Horse Heaven Hills
The 2010 vintage was cool and wet, in fact the coolest temperatures we have seen since our 1st vintage in 1999. Although we had a warm early spring, May & June were very wet. The summer months were mild with few 100° days resulting in slow even ripening. September was unusually wet but October was gloriously warm and sunny. The wines produced in ’10 have great acidity and a very "Bordeaux-like" style. To ensure complete fruit maturation we lower yields through shoot thinning, leaf stripping and meticulous viticulture practices. Although reduced, fermentation progressed normally. The wines have intense flavors, beautiful color & excellent balance.
The 2010 Horse Heaven Hills Claret (red wine) is a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 10% Malbec, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. The fruit was sourced from our estate vines at Gunselman Bench, Andrews Horse Heaven Ranch, McKinley Springs and Phinny Hill vineyards. It was aged in 80% French oak and
20% American oak for 23 months, 40% of the oak was new. The ideal consumption is 2 to 5 years from release date, but this wine will develop for another 5-7 years. The alcohol by volume is 13.9%. This wine was bottled September 2012.
Wine Press NW This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (50 percent), Merlot (15 percent), Cabernet Franc (15 percent), Petit Verdot (10 percent) and Malbec opens with aromatics of blueberry, boysenberry, cinnamon, nutmeg, espresso and bubble gum. On the attack, flavors lead with plums and fig, followed by pie cherry acidity, a strand of chocolaty tannin and black licorice. Hints of dried herbs in the finish bode well for flank steak or duck confit with a cherry glaze. It's a bargain at this price, and the screwcap makes it easy to get into.
Dan Radil Bellingham Herald Robert Karl’s flagship wine has always been claret. A true Bordeaux blend, this year’s 2010 Claret (about $20) is a perfectly balanced, underpriced masterpiece with black currant and plum flavors and a silky finish.
87 Jeb Dunnuck Wine Advocate Chunky, dry tannin, the 2010 Claret (65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 10% Malbec and the balance Cab Franc and Petit Verdot) offers up notions of cassis, red licorice, raspberry, saddle leather and hints of
flowers on the nose. Quaffable and with some Bordeaux-like typicity, it’s a medium-bodied effort geared for near term drinking. Drink now-2017.
These classic, well-made wines are produced by self-taught winemaker (physician during the day) Joe Gunselman. They have pure, clean profiles and in most cases, represent good values. - Jeb Dunnuck (June, 2013)
Gold, 2013 Seattle Wine Awards