Northstar 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley
Northstar's focus on creating world-class Bordeaux-style wines begins in the vineyards, where winemaker David "Merf" Merfeld selects the best of the classic blending varietals to create Northstar's acclaimed Columbia Valley and Walla Walla Merlots, but he also takes time to produce the finest expressions of each of these single varietals. We are pleased to showcase the unique characteristics of these varietals in extremely limited bottlings each vintage. The 2011 vintage experienced cool temperatures during spring which delayed bud break and bloom by three to four weeks. Consistently warm summer temperatures lengthened the ripening period resulting in harvest starting three weeks later than normal. Without the growing season's typical temperature spikes that surpass 100 degrees Fahrenheit, grapes ripened very evenly with the required sugar levels and ideal physiological maturity. Diversity of vineyards and sub-appellations within the Columbia Valley are Northstar's hallmarks. Fruit is selected from the very best possible sources. Cabernet Sauvignon from some of our favorite vineyards go into the blend. In 2011, fruit was sourced from outstanding crops at Cold Creek Vineyard and Klipsun Vineyard. Grapes were destemmed, crushed, and inoculated with Premier Cuvee yeast to begin the eight-day fermentation. The must was punched down daily during fermentation, and was then racked into barrels to undergo malolactic fermentation. Racking occurred every three months for clarity during the 21-month aging in 85% French and 15% American oak – 60% of the barrels were new. Wine Enthusiast Magazine said "Coming from two of the state's finest vineyards—Cold Creek and Klipsun—this cool-vintage, 100% varietal wine shows an unusual Washington Cabernet profile of blueberry and plum along with herbs and a kiss of vanilla. It's soft and supple in feel with elegant coffee and blue fruit flavors."