Why so excited to be back at work? There's the obvious -- the nature of my work -- and then there's the sublime.
The concept of perfection in wine is just that: a concept. Nearly 100% of the time it has everything to do with the right people, place, timing, food, the whole experience leading to the whole pie. Nothing about a Monday morning in the shop typically lends itself to perfection except for what's in my glass today: Betz Heart of the Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 2015.
There is no "experience" to it, no dry-aged prime cooked to perfection, no group of favorite people to share it with. Just a glass of perfect Cabernet. I do not score wines. I will not score wines. But in case you are reading between the lines, this is as close as I've ever come to it with any Washington Cabernet I've written about in 15 years. Math makes my brain hurt so I'll keep it simple and maybe even a little obtuse: +2.
Perfumed and inviting, weighty and gliding, dense and lifted, complex in all the right ways and purely Cabernet in the only way. This is my perfect Cabernet. Each minute it's open yields an additional strata of intrigue and as I pause to write more, I realize minutes have passed and I'm still savoring the flavor. Everything else is wine-speak and this is much more about heart. It's not just "up there" with the top of the vintage; it is there.
98+ points Jeb Dunnuck:"Made from 100% Heart of the Hill Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon aged 20 months in new French oak, the inky colored 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Heart of the Hill is a spectacular wine that's up with the crème de la crème of the vintage. Blackcurrants, blackberries, crushed rocks, graphite, and lead pencil notes all emerge from this full-bodied, rich, opulent, powerful Cabernet Sauvignon that's going to keep for 2-3 decades. Bravo."
Annoyingly limited for how much I love it -- please take that into account should you read this and want some of it. I am annoyed having to include that it's a (very) limited, but without warning you I face certain annoyed emails and calls.
More about Heart of the Hill from Betz: Tasting through our 2015 Bordeaux style wines, the 2015 Heart of the Hill Cabernet Sauvignon stands out immediately with the deepest, brightest, purple magenta hue in the lineup. The aromas are equally brooding, offering intense cassis and black currant fruit wrapped in an array of spice notes from wood smoke, cocoa nib, espresso bean, anise to the savory notes of hoisin, beef broth, and tea leaf. The palate offers the richest, weightiest mouthful of Cabernet in our cellar. A greater degree of extract demands a longer rest in the cellar, but may ultimately live the longest of any of our wines.
Unlike Père de Famille Cabernet Sauvignon, which is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon barrels from accross the Columbia Valley, our Heart of the Hill Cabernet Sauvignon bottling allows us to show off one grape variety from one unique site. We hope you enjoy the contrast as much as we do.
2015 marks our 7th harvest of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from Heart of the Hill Vineyard on Red Mountain. In these few years we've learned much about the impact of vineyard parcel, harvest date, and cellar handling. Over the past two vintages, we've assembled this wine exclusively from blocks of this vineyard.
I'm looking forward to helping you with an order. Thanks for reading!
Some wines speak to the past, some are here and now, others offer glimpses at how the Willamette Valley might evolve. Only one winery encompasses it all–storied past, delicious present, thrilling future: Eyrie.
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Purple Wine Company, Inc., a California limited liability company, and its AVALON brand are not in any way affiliated with Avalon Wine, Inc, an Oregon corporation, or Avalon Wine's store at its physical location in Oregon.
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