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Andrew Will Champoux Vineyard Horse Heaven Hills 2011
95 points Wine Advocate: "The most complete of the bottled releases, the 2011 Champoux Vineyard is comprised of 54% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc and 18% Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 21 months in barrel, 35% being new. Giving up gorgeous cassis, earth, lead pencil shavings and hints of toast, this full-bodied, perfectly balanced 2011 has fantastic concentration, ample texture and a classically focused, structured finish. It will have 15 year or more of total longevity, which is saying something in this vintage."
The 2011 Champoux is strutting right now. The extra time in bottle will reward all those who pull the cork and let it rest in the cellar for another 4-5 years.
Champoux 2010 rocks. Of the last 10 vintages, 2010 ranks right there with 05 and 08 as favorites. Champoux Vineyard always delivers, with black cherry, blueberry and cassis melding perfectly.
2009 tasting notes: The nose on Andrew Will Champoux Red Wine 09 does exactly what you'd want it to - makes you want to drink it! That sounds so obvious, but this is pure pleasure: billowing black cherry, truffle, cassis, and a buttery pastry note that makes your eyes close in wistfulness. The ripe and silky texture helps make this delicious right now - sweet tannins and savory herbs compliment each other on the finish. A marquee Washington red blend. - Marcus
2009 Tanzer - 93 points - Good deep red with ruby highlights. Very ripe black plum dominates the nose. An impressively concentrated Bordeaux blend with thick yet lively flavors of black cherry and redcurrant filling the mouth. This has the ripeness and stuffing to support its substantial dusty, ripe tannins. Plenty of structure here. - J.R.
2009 Wine Spectator - 92 points - Supple, elegant and gentle, unfurling its black currant, tar and floral flavors with grace, underlining them with refined tannins that allow the flavors to linger with delicacy. Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2019. - H.S.
This wine has a full middle palate with layers of raspberry, black cherry, and plum with blueberry reflections. The wine is soft considering the percentage of cabernet and has good acidity that contributes to its freshness and structure. - Chris Camarda
43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Cabernet Franc, 11% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot
2008 Vintage Tasting Notes
2008 Wine Advocate - 95 points - The 2008 Champoux Vineyard is made up of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot. It sports an inviting bouquet of sandalwood, rose petal, Asian spices, a hint of leather, black currant, and blackberry. This is followed by a succulent, plush, pleasure-bent wine that deftly conceals enough structure to evolve for 5-7 years. It offers a drinking window extending from 2016 to 2028+. - Jay Miller
2008 Wine Spectator - 93 points - Powerful, focused and compelling for its layers of black cherry, mineral, animal and spice flavors, swirling together on the beautifully constructed finish. This has presence, depth and distinction, with miles to go. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. H.S.
Best since 2005 - those are the first 3 words I wrote. The aromas are a little shy but come to life quickly and then pow! Black cherry, blue berry, a dash of super deep black fruit with something that I can only describe as savory-earthy-mouthwatering-damn-I-love-this. This has amazing depth, with levity in the form of subtle crushed herbs mingling with tannins on the finish.
One of Avalon's most anticipated releases each year. From some of the oldest vines in Washington comes this powerhouse red. Beautiful black cherry, intense blueberry, and dark cocoa aromas, with pretty violet accents. Taking a sip is like biting into a warm black cherry/black plum gallette, with flavors cascading and expanding. The fine tannins are present but nicely integrated and the balance is perfect. A minute later minerals, earth, and sweetness linger.
The 2008 Champoux is made from 30 year old vines from Champoux - Washington's top vineyard. 46% Cabernet, 26% Merlot, 23% Cab Franc, 5% Petit Verdot.
Parker comments, in Parker's Wine Buyers Guide 5th Edition, that "Andrew Will's wines have virtually perfect tannins. They are present but buffered by the loads of dominating sweet fruit. Furthermore, what is amazing about Chris Camarda's wines is that they are concentrated yet grateful. Camarda's (wines) blend power with elegance, concentration with finesse, and supersweet fruit with definition. Chris Camarda is a brilliant winemaker."
2007 Vintage Tasting Notes
A truly epic wine.
While the blend changed in 07, the luscious nature of the wine did not. Heady aromas immediately ooze from the glass - crushed red and black fruits intertwine with baking spices and you're hooked. A supple wash of red berries, black cherry, sweet blueberry and ribbon of black currant persuades your palate. With decanting, the bottom notes and finish of the 07 Champoux flourishes and fattens, providing dark chocolate-covered cherry accents that are sensational. The 2007 Champoux is ultra-polished while maintaining the structure that Andrew Will wines are famous for. - Marcus
2007 Wine Advocate - 95 points - The 2007 Champoux Vineyard is a bit more deeply colored. A blend of 52% Cabernet Franc, 21% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 8% Petit Verdot, it is also denser, richer, more plush, and longer in the finish. Give it 4-6 years of additional cellaring and drink it from 2014 to 2027."
Wine & Spirits Magazine 96 Points!
Wine Enthusiast 95 points.
2007 Tanzer - 91 points - Bright ruby-red. Medicinal blackberry and violet aromas are accompanied by a slightly decadent quality. Deep, broad and rich, conveying an extremely ripe dried-fruit impression. This is most impressive today on the back half, where it spreads out impressively to coat the palate, and where the big, broad tannins serve to accentuate rather than cut off the wine's fruit.
2006 Vintage Tasting Notes
Andrew Will wines are a study in integrated oak. The 2006 Champoux shows excellent fruit structure and balance and will evolve over the next decade or more. Having recently tasted a vertical of Will Champoux from 2002 through 2005, I can attest to the rewards of buying Champoux for your cellar.
The 2006 Andrew Will Champoux Vineyard Red is absolutely classic Champoux. Seductive, pure aromas of ripe blackberries resonate with nuances of cocoa and smoke. At once dense and supple, the first burst of fruit expands and the layers of black cherry, blackberry, blueberry, and cassis unfold. The unstoppable Champoux fruit keeps shining through the finish, while a ribbon of savory blueberry syrup dances with nutmeg, sage leaf, and earth.
2006 Wine Advocate - 93 points - The 2006 Champoux Vineyard, a source of some of Washington’s finest old-vine Cabernet Sauvignon (as well as the principal component of Quilceda Creek’s renowned Cabernet) is purple-colored with an impressive display of smoky black fruits, pencil lead, and earth notes. On the palate, it is intense, rich, and layered with the structure and balance for a decade of evolution. This powerful effort should drink well from 2015 to 2030".
2005 Vintage Tasting Notes
2005 Wine Advocate - 94 points - The 2005 Champoux Vineyard is made up of 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot. Purple-colored, it delivers an alluring perfume of pain grille, spice box, and violets. On the palate, it is layered, intense, and powerful. Its impeccable balance should allow it to evolve for up to a decade and drink well through 2030."
2005 Wine Spectator - 94 points - Seamless and harmonious, with beautifully articulated, ripe black cherry, cassis, and violet-tinged floral notes that mingle with hints of cedar and dark chocolate as the finish plays out against polished tannins. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. Best from 2009 through 2015." H.S.
2004 Vintage Tasting Notes
2004 Wine Advocate - 93 points
The 2004 Champoux Vineyard is 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Cabernet Franc, 22% Merlot, and 9% Petit Verdot. It spent 21 months in 35% new French oak. Less marked by oak and more complex than the Sorella bottling, it has a splendid bouquet of cedar, tobacco, vanilla, leather, cassis, and black currants. This is followed by a concentrated, dense wine with gobs of flavor, a velvety texture, excellent integration of oak, tannin, and acidity, and a seamless, 60+ second finish. It will evolve in the cellar for 5-7 years but is difficult to resist now. Chris Camarda's Andrew Will Cellars began in 1989 and currently produces 4300 cases of predominantly Bordeaux-style blends. They reflect Carmada's interpretation of each vineyard's terroir.
2003 Vintage Tasting Notes
2003 Wine Advocate - 93+ points - Camarda’s 2003 Champoux Vineyard, from vines that average 23 years old (ancient by this state’s standards), is a blend of 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Cabernet Franc, 15% Merlot, and 5% Petit Verdot. Violets, blackberries, dark cherries, and red fruits are found in this medium to full-bodied wine’s aromatics. On the palate, it displays sage-tinged red cherries, blackberries, cassis, and hints of brambleberries as well as loads of ripe, structure-giving tannin. This harmonious, concentrated offering should be drunk between 2008 and 2022. - Jay Miller