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Bruce K

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WTN: Two two from from Walla Walla

by Bruce K » Mon May 15, 2006 4:33 pm

Walla Walla Vintners 1999 Walla Walla Valley Merlot (gift, think it sells for ~$25)
There is nice cherry/berry on the nose and palate, with oak noticeable but not as dominant as in some other wines I’ve had from this producer. This has good earth, adequate acidity, smooth texture and decent structure. It’s an excellent match with barbecued chicken. Three days later, a little more oak is evident along with some high-toned elements on the nose; otherwise, it’s similar to before. I would still prefer less oak and have always had a Miles-like attitude toward Merlot, but this is not bad for its style.

Morrison Lane 2002 Walla Walla Valley Counoise (gift, no idea what it costs)
Never had a 100 percent Counoise before. This is very rich and intense with black cherry, lots of spice, and some smoke, earth, briary and chocolate elements. It is medium-bodied, with a fairly thick texture and low to moderate acidity. The 14.7 percent alcohol is not that obvious but still higher than I’d like it. There is some oak but it’s not overdone and is well-integrated. It does go well with homemade burritos. Two days later, had the rest of the bottle after finishing the WWV Merlot. The contrast was interesting, because this was brighter, more red fruited, a bit more acidic, less oaky, and to my palate, more enjoyable. The texture is viscous, but it’s not too heavy and is reasonably balanced. If the price isn't too high, I'd consider buying a bottle or two.
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Randy Buckner

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Re: WTN: Two two from from Walla Walla

by Randy Buckner » Mon May 15, 2006 4:57 pm

My note:

2002 Morrison Lane, Counoise, Walla Walla Valley, Washington, $NA. Aromas and flavors convey bright red cherry fruit and white pepper. Crisp, with rounded tannins, there's a lot going on with this wine; 90/90. Danged price wasn't even listed at the winery.
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Bruce K

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Re: WTN: Two two from from Walla Walla

by Bruce K » Mon May 15, 2006 5:20 pm

Interesting. I found it darker and heavier the first day, but the second time it was redder and brighter, quite close to your notes; I noticed spice while you noticed white pepper. Probably just shows you have a more precise palate.

I just checked their website and it doesn't list any Counoise for sale. Based on the prices of their other single varietals, my guess is this would go for ~$25; high by my standards but not too bad by Walla Walla standards. I do like the fact that, unlike most others in the area, Morrison Lane produces wine exclusively, it seems, from their own vineyard, and I also like the fact that they've planted a lot of non-traditional grapes for the area, including Barbera, Dolcetto and Nebbiolo. I'm sure many of these experiments will produce "interesting" (in the Scandinavian use of the term) wines, rather than great ones, but vive la difference. Who needs another oaky Merlot specialist?

I'll be out there in August and definitely plan to stop by their tasting room.
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MtBakerDave

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Re: WTN: Two two from from Walla Walla

by MtBakerDave » Mon May 15, 2006 8:03 pm

Bruce K wrote:I'll be out there in August and definitely plan to stop by their tasting room.


Be sure to call ahead and ask if Dean will be playing any live jazz while you're there. I've never heard a performance, but I've heard a rehersal and they sounded pretty good!

Dave
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Bruce K

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Re: WTN: Two two from from Walla Walla

by Bruce K » Mon May 15, 2006 10:08 pm

Will do. Nice to know they're multi-talented.

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