2013 Claret

With the Claret you get more complexity, more fruit, more texture—a little bit more of everything—than you might expect from a wine at this price point. It’s a gently oaked, medium-full bodied wine with great texture and a long, graceful finish. The flavor profile is classic, approachable, and incredibly consistent year after year. Expect to taste plenty of ripe fruit—plum, currant, blackberry, strawberry—with hints of vanilla, clove and tobacco. This wine is designed to be drinkable, now and well into its teenage years.

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"Firm and focused, with crinkly tannins around a sleek core of blackberry, currant and plum flavors that keep singing on the expressive finish. This has room to grow."

93 points - Harvey Steinman, Wine Spectator

Tasting Notes

Exotically perfumed with floral red fruits like raspberry puree and red currants mixed with sweet strawberry and crème brulee. Swirling releases rich blackberry, currants and plums with a hint of vanilla bean spice. The palate is thick and sweetly rich with perfect balance and long graceful finish. The 2012 was powerfully ripe and very Cabernet driven, this is all about grace and texture.

Scores & Reviews

"This wine is a blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Cabernet Franc, 11% Merlot, 3% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot. It opens with intriguing aromas of graphite, cherry, barrel spice, garden herbs, coffee grounds and dark fruit. The flavors are pitch black and generous, showing density and layering."
- Sean Sullivan, Wine Enthusiast

"Readers looking for a longer-term prospect should check out the 2013 Claret (57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Cabernet Franc, 11% Merlot and the rest Malbec and Petit Verdot), which is firm, concentrated and structured; it has plenty of oak in its tobacco leaf, incense, and crème de cassis aromas and flavors. Give this full-bodied 2013 about 5-6 years of cellaring and drink over the following decade."
- Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Advocate

"Bright, deep ruby-red. Perfumed, oaky aromas of blackberry, licorice, violet, dark chocolate and graphite minerality. Plush, fine-grained and moderately sweet in the mouth, with the dark berry flavors lifted by enticing floral perfume and nicely framed by sound acidity for the year. Really builds subtly on the long, smooth, savory back end, which features suave, building tannins and lingering black fruits."
- Stephen Tanzer, Vinous

Wine Facts

Appellation:

Columbia Valley

Vineyard(s):

Dionysus, Stillwater Creek, Hedges Family Estate, Bel’villa, Canyons, Pepper Bridge, Blue Mountain, Bacchus, Weinbau

Varietal Composition:

54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot, 5% Syrah, 3% Malbec, 3% Petit Verdot

Aging:

47% new, 53% used French oak for 19 months

Alcohol:

14.7%

Cases Produced:

2,129

Drinkability:

Spring 2016 – 2026

Trade Materials

Additional Information about this vintage

Ranked 27 on Wine Spectators top 100 list.

Vineyard Practices: Our decision-making process for every vintage starts in the fields. We’ve cultivated a great vineyard program with sites chosen for their unique characteristics and their consistency. These are growers that we have eight, nine, ten-year relationships with, and we source from all across Washington state—Columbia Valley, Yakima Valley, Walla Walla, Red Mountain, Royal Slope, Wahluke Slope. This diversity enables us to be incredibly choosy about what goes into our blends and to produce a wine that is remarkably consistent in its presentation.

Winemaking Practices: The scale of our vineyard program and the sophistication of our facility enable us to produce this blend at a more accessible volume while maintaining nuanced control and attention to craft. As a Bordeaux style, Claret goes back to the very roots of blending wine, and putting it together is a patient, meticulous, multi-week process. When we’re crafting the aromatics and the taste of the Claret, we’re looking to create a wine that is elegant, understandable and enjoyable for any consumer anywhere in the world.

The Vintage: 2013 was the warmest vintage since 2003, but it cooled off just in time for harvest. The resulting wines were less likely to tip over into overripe flavors or high alcohol levels, and picking proceeded at a normal pace. Growers let canopies spread a bit more than usual and adjusted crop sizes to achieve the kind of balance they wanted. With a cooling trend that started in mid-September, red wines come with ripe flavors, moderate alcohol levels and vivid acidity.

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