Chief Factor’s Favorite Red “Metis”
A blend of 33% Cabernet Franc and 33% Syrah both from Eastern Washington’s desert, and 34% Pinot Noir from Clark County. This is a great everyday red wine for those who want a glass a day of a hearty red blend. The “Chief” combines the rich, ripe blackberry flavors of an Eastern Washington desert red with the herbaceous, peppery character of the Cab Franc, and the spritely red fruit acidity of our Western Washington Pinot Noir.
The first European wine grapes (Vitis Vinifera) in the Pacific Northwest were planted at Fort Vancouver between 1827-1829. Most of the employees of the Hudson’s Bay Company at Fort Vancouver were “Metis”…people of French-Canadian and American Indian blood. We call our blended wines “Metis” in honor of the hardy people who tended the gardens and fields of Fort Vancouver.
Quarter Acre Gravel Mine Cabernet
Planted in 1980 on 65 foot deep, Lauren Gravelly Loam soil, virtually identical to Bordeaux where Cabernet is King. We ferment on the skins in big, sealed plastic bags for up to 6 weeks. This vintage was in neutral (old) Hungarian oak barrels for over a year. Fruity and intense flavor with the herbaceous character you expect of a cool-climate Cabernet. Great with hearty foods, or just drink it all by itself. A joy to drink.
Very different from an Eastern Washington or California Cabernet where the grapes are often extremely ripe and overly sweet…they all taste like overripe blackberries and oak to me. This Western Washington Cabernet is much more akin to the classic Cabernet from Bordeaux.