Welcome to 2013, my fellow wine enthusiasts! It is Wine Wednesday, and time to put up a review! Not that I really need that as an excuse to pop open a bottle of wine :) My previous post I believe informed you of what a hectic holiday season this has been for me. And then my phone died on New Years Eve… As it turns out, that was a much-needed blessing and gave me a chance to finally calm down. So tonight I decided to follow through and open up this 2010 Maryhill Winemaker’s Red Blend. I had some reservations, 2009 is known as a good year for Washington wine; 2010 was a rough year for some wineries. The harvest was not as plentiful with lots of wet weather, lower overall temperatures, all followed by an early frost. Those familiar with Washington wines (I won’t speak for other states) can often tell you that 2010 was a hit-and-miss year. But do not let this deter you! I, thankfully, have not. While I have decided to wait to try again when 2011 vintage rolls out, few are this way; Maryhill is not one of them and have been recognized for some 2010 vintages (check out the Seattle Wine Awards at www.seattlewineawards.com). The winery hails from the Columbia Valley, and though I’ve yet to make it there myself (my husband and mom rave about the winery), I hear how it is quite the site to behold. I’ve driven by it, and what I’ve seen is quite gorgeous. Up at the winery you will find the Maryhill Museum, a re-creation of Stone Henge, and of course, Maryhill Winery. The current owners opened the winery for business in 2001, and in 2009 was named “Washington Winery of the Year.” The biggest downside to living in Spokane: being a minimum of four hours away from wine country, and thus, from Maryhill.
Right off the bat, the nose of the Winemakers Red is full of oak. As I begin a fervid swirling of the glass, I don’t need to stick my nose in to start getting aromas of black cherry and earthy tobacco. The wine is a bit tight right away, so give it a few minutes, or a run through an aerator (I do not own one, I let time do the job). On the palate, this wine welcomes you with notes of black cherry and bakers chocolate. On the sweet- to- dry scale, I would place this on the upper side of dry, though not overly so. Tannins are firm, yet yield nicely to a smooth finish with hints of licorice and oak. This wine is surprisingly smooth and well-balanced for it’s lower price point, and becomes even more so the longer it breathes. The red blend is composed of 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 20% Syrah, and 10% Cabernet Franc.
Overall, the Maryhill Winemaker’s Red blend is an excellent everyday drinking red wine. I rate this wine strongly, and feel for the price (ranging anywhere from $10 to $15), it is certainly a great buy! My mom had needed a wine to bring to a work Christmas dinner. Fearing she’d offend their “upper end status” (her words, more or less), she chose the Maryhill Proprietor’s Reserve Zinfandel (I may review it later). Had we known her more generous gift would have been met with “oh yes, just place it over there with the others….” I gladly would have encouraged her to save a few bucks and give this wine, and keep the more expensive bottle for herself. If you are looking for a good study companion, a relaxing dinner at home with your other half (or self), or just “because!” do choose this wine the next you are out and about. Though quite frankly, I’m still happy to provide this at a girls night out, as this wine lends itself to a variety of settings. The Winemaker’s Red is widely available in many grocery stores, as well as online at http://www.maryhillwinery.com, in case you can’t find it elsewhere.
Maryhill 2010 Winemaker’s Red Blend: ★★★★★ Exceptional wine!
Seattle Wine Awards gave Maryhill a Double Gold Award for this same 2010 vintage. Congratulations, Craig and Vicki!
Winemakers Notes: Aromas of black cherry and cane berries mix with vanilla, tobacco and some earthen notes. Silky black cherry, bittersweet chocolate, anise and an enticing finish await on the palate. Pair with everyday fare or sip on any day that ends in “Y”.
Welcome, once again, to 2013! Happy Drinking and cheers!
Have you tried this wine before? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!