Special Varietal Spotlight: MOURVÈDRE

EMERGING VARIETAL
Mourvèdre
Mourvèdre is the workhorse of the vineyard. It is added to Rhône blends to bring an earthy note or to create a backbone of tannin. When Mourvèdre is used in rosés for its minerality and lack of full fruit, these superlight pink, sometimes pale orange wines are stony with light fruit of rhubarb and peach. The red wines made from Mourvèdre tend to be tannic, higher in alcohol and have gamey or earthy notes. Although we do highlight Mourvèdre from the Horse Heaven Hills (see page 93) because it grows particularly well there, we wanted to spotlight this often unsung grape in a variety of AVAs. Each wine had to contain 75 percent or more to be labeled Mourvèdre, giving us a chance to experience this interesting wine from a broad range of growing regions. This was an “open submission” tasting (details below).
Milbrandt Vineyards 2009 The Estates Mourvèdre, Wahluke Slope, $28
97 percent Mourvèdre, 2 percent Merlot, 1 percent Malbec
Watermill 2009 Estate Mourvèdre, Walla Walla Valley, $28
100 percent Mourvèdre
Maison Bleue 2012 Rosé of Mourvèdre, Yakima Valley, Olsen Vineyard, $20
100 percent Mourvèdre
H/H Robert Andrews 2010 Mourvèdre Estate Reserve, Horse Heaven Hills, Coyote Canyon Vineyard, $38
85 percent Mourvèdre, 3 percent Syrah, 10 percent Grenache, 2 percent Cinsault
Chateau Ste. Michelle 2010 Mourvèdre, Columbia Valley, $35
87 percent Mourvèdre, 13 percent Syrah

Read Seattle magazine's Eighth Annual Washington Wine Awards story here.

Read about the Best Wines of Washington's Winegrowing Regions.

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