One of Walla Walla’s most layered brands is Canoe Ridge Vineyard, which is named after the storied estate vineyard in the Horse Heaven Hills. Seattle-based Precept Wine now owns the winery and the planting, and winemaker Bill Murray also brought in fruit from two other Precept sites – The Benches and Canyon Vineyard Ranch – for this atypical blend of Syrah (49%), Merlot (38%), Grenache (12%) and Cinsault. The historically hot vintage, combined with a balanced barrel program of all French oak, makes for aromas of cocoa powder and tobacco with black cherry and dried strawberry. Mild tannins create a fruit-driven entry of Bing cherry and blackberry. Leading out, baking spices and savory black olive make for an understated and rather elegant finish. Suggested pairings include grilled burgers, pan-seared steak and dishes based on tomato sauces.
Production: 2,000 cases