Quilceda Creek Vinters

Wine Advocate 10-year Quilceda Creek Vertical Review

Quilceda Creek Vintners2010Red WineColumbia ValleyRed 92
Quilceda Creek Vintners2010PalengatHorse Heaven HillsRed 97
Quilceda Creek Vintners2009PalengatHorse Heaven HillsRed 97
Quilceda Creek Vintners2010Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 98+
Quilceda Creek Vintners2009Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 99
Quilceda Creek Vintners2008Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 97+
Quilceda Creek Vintners2007Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 100
Quilceda Creek Vintners2006Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 96
Quilceda Creek Vintners2005Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 100
Quilceda Creek Vintners2004Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 98
Quilceda Creek Vintners2003Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 100
Quilceda Creek Vintners2002Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 98
Quilceda Creek Vintners2001Cabernet SauvignonColumbia ValleyRed 97
Quilceda Creek Vintners2010Cabernet Sauvignon Galitzine VydRed MountainRed 97
Quilceda Creek Vintners2009Cabernet Sauvignon Galitzine VydRed MountainRed 96

This line up was one of the highlights of my trip through Washington and without a doubt, this awesome estate, which is run by Paul and Alex Golitzin, is producing some of the top Cabernet Sauvignon blends in the state, and I would venture the world. While all of the wines are incredibly age-worthy, the tannins are so well managed and the textures so polished, they dish out immense pleasure even in their youth.

A superb entry level effort that has not only layers of fruit and texture, but solid back-end structure, the 2010 Red Wine is a declassified blend of mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, yet has 15% Merlot and a splash of Malbec, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc in there as well. Up-front, perfumed and intense, it offers up spice-laced red and black fruits, toast, cedar, vanilla and hints of chocolate to go with a full-bodied, mouth-filling and voluptuously textured palate. Lacking the polish and elegance that can be found in this estate's upper tier efforts, it nevertheless has superb fruit, ripe tannin and serious length. Enjoy it while you wait for this estate's other wines to mature. Drink now-2020. Refined, elegant and supple yet also rich and concentrated, the Merlot-dominated 2010 Palengat has 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 7% Petit Verdot in the blend and spent 20 months in 100% new French oak. Gorgeous on the nose, with notions of crème de cassis, violets, graphite and mint, it flows onto the palate with full-bodied richness and depth that's paired with a seamless, incredibly elegant and polished texture. Firming up on the finish with masses of tannin, mineral and juicy acidity, this incredible 2010 needs 3-5 years of bottle age and will have upwards of 15-20 years of ultimate longevity. Drink now-2030. Much more Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated, the 2009 Palengat (86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 6% Merlot) shows the warmer vintage with ripe red and black fruit, licorice, roasted meat and hints of singed herbs on the nose. Fantastically polished on the palate, with silky tannin, full-bodied richness and a layered mouthfeel, it is a knockout effort that will have 15-20 years of prime drinking. Drink now–2029.

The estate's top cuvée, Paul's Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon comes primarily from the warmer Champoux Vineyard located in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA, yet also incorporates smaller components from Ciel du Cheval, Klipsun, Tapteil and Galitzine. It sees roughly 22 months in 100% new French oak.

Rich, backwards, structured and massively concentrated, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon comes mostly from the Champoux Vineyard (also from Galitzine, Klipsun, Palengat and Tapteil) and is comprised of 99% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Merlot that spent 22 months in all new French oak. Offering up plenty of crème de cassis, coffee bean, toasted spice, pencil shavings and violet-like qualities on the nose, it has palate staining levels of extract and tannin that come through on the mid-palate and finish. Gorgeously full-bodied, layered and textured, with perfect balance, this awesome Cabernet needs to be forgotten for 5-6 years and will have two to three decades of longevity. Drink 2018-2030.

The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon (98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Merlot) is a ripe, flamboyant and brilliantly proportioned effort that oozes kirsch, licorice, lead pencil shavings and dried spice on the nose. Showing the perfume and headiness of the vintage, it nevertheless stays vibrant and lively on the palate while delivering layers of fruit and texture. While formidably structured and tannic, it can be enjoyed now due to the overall tannin quality and purity of fruit. It will evolve and drink well for over two decades. Drink now-2029.

More pure and focused than the 2009, with a slightly closer to the vest feel, the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon shows the cooler nature of the vintage and has incredible detail, purity and freshness to its aromas and flavors. A blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Merlot that spent 22 months in 100% new French oak, it offers classic black currant, spice box, coffee bean, violets and exotic spices to go with an ethereal, layered and seamless palate that delivers massive amounts of fruit and texture without any apparent weight. I thoroughly enjoyed it now, yet it will age for decades. Drink now–2033.

A monumental wine in the making, the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon is one of those wines that presents such an over the top array of aromas and flavors that it's hard to figure out what you think about it with just a quick glance. It's only with the second or third sip that you really start to see how special this effort truly is. Offering up perfumed, intense aromas of plum, violets, ink, licorice and black currants, it flows onto the palate with a massive, incredibly full-bodied texture that builds through the mid-palate and carries layers of polished tannins, awesome purity of fruit and blockbuster length. Most likely not for everyone given the sheer size, it is an incredible wine in my opinion. Still tasting like a barrel sample, it will have 30+ total years of longevity. Drink 2017-2037.

The most evolved of the lineup, with complex spice box, wild herbs, dried flowers, currants and scorched earth aromas all emerging from the glass, the 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon is beautifully textured, full-bodied and seamless on the palate. Up-front and approachable, it nevertheless has the back-end richness, depth and structure to continue to evolve for another decade or more. Drink now-2023.

From a hot vintage and incredible any way you look at it, the 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon has that laser-like focus of a cooler year, yet the voluptuousness and richness of a warmer year. Smoked black fruits, coffee, truffle and pen ink-like aromas and flavors all emerge from this massive, incredibly full-bodied effort and on the palate, it carries itself perfectly with a weightless, yet decadent texture, masses of polished tannin and blockbuster length. More classic and textbook than the 2007, it is every bit as good. Enjoy it over the coming two decades or more. Drink now-2033.

Also offering off-the-charts richness, with a flamboyant, hedonistic profile, the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon (96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc) possesses spice-laced aromas and flavors of cassis, smoke, tobacco, roasted meats, dried licorice and wild herbs that are to die for. Full-bodied, incredibly layered, rich and textured, it has no hard edges, masses of tannin and a finish that won’t quit. I've been lucky enough to taste this cuvée three times (rated 96 and 97) in the past handful of weeks and this was the best showing yet. From a cool vintage, it is still youthful and vibrant, and will continue to shine for another 15+ years. Drink now-2028.

Another wine that I've had multiple times recently, the 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon (97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Merlot) is pure perfection in a glass and yields off-the-hook aromatics of cassis, black raspberries, tobacco leaf, pepper and licorice. Deep, layered and even elegant, with a seamless texture that conceals the sheer wealth of material present, it builds through the mid-palate, possesses huge amounts of extract and masses of polished tannin on the finish. Despite the overall size, it never loses its Cabernet Sauvignon soul and has an almost Bordeaux-like savoriness and tannic frame. Still young (yet gorgeous nonetheless), it can be enjoyed now or cellared for another 10-15+ years. Drink now-2028.

Almost as good as the 2003, the 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc that spent 22 months in 100% new French oak. Its youthful purple/ruby color is followed by gorgeously complex and intense aromas of wild herbs, exotic spices, caramelized beef, licorice and layers of sweet black fruits and creamy black cherry-like nuances. Full-bodied, rich and incredibly youthful, it opens up beautifully in the glass and is a total thrill ride of a Washington State Cabernet. I'd enjoy bottles over the coming decade, but it will hold longer. Drink now-2027.

A smidge more evolved than the 2002, the 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc, mostly from the famed Champoux Vineyard in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA. It offers a rock star bouquet of blackberry liqueur, cassis, dried licorice, spice and roasted meats to go with a full-bodied, concentrated, yet incredibly polished and elegantly textured mouthfeel. Blockbuster stuff that has everything, it is still youthful and vibrant and has another decade or more of longevity, although I see no reason to delay gratification. Drink now-2023.

Even more concentrated, structured and dense than the Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Galitzine Vineyard (99% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Merlot, all from the Red Mountain AVA) delivers an incredible array of black currant, dark chocolate, cedar, tobacco and assorted spring flower-like nuances that give way to a massively concentrated, tannic and structured 2010 that has brilliant mid-palate depth, integrated acidity and a pure, detailed and energetic texture that carries through the finish. As with the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon, this is more fun to taste than to drink presently and needs 5-6 years or more of bottle age to round into form. It too will have two to three decades or more of ultimate longevity. Drink 2018-2035. Also incredibly concentrated, with burly structure and a mountain of tannin, the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Galitzine Vineyard (99% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Merlot) delivers a seriously intense array of blackberry and kirsch-styled fruit, licorice, charcoal and spice box on both the nose and palate. Aged for 22 months in 100% new French oak and a big, broad shouldered, full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, it possesses a rocking mid-palate and fabulous length on the finish. Really showing the power of its Red Mountain terroir, it needs 4-5 years of bottle age to become civilized and will have decades of evolution. Drink 2017-2034.

Wine Advocate, Jeb Dunnuck, Issue 207