Three 08 Stickies

Hello friends. During much of the year, we lovers of sticky wines face a conundrum: when to open the bottle. A little goes a long way with dessert wines, and it usually takes a big group even to finish off a split. But now we’re entering the holiday season, the time of large gatherings; a perfect time of year to open these wines as an exclamation point (or maybe an ellipsis) to an evening shared with family and friends.

2008 Forgeron Cellars Late-Harvest Semillon 375ml

Harvested on Halloween of 2008, this is 100% Les Collines Vineyard Semillon, allowed to ferment slowly and coolly to retain freshness and delicacy. This is something of an ode to Sauternes (where Semillon is typically the predominant grape, blended with small amounts of Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle).

It was Paul Gregutt’s review of this wine in the November Wine Enthusiast that spurred me to seek out a sample:

Wine Enthusiast (Paul Gregutt): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 94pts.”

I have mentioned a few times that 2008 was an excellent acid vintage for Washington whites, and that becomes even more important when we’re talking about sticky wines. It’s the peppy acid in this glass that balances out the ripe fruit sweetness and turns this wine into a transcendent elixir of honey-drenched marmalade and fig newton filling. Luxurious and palate-coating with a finish that won’t quit. First come first served up to 6 bottles, and we should have the wine in the warehouse in about a week, at which point it will be available for pickup or shipping.

2008 Brian Carter Cellars “Opulento” (Port-Style) 375ml

Many American winemakers make “port-style” wines, which frequently (and frighteningly) means letting Cabernet Sauvignon grapes ripen until they’re raisins and then squeezing some high-octane juice out of them. But that’s not Brain Carter’s style. He is a known devotee of European regional blends, so it comes as no surprise that he is using the same varietals grown in the Douro in Portugal. This is a fortified (20% alc) blend of 90% Touriga Nacional and 10% Sousao, all from Lonesome Springs Vineyard in the Yakima Valley.

The result is a ruby-port-styled wine, with an alluring nose of plum, fig, and dried cherry and apricot. The palate sees rich flavors of high-cacao chocolate, fig, date, orange peel, and even some mineral notes. This is luscious, coating every square inch of the palate. The length and intensity are impressive.

Only 4 barrels of this were made, and the winery sold their entire stock during their November release weekends. I have access to a small parcel, and this will not be available for reorder. Please limit order requests to 3 bottles, and we will do our best to fulfill all requests. We should have the wine in the warehouse in about a week, at which point it will be available for pickup or shipping.

2008 Dunham Cellars Late Harvest Riesling Lewis Vineyard 375ml

Original offering here (we first offered this in September).

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (Jay Miller): “($19); [REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 92pts.”

First come first served up to 6 bottles, and we should have the wine in the warehouse in about a week, at which point it will be available for pickup or shipping.

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