- Pinot Gris and things from the seaPosted 2 hours ago
- Auction of Washington Wines climbs to No. 4 in U.S. rankingsPosted 3 days ago
- Idaho wine industry coming into its ownPosted 1 week ago
- Olympia gives Washington wineries more tasting roomsPosted 1 week ago
- Abacela, Bunnell star again at Pacific Rim International Wine CompetitionPosted 1 week ago
- Boushey takes over Klipsun Vineyard managementPosted 2 weeks ago
- Judges select favorites from 2017 Cascadia Wine CompetitionPosted 2 weeks ago
- Washington Syrah continues to grow in popularityPosted 2 weeks ago
- Red Mountain’s famed Klipsun Vineyard sold to Chicago firmPosted 2 weeks ago
- Bud break marks start of 2017 vintage for Washington winePosted 2 weeks ago
Long Shadows’ Gilles Nicault relishes working with greats
WALLA WALLA, Wash. – It’s easy to be jealous of Gilles Nicault, head winemaker for Long Shadows Vintners.
First of all, he’s French – and, well, we’re not. That’s one cool accent that gives him a certain je ne sais quoi.
And then there’s the job. He makes wine for Allen Shoup, a visionary and former CEO of Ste. Michelle Wine Estates. And he gets to make wine alongside some of the world’s greatest winemakers, assembled together to create something great with Washington grapes.
Here’s our interview with Gilles in this week’s Great Northwest Winecast.
As the winemaker for Long Shadows, Gilles works in a beautiful facility surrounded by Chihuly glass (don’t worry, it’s kept pretty far away from his barrels), and he consorts with an amazing lineup of winemakers, including:
- Agustin Huneeus Sr., founder of wineries in both California and Chile, and Philippe Melka, a fellow Frenchman who has made his mark on two continents. Together, they craft Pirouette, a blend that leads with Cabernet Sauvignon and contains the five classic Bordeaux varieties.
- Randy Dunn, who has been making wine in Napa Valley since 1975. Together, they make Feather, a 100% Cabernet Sauvignon.
- Armin Diel, one of Germany’s top Riesling producers and owner of Schlossgut Diel in the Nahe Valley. Together, they make Poet’s Leap (dry, ice and botrytis affected).
- John Duval, only Australia’s most acclaimed winemaker because of his association with Penfolds Grange, one of the world’s most acclaimed red wines. He and Gilles make Sequel, a wine that is mostly Syrah with a dab of Cabernet Sauvignon.
- Ambrogio and Giovanni Folonari, whose family has been making wine in Tuscany since the 1700s. This father-son team works with Gilles on Saggi, a Super Tuscan blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah.
- Michel Rolland, famous in Bordeaux and beyond as the world’s foremost winemaking consultant. Together, they craft Pedestal, a wine heavy with Merlot but also containing Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.
In addition to all of this fun, Gilles crafts Chester-Kidder, a superb red blend, along with the newly released Shoup and Coté Nicault brands. He also makes the hugely popular Pinot Gris rosé called Julia’s Dazzle and a group of four wines under the label Nine Hats (to signify the winemaking partners in Long Shadows).
All in all, Long Shadows is an amazing story, and Gilles feels fortunate to be in the center of it all.
If you like what you hear, we would appreciate a quick review on iTunes.
Click here to go to find the Great Northwest Winecast on iTunes (for subscribing or reviewing).