The Walla Walla Valley’s fourth-oldest winery celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, and John Freeman’s latest top tier of Cabernet Sauvignon ranks as one of the state’s most brilliant releases of 2014. The winemaker, who is well into his second decade in Washington, reached into Alder Ridge, Blackrock, Canyon Ranch and Mirage, and a barrel program of two years sets the mood with a hedonistic nose of plum, black cherry, cola, dark chocolate and sarsaparilla. A tilt of the glass allows for a flow of bold and juicy flavors akin to black cherry and cocoa powder with vanilla bean, cherry cola and a stunning array of baking spices. The robust structure carries fine-grained tannins that bode well for pairings with roasted lamb with fresh rosemary, pepper-encrusted steak or grilled vegetables.
Production: 180 cases