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2014 Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Columbia Valley 2014

“After the Floods”

Vintage 2014 ... 2014 was an extremely warm vintage, achieving very rich and ripe character in the Cabernet Sauvignon - producing black cherry, blackberry, and black currant flavors.

Varietal Blend ... 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 1% Malbec, and 1% red blend used as barrel topping wine.

Vineyards ... From 11 vineyards located in the most prestigious growing regions of southeastern Washington: Walla Walla Valley (including the Cadaretta estate Southwind Vineyard), Red Mountain, and Horse Heaven Hills.

Barrel Aging ... 52% of the blend was barrel aged for 23 months in second and third fill barrels; 48% of the blend was aged for 11 months on new French oak tank staves (to add more new oak character) before being barreled down for the final 12 months in second and third fill barrels.

Tasting Notes

Blackberry and black cherry aromas dominate the nose with a moderate level of toasty vanilla from oak aging. A rich mouthfeel (with nicely rounded tannins) is complemented by notes of blackberry, black currant, and black cherry. There are hints of tanned leather and vanilla joining the dark fruit character on the finish.

INCONCEIVABLE should, perhaps, be called “Conceived At Last!” These are wines produced and bottled by and for Middleton Family Wines. We imagined them, then considered our grape sourcing and winemaking, and declared them INCONCEIVABLE … and set about finding ways to make them anyway. It’s taken us five years to figure out this Cabernet Sauvignon.

INCONCEIVABLE WINES encourage discovery, each labeled with a map indicating physical landmarks and historic events to guide the intrepid explorer; each with aromas and flavors offering sensory landmarks to guide the curious wine lover.

pH at bottling: 3.73
TA at bottling g/L: 6.5
Alcohol: 14.5%
Bottling Date: August 2016 (in Walla Walla, Washington)
Cases Produced: 1,962 (12 X 750ml)

INCONCEIVABLE WINES are always “of a place.”

They have distinctive aromas and flavors indigenous and inherent to where they are grown. Our labels identify place-clues for exploring the wine within the bottle.

Inconceivable Winemaker Kendall Mix

Long long long ago, an Ice Age ice dam burst and released Lake Missoula. Lake Missoula was pretty much where Idaho's Lake Pend Oreille is today. Only it was lots bigger.

Anyway, when the ice dam would burst (more than once) a 400 foot high wall of water would rush across the Scablands of eastern Washington. It hurtled west to the Pacific, carving the landscape and depositing soil (and other stuff) along the way. Voila! The Columbia Valley AVAs.

Meanwhile, some 500 miles north and a wee bit west, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada (which hadn't been named yet), Kendall Mix was waiting to be born. He waited a long long long time.

After Kendall was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, he was raised there. His family enjoyed wine at meal-times. But it never occurred to Kendall that he could be a winemaker. After all, his family didn't own a vineyard.

"Never occurred" is not really correct, however. Because in Kendall's senior year studying Microbiology at the University of Alberta he enrolled in an elective course: "Introduction to Brewing & Winemaking." And it did, then, occur to him.

And the rest is history!

U.C.Davis to study viticulture and enology, studies into the effects of nitrogen fertilization and the formation of ethyl carbamite in wine, Robert Mondavi Winery, RH Phillips Vineyard, Chateau Ste. Michelle (north to the land of the Missoula Floods!), Canoe Ridge Vineyard, Corliss Estate, Tranche Cellars, Goose Ridge Estate Winery … and Kendall's own tiny family winery, Lawrelin.

"Ah," sighed a Walla Walla wine man. "We're making too much top quality Washington red wine! If only we could persuade someone like Kendall Mix to join us, I'm sure he could help us figure it out. But that's inconceivable! He is so talented, in-demand, and Canadian!"

Kendall heard of that wine man's plight, and thought, "I could help. Although I am Canadian-born, and I do love ice hockey and lacrosse, inconceivably, I could be their Walla Walla winemaker, too. It would be a simple slap shot for me."

And, so it is.

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