2012 Chaleur Estate 1.5L ENG
The 2012 Chaleur Estate is truly terrific, with classic Cabernet notes of blackcurrants, lead pencil shavings, tobacco, chocolate and damp earth. Almost Bordeaux-like in its structure and focus on the palate, it has nicely integrated acidity, beautiful concentration and plenty of tannic grip that comes through on the finish. While not lacking in texture or concentration, the overall impression here is one of focus, purity and balance, and it won't hit prime time for another 4-7 years. This is a young, beautifully put together Washing State Cabernet Sauvignon that will have 25 years or more of overall longevity.
The team at Delille, lead by longtime Washington wine steward Chris Upchurch, continue to produce and a great lineup of wines. Both the '12 and '13 here are classics, yet I think the nod has to go to the '12s, which have slightly more depth and richness. Nevertheless, these are all high quality and I think the Bordeaux blends are some of the most age-worthy in the state.
- Jeb Dunnuck for Robert Parker