%), Sangiovese (4%), Zinfandel (2%), Petit Verdot (1%) and Carménère. Its robust nose offers a stream of blackberry, black cherry and chocolate, followed by tar, soy sauce and crushed leaf. The influence of Syrah becomes more prominent on the palate, where ripe black fruit of boysenberry, Marionberry and blackberry create tremendous mouth feel and terrific balance. Hints of tobacco and black olive in the finish add food-friendly complexity. (12,000 cases, 13.9% alc.)

2007 DuBrul Vineyard Reserve

Rattlesnake Hills, $50

Excellent. This Walla Walla winery was among the first to feature this Yakima Valley vineyard that’s grown to achieve cult-like status for its grapes. This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (62%), Merlot (31%) and Cabernet Franc fans out aromas of chocolate, vanilla, black cherry, pipe tobacco and saddle leather. Its hedonism rears up inside with flavors of sweet plums and blackberry on the entry, followed by tobacco, anise and iron shavings. The pending 2009 bottling will be Tamarack’s final production of this vineyard-designate creation. (245 cases, 14.1% alc.)

2009 Sagemoor Vineyard Reserve

Columbia Valley, $50

Excellent. Ron Coleman has featured wines from this historic vineyard since 2002, and the blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (44%), Merlot (28%) and Cabernet Franc is a coffee-lovers delight. There are abundant toasty barrel notes throughout, yet there’s gobs of big black fruit to support the oak. Blackberry and Marionberry tones spill out into smoothness in the mouth with delicious notes of vanilla, cola and Aussie black licorice. (182 cases, 14.63% alc.)

2008 Cabernet Sauvignon

Columbia Valley, $32.

Outstanding! An all-star lineup of vineyards includes Bacchus, Ciel du Cheval, Dionysus, DuBrul, Tapteil and Weinbau, which makes for a nose of blackberry fruit leather, anise, Darjeeling team and pottery clay. Dried blackberry, black currant, sage, tobacco and black olive flavors gather up notes of slate and Costa Rican coffee with late chalkiness. (1,162 cases, 14.3% alc.)

2010 Chardonnay

Columbia Valley, $15.

Recommended. Best Buy! An assortment of six vineyards, ranging from French Creek in the Yakima Valley to Alderbanks in the Walla Walla Valley, form this bright Chardonnay with laser-like acidity and minimal influence of new oak. Aromas feature white peach, pineapple, lemon, fresh-cut potato skins and candle wax, followed by a rush of flavors that hint at Granny Smith apple, quince and fresh mint. (1,870 cases, 13.5% alc.)