“Palengat” Red Wine
We continued the Merlot-forward approach from last year’s Palengat, but because we’re always reaching for a better, more focused expression of the Columbia Valley AVA, this year we included fruit from the Palengat, Champoux, and Tapteil vineyards into the blend. This intense, Merlot-based wine deftly balances the savory with the sweet, displaying floral black cherry and huckleberry fruit along with notes of chocolate ganache, smoke, and cedar, and enough acidity to balance the fruitiness and help the wine to age gracefully. Aged in 100 percent new French oak for 21 months, it is a blend of 61 percent Merlot, 26 perent Cabernet Sauvignon, 9 percent Cabernet Franc, and 4 percent Petit Verdot. It should be at its peak through 2025.
Paul Golitzin, Director of Winemaking
"A blend of 61% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc and the balance Petit Verdot, the 2011 Palengat Proprietary Red Wine has a great bouquet of sweet plum liqueur, blackberry, graphite, lead pencil shavings and toast. This is followed by a full-bodied effort that has beautiful concentration (especially in the vintage), loads of texture and ripe underlying tannic structure. Reasonably approachable now, it will nevertheless evolve gracefully on its overall balance. Enjoy bottles over the coming 10-15 years. Always producing some of the finest Bordeaux blends in any vintage, owners/winemakers Alex and Paul Golitzin continue to keep Quilceda Creek at the pinnacle of Cabernet Sauvignon in Washington State with these 2011s and 2012s. Looking at their 2011s, yields were down close to 40%, and this shows with the wines possessing gorgeous depth, richness and concentration. While Paul feels his 2011s are just as concentrated as his 2010s, the overall impression between these two cool vintages is distinctly different and the 2011s show much more up-front, perfumed and supple profiles. As always, the tannin management here is second to none and while the 2011s have plenty of tannin, you have to hunt for it as they're incredibly polished and silky. These 2011s will be approachable at an earlier stage than normal, yet evolve gracefully on their overall balance. Looking at the 2012s, I was blown away by these samples, which were shipped to Colorado and then followed for multiple days. Described as a "good" and "welcome" vintage by Paul, the wines have blockbuster levels of concentration and richness, yet stay beautifully pure, elegant and focused. They're up there with the creme de la creme from this fantastic estate. Don't miss them. Alcohols here are in the 15.5 range (with the 2011 around 15), but you'd never know it from tasting the wines. The big news at this estate is that with vineyard-owner Paul Champoux retiring, the Golitzin's were able to increase their ownership in the Champoux Vineyard from 40% to 66%. Other owners here include Powers, Andrew Will and Woodward Canyon. How this affects the overall production levels is yet to be determined, but a top producer getting more grapes from a top site is never a bad thing from a consumer standpoint." Drink: 2014 - 2029