L’Ecole No. 41 2012 Semillon, Columbia Valley, $14

By on February 5, 2014

l'ecole-no-41-semillon-2012-bottleBest Buy! L’Ecole No. 41 has earned its reputation as arguably the Pacific Northwest’s top producer of Semillon, and this vintage might be its best effort. Mike Sharon sourced from six distinctly different vineyards — Desert Wind and Rosebud (Wahluke Slope), Klipsun (Red Mountain), Les Collines and Seven Hills (Walla Walla Valley) and Stillwater Creek (Frenchman Hills) — then fermented in French oak that received little toast. There’s a beautiful nose of dusty apple, pineapple, poached pear, fresh fig and a touch of oak. Inside comes a rich and buttery structure that also offers fig and pear flavors, along with a spoonful of lemon yogurt, a cut of grassiness and a kiss of oak in the finish. Consider this as the Semillon for those who enjoy reserve-style Chardonnay — only at half the price — and serve with lobster or scallops.

Rating: Outstanding!

Production: 5,365 cases

Alcohol: 14.5%

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Articles authored by Great Northwest Wine are co-authored by Eric Degerman and Andy Perdue. In most cases, these are wine reviews that are judged blind by the Great Northwest Wine tasting panel.

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