Elevage Wine Co.
2009 Raised By Wolves Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Sauvignon •Lowden Hills & 7 Hills Vineyards
Washington: Walla Walla Valley
What We Say
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Mission Codename: Hungry like the Wolf
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Send Agent Red to the Columbia Valley, in Washington state, in search of a delicious Cabernet Sauvignon for our Operatives
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Elevage Wine Co.
Wine Subject: 2009 Raised By Wolves Cabernet Sauvignon
Winemaker: Bill Davis
The Columbia Valley is the largest appellation in Washington state and completely contains both the Yakima (as well as the city of Yakima) and Walla Walla Valleys. Located inland on a plateau of undulating hills and valleys and given is dry climate (nearly 300 days of sunshine per year) and northern longitude has nearly two hours more sun per day during the summer than Napa Valley. The region is known for growing excellent Chardonnay, Merlot and, as in today’s wine, Cabernet Sauvignon.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Stunningly dark and , with a distinct crimson color, from its edges through to its darkening heart. When swirled, thick wine-stained tears ring the glass and descend very slowly to the surface below.
Smell – Luscious jammy berry pie aromas leap from the glass. These are followed by ripe and sweet blackberry, black cherry, and licorice root. Beneath these, soft hints of baking spices, burnt creme brulee and toasty oak.
Feel – Soft, plush and generous, this wine has a crushed velvet feel that, combined with well-developed tannins, give the wine a medium weight. Beginning at the mid-palate and spreading outward, soft minerality and tangy acidity dries the the entire palate.
Taste – Plenty of ripe dark jammy red and black fruit lead the way, while softer notes of baking spice, subtle anise – while slight hints of soft black pepper, chocolate mocha and soft toasted vanilla and oak follow.
Finish – Long and packed with flavor, this wine shows pronounced fruit that, at the mid-palate, lingers longer than other flavors. At the end hints of the other complex flavors fade as the plush tannins, acidity and soft minerality dries the palate in anticipation of another sip.
Conclusion – If you are a fan of big juicy fruit forward cabs, then the *2009 Elevage Wine Co. Raised By Wolves Cabernet Sauvignon * is a wonderful choice. Great aromatic ripe jammy fruit leads you in, leading you to a soft, round and crushed velvet feel that surrounds the ripe fruit. Clean on the finish and very easy to drink, this is a great wine to serve at an early evening barbecue. Enjoy now or for the next three years.
WINEMAKER INTEL BRIEFING DOSSIER
WINE EDUCATION: Self Taught, Roy Davis (My Dad) and Kevin Rogers (Timberrock Winery)
WASHINGTON WINE JOB BRIEF:
1996-2003 StoneRidge Vineyards, Viticulturist, Royal City WA
2003-2007 Frenchman Hills Vineyards, Viticulturist, Royal City WA
2008- Present Founder/Winemaker for Elevage Wine Company. Ellensburg, WA
WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: Keep it simple, keep it clean and the wine will make itself.
WINEMAKER QUOTE: “Will we ever know Agent Red’s real name?”
FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: Peace, Love and Merlot, 7 Hills Merlot, Walla Walla Valley May 2010.
AGENT RED: Greetings, Bill. We are thrilled to be showing your 2009 Raised by Wolves Cabernet Sauvignon today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.
BILL DAVIS: Thank you we are excited to commercially release our 2009 Cabernet with your operatives.
RED: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
BILL: It really was my Dad and I didn’t get it when he was alive. His passion for viticulture and oenology totally consumed his life and it was his true passion. After his passing, I knew there was nothing else that I wanted to do but continue his legacy and the passion quickly followed. It’s sad but extremely rewarding that I can continue his legacy and create a brand, something he didn’t have the chance to do.
RED: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?
BILL: Kevin Rogers of Timberrock Winery in Post Falls Idaho. Kevin is veterinarian by trade but a phenomenal winemaker in his own right. He uses his scientific background to his advantage in the science of fermentation. Unfortunately his has decided to cut back production and just focus on his wine club.
RED: Who do you make wine for?
BILL: :* I make wine for me and for what I think will represent our winery and Washington State. I have found there is fine line you must walk with each vintage and vineyard.
RED: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.
BILL: 2009 was interesting year in Walla Walla. Things started off 2-3 weeks behind and with a hotter than normal summer we picked up a good week and harvested earlier than normal. Because we harvested earlier in the season, fruit from Walla Walla in 2009, in my opinion, probably fared the best. The cold air from the Blue Mountains settle into the valley at night really help the acids balance late in the summer. The 2009 Raised by Wolves Cabernet, I like to call “Youthfully Disciplined.” Even though it is a young Cabernet it has the structure and balance to take on the big dogs. Huge notes of Cherry, wet stones and cigar are easily discernible with a nice balance of acid and touch of oak on the end. Everything I could expect from Walla Walla AVA.
RED: What is your favorite pairing with today’s wine?
BILL: Steak au poivre with a reduced cognac sauce and asparagus if I’m out on the town or if I’m in the winery just plain Lay’s potato chips.
RED: In your opinion, what makes the Walla Walla so special?
BILL: From River beds to soil that is over 100 ft. deep and everything in between is what makes the terrior in Walla Walla Special. We benefit from long days cool nights from the mountain effect makes Walla Walla a unique region in Washington State.
RED: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
BILL: We just finished up bottling the 2009 Walla Walla Valley “Rebels of Vine” a meritage blend. Bottling a couple of pallets of Chardonnay and a little more Voodoo. Other than hitting the street selling we are pretty much finished until harvest.
RED: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?
BILL: Without a glass and just pass the bottle around. Have fun and try everything once great wines are coming from the West coast even Arizona! Don’t be pretentious when it comes to wine because you might miss a sleeper.
RED: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
BILL: 2011 could be an interesting one. Stay tuned..
RED: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The tasting room location of Elevage Wine Co. can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
About This Wine:
Youthfully disciplined, this young Cabernet will stand up with the big boys. Huge aromatics on nose expressing roasted black cherries and wet cobblestones offering a robust structure and a full finish with dark plum, white pepper and cigar. Definitely, showcasing a beautiful blend of fruit and earth a true characteristics of Walla Walla Vineyards.
About The Winery:
Blood is thicker than water and wine is somewhere in between. Elevage Wine Co. is a family owned winery collaborating with friends, combining the passion of wine making and art. We are local and loyal. Somewhere in between classical Bach and Hendrix rock, we are founded on the premise “WE MUST CREATE.”
Even though they opened the doors in 2010, Elevage Wine Company was over 2 years in the making. Their hard work paid off when straight out of the gates, they received a “Double Gold” in San Francisco on their 1st vintage of Cabernet Sauvignon from their family’s vineyard, Stone Ridge Vineyards in the Columbia Valley. Setting the bar high was their intention and they believe they have done it again with their Cabernet 2009 vintage, sourced 100% from the Walla Walla Valley. With a focus of sourcing their fruit from only ancient river beds they truly believe “it brings a harmonious balance of fruit and the terrior”.
The People: A true perfect storm, Elevage Wine Company is a family from 3 different disciplines collaborating together to prove that Washington State produces a “World Class” Cabernet. Driven by a passion for wine & food, and a love for art, they are a husband and wife team; Bill & Camis Davis and Camis’ brother Todd Eilert. By combining their life experiences and different backgrounds, they work together by creating wines that are balanced and very drinkable.
Bill Davis, the director of wine making, attended Washington State University. Growing up on a farm, Bill learned the importance of sustainable agriculture. His family has farmed in Washington State since the 1890’s, where they continue to grow row crops, orchards, and vineyards. Bill’s passion for viticulture was started by his father, who sadly never saw his dream become a reality before he was taken too soon. Bill continues to keep his legacy alive in all that he does. Camis Davis (Eilert), is classically trained in Culinary Arts and her knowledge and love for food, allows her the ability to easily pair wines with the menu at their wine bar, Brix by Elevage Wine Company in Ellensburg, Washington. She is a graduate of Central Washington University in both Psychology and Teaching. While not at their wine bar or being a “mommy”, she teaches Culinary Arts at the high school level.
Together, they have two small children, Hudson, 4, and Beckham, 1. Todd Eilert, a business graduate of Pepperdine University, has spent the last 10 years designing in the action sports industry, working as a Fashion Designer for clothing brands such as Lost, DC Shoes, Volcom and currently, Quick Silver. In his spare time, he enjoys painting and creating art, surfing, biking, and traveling.
Elevage Wine Company, in keeping with old school traditions, create wines for the young at heart. They like to think of their wines as “posh, but not pretentious”. Based on their motto, “we must create” their wines will definitely paint a vision.
Appellation: Walla Walla Valley
Vineyards: Lowden Hills, Walla Walla 40%; 7 Hills Vineyards, Walla Walla 60%
Barrel Ageing: 20 Months American Oak (40% new)
Cases Produced: 560 Cases