Vineyard Shot

Accolades

Accolades for Cabernet Sauvignon

Full Pull Reviews 2004 Champoux Cabernet Sauvignon

"...layers of flavors that unfolded over the palate from attack to midpalate to finish; there was black fruit, blue fruit, minerals, coffee, earth, smoke, tropical fruits; & the mouthfeel was liquid silk..."

Paul Zitarelli, Full Pull Wines, January 2010

 

"Hello friends. Today's offering is an exciting one for me, as I have been trying for some time to locate a decent-sized parcel of this wine. There are only 15 bottles currently available in Seattle; not enough for a proper offering. But I managed to get my hands on a much larger lot, & I'm very happy to pass it along to you.

 

The reason I have been seeking this wine is that Sean Sullivan named it his #1 "Wine of the Year" for 2009. Sean is the author of Washington Wine Report, & if you're not reading his work on a regular basis, you should be. WWR is an independent blog focused on Washington wine, & it is a truly comprehensive information source for anyone with interest in this state's wine industry. The blog features tasting notes on a regular basis, & there are other excellent recurring features, such as Washington Wine Round-Up (a collection of Washington wine-related stories from across the internet); a monthly Virtual Tasting (where Sean & his readers try the same wine at the same time); & a monthly "Five Under Fifteen" feature (an analysis of Washington wines from the lower price tiers).

 

WWR is one of my go-to blogs that I try to read every single day, & I have tasted enough wine with Sean now to trust his palate without question. So when he calls out a single wine as his Wine of the Year & I can get my hands on it, I'm going to. Here is what Sean wrote back in July after first tasting Forgeron's Champoux Cab during Spring Release: "Almost completely opaque. Violets, tobacco, funk, & earth emerge on the nose. Packs a gigantic punch on the taste. A complete whopper. Almost completely overwhelms all senses & then comes back & sails. ** Score." (Note: In Sean's rating system, ** is the highest possible rating, representing what he calls "an exceptional wine.")

 

And here is the "Wine of the Year" writeup from December: "Of the many wines I tasted this year, none wowed me more than this gem from Marie-Eve Gilla at Forgeron. As I described in my original post, this was a wine that literally brought all conversation to a stop. From one of Washington's finest vineyards & one of its finest winemakers."

 

Champoux Vineyard Cabernet is the fruit by which all other Cabernets in this state are judged. During my December research trip, I had a chance to stop briefly & snap a few pictures of the gnarled old vines of Block 1 Champoux Cabernet Sauvignon. I felt like I was standing on hallowed ground.

 

I recently had a chance to try this wine myself, & it was an impressive effort indeed (not surprising to any of us who tried Marie-Eve's 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon, a very early Full Pull offering). What was notable for me were the layers of flavors that unfolded over the palate from attack to midpalate to finish; there was black fruit, blue fruit, minerals, coffee, earth, smoke, tropical fruits; & the mouthfeel was liquid silk - just a complete palate-stainer. This is 100% Champoux Cabernet, & only 175 cases were produced. It's also worth noting that this is a one-off wine; Marie-Eve has not made a Champoux Cab since 2004, so this is a unique chance to experience a potent combination of a top winemaker working with the finest raw materials.

 

Jay Miller also dug this wine. Here he is, writing in Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD.] 94 pts.""

 

Paul Zitarelli, Full Pull Wines, January 2010