Review of Washington Wines by Rand Sealey
2014 Mansion Creek Cellars Sangiovese, Columbia Valley ($32)
This is an attractively styled Sangio. Brick red colored, it possesses rich aromas of raspberry, cherry and plum with scents of rosebuds, mulberry, tobacco, rosemary and incense. The flavors, as well, are appealing, with supple yet distinctive red fruits that are intermixed with licorice, cocoa, Italian roast and earth. The back picks up macerated berries, roasted hazelnuts, and touches of kidskin and graphite, followed by a chewy dryish Tuscan-like finish. 18.5/20 points.
2014 Mansion Creek Cellars Barbera, Columbia Valley ($34)
Sourced from the Sagemoor Vineyard, this Barbera offers a deep ruby color and a rich nose of cherry, plum, black currant, black roses, sweet pea flowers, mulberry, dark sweet tobacco and pepper. The flavors mirror the aromatics with generous, yet robust dark fruits that are marked by licorice, cocoa, Italian roast and stony minerals. The back picks up notes of semi dried tart cherries (a trait of Barbera), grilled nuts and dried orange peel, with touches of leather and spice, followed by a Piedmont-like dryish tannin finish. 18.5/20 points.
2014 Mansion Creek Cellars Syrah, Walla Walla Valley ($38)
Sourced from the Pepper Bridge Vineyard, this Syrah has a lot of character. Deep purplish colored, it possesses rich aromas of blackberries, blueberries and black currants and scents of black roses, mulberry, lavender, sweet pea flowers and oriental incense. On the palate, true to variety flavors mirror the aromatics with vivid, mouth filling black and blue fruits that are imbued with black licorice, dark cocoa, French roast and loam and gravel minerals. The saturation continues on the back with sensations of macerated berries, roasted nuts, crème de cassis, dried blueberries, and charcoal, followed by a lingering, spice dusted sweet-dry tannin finish. 19/20 points.
2011 Mansion Creek Cellars Reserve Syrah, Walla Walla Valley ($40)
This late release exhibits a purplish ruby color and a smoky nose of wild fruits – blackberries, huckleberries, black currants – with scents of crushed roses, mulberry, sweet tobacco, garrigue, orange peel, peppercorns and spiced incense. The black and blue fruit flavors are thick and true to variety, with intermixtures of licorice, dark cocoa, dark roast coffee grounds and minerally, loamy earth. The saturation continues on the back with roasted berries and nus, mocha, leather, crème de cassis and recurring dried orange peel, culminating in a lingering, savory dryish yet ripe tannin finish. 19/20 points