Aquilini Family Blend 2017
Lush. Layered. Fresh. Bright aromas of African espresso, raspberries, and rose powder burst from the glass. The wine is balanced with well-integrated acidity and framed by firm, ripe tannins. Energetic and fresh, this wine is approachable in its youth yet will age gracefully over the next decade.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Though the wine is still locked up tight, swirling coaxes out aromas of blackberry, graphite, wood spice, licorice, dried herbs and menthol. The flavors are rich and full-bodied. The tannins give a firm, dry, almost unyielding grip. There’s plenty of acidity to stand it all up. Patience is required here. Don’t touch before 2028.
Aquilini is the name of the family, the company, and represents their best foot forward. It’s the epitome of Red Mountain, bold, tannic, full-bodied and meant to just be the beginning of many more vintages and continued critical acclaim.
A coveted source of top quality red grapes among premier Washington producers, the Red Mountain AVA is actually the smallest appellation in the state. As its name might suggest, it is actually neither a mountain nor is it composed of red earth. Instead the appellation is an anticline of the Yakima fold belt, a series of geologic folds that define a number of viticultural regions in the surrounding area. It is on the eastern edge of Yakima Valley with slopes facing southwest towards the Yakima River, ideal for the ripening of grapes. The area’s springtime proliferation of cheatgrass, which has a reddish color, actually gives the area the name, "Red" Mountain.
Red Mountain produces some of the most mineral-driven, tannic and age-worthy red wines of Washington and there are a few reasons for this. It is just about the hottest appellation with normal growing season temperatures commonly reaching above 90F. The soil is particularly poor in nutrients and has a high pH, which results in significantly smaller berry sizes compared to varietal norms. The low juice to skin ratio in smaller berries combined with the strong, dry summer winds, leads to higher tannin levels in Red Mountain grapes.
The most common red grape varieties here are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah, among others. Limited white varieties are grown, namely Sauvignon blanc.
The reds of the area tend to express dark black and blue fruit, deep concentration, complex textures, high levels of tannins and as previously noted, have good aging capabilities.
One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, the best of these are densely hued, fragrant, full of fruit and boast a structure that begs for cellar time. Somm Secret—Blends from Bordeaux are generally earthier compared to those from the New World, which tend to be fruit-dominant.