An aromatic powerhouse, the 2017 Grand Passage is effusive with black fruit and brambly wild berry aromas, with notions of bay leaf, juniper and olive adding nuance and complexity. A flood of juicy dark fruit saturates the palate, while expanding tannins create a richly layered texture. Brooding and resonant, with flavors of huckleberry, cassis, juniper and nutmeg, this stunning wine possesses a classic Old World structure, draped with New World ripeness and intensity. A blend of rich, concentrated, and elegant blocks of Cabernet Sauvingon from the Red Mountain AVA. The initial blend is crafted 3-4 months after harvest, then refined over the next two years through barrel selection.
A cold winter resulted in a later start to the season, with budbreak in late April and bloom in early June. The cool weather continued into spring, resulting in slow and measured growth and a smaller-than-average crop. Temperatures warmed up beautifully in summer, but with no significant heat events the fruit was able to ripen at an ideal pace. The perfect conditions continued into fall, providing abundant hangtime. With lower yields, the 2017 wines have incredible concentration and unusually plush tannins. At the same time, the smaller crop resulted in excellent natural acidity, producing wines with grace and vibrant freshness.