I just got in three new wines from Washington State (oh, here we go again with the Evergreen Bandwagon) – from Revelry Wines in Walla Walla. My good friend Jeff (of Ohio/KY distributor Vintner Select) told me these were coming, and I must admit I brought them in on blind faith. Granted, 1) I haven’t met a Washington State wine I didn’t like, and 2) it’s like one-in-a-billion that Vintner Select brings in a bad wine, so I feel there really isn’t any kind of gamble involved.
Revelry Vintners was established in 2006, with winemaking team Jared Burns and Bryan Jones. Located in Walla Walla, Washington (home to such amazing wineries as L’Ecole, Woodward Canyon, Dusted Valley and Bergevin Lane among many others), Revelry sets out to craft incredible values. I was really looking forward to trying these (I haven’t brought their Chardonnay in just yet – to be honest, the last thing the store needs is another Chardonnay, no matter how good it may be).
So against my better judgment, I went ahead and tried the Revelry Merlot Columbia Valley 2007 (Grade=Outstanding) first. Usually, Washington State Merlot tends to be bigger, fuller-bodied than their Cabs, so I was going solely on a quick-and-dirty lining-up. This particular Merlot exudes dark plum and mulberry notes, with very juicy black cherry undertones, some slight herbaceousness and baking spice character, and juicy red berry fruit all the way through to the finish. It’s even exhibiting a hint of iodine present toward the end, but still shows off a lot of cherry/berry/grapeyness.
Next up was the Revelry Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley 2008 (Grade=Outstanding), a tightly-wound but nevertheless full-bodied red with loads of dark plum, black currant, cedar and vanilla. It shows off a lavish framework of black cherries, some dark chocolate and Oolong tea character as well. The tannins are plush, albeit a little stiff, but a little time in the glass, and it opens right up.
Finally, The Revelry The Reveler Columbia Valley Cuvee Red Wine 2008 (Grade=Outstanding+) is a lusty, succulent red blend the uniquely puts Petit Verdot as the primary grape in the mix, with 38% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon to give it firm tannins and wonderful complexity. A dark, inky hue gives way to red flowers and black fruits in the nose, chocolate-covered cherries, chocolate-covered espresso bean, black and red tea, cigar box, vanilla and nutmeg, and blackberry compote. It is fleshy, rich and still shows off a lot of grace and finesse. Though still exuding youthfulness, it is a very satisfying red for the price.
All three of these wines are in our stores for under $20 – another hit for Washington State!