Secret Squirrel 2012 Red Wine, Red Mountain, $30

By on July 13, 2016

secret-squirrel-red-wine-2012-bottleThere’s more and more delicious juice produced in the Northwest because of advancements in viticulture, the current string of warm vintages and the anticipated growing demand. As a result, more wineries are creating second labels or sister brands to appropriately present the wines that don’t line up with a particular program. Secret Squirrel is the young and fun vehicle for Corliss Estates/Tranche in Walla Walla, and this bottling is Left Bank-type blend off Mike Corliss’ Red Mountain Vineyard. From the initial purchase in 2007 through his 2012 acquisition, Corliss has expanded his footprint near Sunset Road beyond 300 acres, which made possible this melange of Cabernet Sauvignon (42%), Merlot (27%), Cab Franc (13%), Petit Verdot (11%) and Malbec. The lot spent 28 months in a program of 65 percent new French oak, imparting complex aromas of dried black cherry, currant and cedar with some hints of chocolate cake, cinnamon and Cab Franc’s herbal thumbprint. Inside, it’s reminiscent of macerated cherries, backed by bittersweet chocolate and Red Hots candy. The tannin structure shows the broad shoulders of many Red Mountain reds, and pomegranate acidity makes for a long finish. These wines are widely distributed in Washington, including Metropolitan Markets, QFC, Total Wine & More and Whole Foods, restaurants such as Saffron in Walla Walla and Salty’s on Alki as well as wine merchants  Esquin and ImpulseWine.com.

Rating: Excellent

Alcohol: 14.5%

Winery website

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About Great Northwest Wine

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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