Tag Archives: Blend

Secret Squirrel 2013 Bordeaux Red

Blended Impulse

Secret Squirrel 2013 Bordeaux Red, Columbia Valley, Washington

Fellow wine lovers, Washington State is certainly among the best in the world at putting together scrumptious Bordeaux style blends. Today it’s a Bordeaux blend by Secret Squirrel, dominated by Cabernet and Merlot. They had a 2012 Bordeaux blend last year, but I didn’t feel the quality was on par with their other wines, however their recently release 2013 Bordeaux definitely makes the cut. If you’ve enjoyed their Cabernet and their GSM from our previous offers on Impulse, you’ll surely enjoy this one

Secret Squirrel 2013 Bordeaux Red $24.99

The Secret Squirrel 2013 Bordeaux red is a crowd pleaser. It’s comprised of the classic Bordeaux grapes Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, and Malbec, all sourced from the Corliss Estate vineyards, aged for 22 months in 35% new French oak. It’s medium-full in body, and smooth with lovely dark color. There are notes of blueberries, blackberry, black currants, and stewed black plumbs, followed by hints of vanilla, toast, and sage. The finish is clean, medium long, and shows hint of crushed rocks.

Click here to order the Secret Squirrel Bordeaux Red

Region: Columbia Valley AVA, Washington State Wine

Vineyard(s): Corliss Estate Vineyards

Grape(s): Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec

Aging: 22 Months in 35% New French Oak

Drinkability: Now through 2020

Body: Medium-Full

Alcohol: 14.5% by volume

Drink This if you Like: Avennia, Manu Propria, Numbskull



Deviled Impulse

Gorman Winery Devil You Know and Devil You Don’t Know

Fellow wine lovers, I’ve always viewed Chris Gorman, of Gorman Winery, as a prince of darkness of sorts, so naturally he’s returned to tempt us once again with the second vintage of last year’s guilty pleasure. He’s been experimenting a lot recently, and that’s led to a few new labels from him, including two new red wines: The Devil You Know, and The Devil You Don’t Know. They’re both red blends, with the Devil You Know (DYK) made using vineyards and vinification techniques standard to Gorman Winery, while the Devil You Don’t Know (DYDK) employs new fruit sources, and experimental winemaking- hence the names. 

Gorman Winery 2012 Devil You know Red 26.99 (Regularly $30)

Last year’s feature on Impulse didn’t include the DYK, as we weren’t able to get a hold of any. With much advanced planning this year, we’re featuring both wines in this devilish duo, which is great because each one offers something different and interesting. Between these two, the DYK is more typical of the Gorman wines, with an added component of value, as it’s among the few reds in his lineup under $40. While both of these two wines are rather drink-worthy, I will say that the DYK is my favorite this year, and I’m betting if will get higher scores from the wine media if it gets reviewed, though last year it was the DYDK which brought home the bacon with a 93 point score from Wine Spectator. 

In true Gorman style, the wine is smooth, lusty, and powerful. It’s tightly concentrated, and will definitely benefit from another year in the bottle before you crack it- or at least an hour or two in the decanter is advisable. A blend of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 13% Petite Sirah, and 8% Petit Verdot, its nose is dense with stewed red fruit, floral hints, and oak notes. The palate is a concerted display of stewed raspberries and strawberries, wild berry bramble, a typical Cabernet black peppercorn, and perfumed rose hips, while the indulgent aging in new French oak Barrels for 16 months produces a showing of baked vanilla. 

It’s great with a tenderloin, and should be drinking nicely for another five to seven years. Gorman only made 825 cases of this still unknown gem. 

Click here to order the Gorman Devil You Know  Devil You Know 2012 by Gorman Winery

Region: Columbia Valley, Washington State 
Grapes: 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 13% Petite Sirah & 8% Petit Verdot. 
Aging: Aged 16 months in French Oak Barrels 
Drinkability: Now through 2021 
Body: Medium-Full 
Alcohol: 14.7% by volume 
Drink This if you Like: Gorman Bully Cabernet 
Food Pairings: Tenderloin 
Production: 825 cases made 

Gorman Winery 2012 Devil You Don’t Know Red $26.99 (Regularly $30)

Ever intent on staying sharp, and never the type to sit still or get stuck in his ways, Gorman is using the DYDK label as experimental grounds. He ventured outside his comfort zone of Red Mountain, into the heart of the Columbia Valley to source fruit of a terroir which is distinct from the Gorman wines we’ve come to know. The body and mouthfeel here are a little lighter than the DYK, while again offering a great value proposition. The winemaking is nothing if not atypical of what we’ve come to know from this winemaker, exemplified best in the use of American oak barrels. All other Gorman wines have been aged exclusively in 100% French oak prior to the advent of the DYDK. French oak has garnered a reputation for being more subtle, and elegant, with a flavor profile which integrates better into wines, allowing the fruit to lead while the oak plays in back. American oak is known as the loud-mouth cousin who makes sure he’s always heard above others, and some are also said to taste of dill weed. Still, when used correctly, American oak is really flavorful, robust, and complex, and certain selections omit those herby dill flavors. The DYDK is a great example of what I consider to be a skilled usage of American oak. 

The DYDK is a little showier right now than the DYK, with lots of up character. Tons of candied black cherries, baked blackberries, and homemade pie jumping out immediately. The tannins are firm and can use another year in the bottle or hour in the decanter to calm them down. The blend of 52% Syrah, 17% Mourvedre, 17% Grenache & 14% Petite Sirah offers up lots of smoky spiciness and hints of flint, calling to be paired with smoked meats and salumi. The 16 months of aging in new American oak barrels have packed this red with an abundance of vanilla bean, toast, and deep mocha character. After opening up for a few hours, it shows delicious blueberry notes, with even more vanilla, half baked cookie dough, and hints of cedar. 

Click here to order The Gorman Devil You Don’t Know

Devil You Don’t Know 2012 by Gorman WineryRegion: Columbia Valley, Washington State 
Grapes: 52% Syrah, 17% Mourvedre, 17% Grenache & 14% Petite Sirah 
Aging: 16 months in New American Oak Barrels 
Drinkability: now through 2018 
Body: Medium-Full 
Alcohol: 15% by volume 
Drink This if you Like: Idle Hands, Napa Syrah 
Food Pairings: BBQ, smoked eats, salumi 
Production: 825 cases made