2008 Andrew Will Cellars Proprietary Red Ciel du Cheval Vineyard

Year: 2008
Appellation: Red Mountain, Yakima Valley
Country: USA - Washington
Wine Spectator: 92
Wine Advocate: 93
Vinous Media: 92
Red Wine
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36% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 32% Cabernet Franc

"This has a serious grip of tannins around a rumbling core of blackberry, licorice and pepper flavors, pushing through the firm finish. Needs time, but should eventually gain elegance. Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2013 through 2020." (WS)

"The vineyard blends begin with the 2008 Ciel du Cheval. It is composed of 36% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 32% Cabernet Franc. Alluring aromas of pain grille, pencil lead, violets, incense, black currant, and blackberry inform the nose of a spicy, layered, impeccably balanced and structured wine that will benefit from 3-4 years of cellaring.

Andrew Will, located on Vashon Island, a short ferry-ride from Seattle, is where Chris Camarda fashions his blended, Bordeaux-style wines. In the 2008 vintage Camarda began producing two varietal wines at a lower price point due to the recession. In 2009 he has done the same but with vineyard designations." (WA)

"(36% merlot and 32% each cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon) Good deep red-ruby. Musky aromas of currant, smoked meat and coffee. Juicy, spicy and bright, with firm acids giving definition and lift to the soil-driven flavors of currant, black cherry and cocoa powder. Quite primary and tight, and seriously tannic on the back end, where the wine's slightly exotic flavors really saturate the mouth. This boasts superb potential. (Chris Camarda was not ready to show his other 2008 reds, as he did not plan to release them until next spring.) Incidentally, Camarda presented a vertical collection of his Ciel du Cheval Vineyard wine in Seattle in July, and it was clear that he has taken these wines to a higher level beginning with 2006 (and especially 2007), but I also gave high marks to past vintages like '05, '03, '01 and '00. I also raised my score for the 2007 to 93 points, from 92 in Issue 147. These wines, classic and often austere in the early going, demand, and repay, five to seven years of bottle aging." (IWC)