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Soos Creek Ciel du Cheval Bordeaux Blend 2010
$34.95 regular/ $31.46
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Ellanelle Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
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Owen Roe Red Willow Vineyard 2010
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Sparkman Darkness Syrah Boushey Vineyard 2011


Winery:
Sparkman Cellars


$56.95 Regular

$51.26
in any 12 bottle order or Build a Case

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Review:

Wine Spectator 93 Points

Rich, round and generous, not at all heavy, this is effusive, offering blueberry, currant and exotic spice flavors that play against refined tannins and a lovely open texture. Shows intensity without great density. Drink now through 2020. - Wine Spectator

Think dark.....like black silk. Blackberry cobbler and dark chocolate. Followed by flavors of raspberry, herbs and rhubarb. The finish is elegant with notes of roasted game, mushrooms and strawberry jam. Powerful dark fruit richness.

2008 Vintage Tasting Notes

2008 Wine Spectator - 93 points - Dark, juicy, dusky and seductive, playing earthy notes of wet soil and smoke against rich boysenberry and currant fruit, lingering against modest tannins on the balanced finish. This has plenty of room to grow. Drink now through 2018. 125 cases made. - H.S.

This enormous Syrah is from Dick Boushey’s Birdhouse Vineyard in the Yakima Valley which some say is the best syrah vineyard in the state, if not the country. It’s silky, dense, ripe and firm with mountains of ripe blackberry, blueberry pie, licorice, smoked meat, black truffle, pencil lead and toasted nut. Its silky tannins frame a monstrous, yet well-balanced structure, ensuring that this wine will improve for many years to come. - the winery

Down the "row" of Woodinville, Washington wineries-in-warehouses, near our old friends at Mark Ryan, is Chris Sparkman's (or Sparky, as he is called) Sparkman Cellars. Chris is one of those super talented winemakers whose delightful love of life comes through in the names and styles of his big red wines.

A Seattle transplant, Chris was born and raised on the east coast, and still sports a southern accent from his Nashville roots. First in Washington DC and New Orleans, then in Seattle, he was a sommelier and wine buyer at great restaurants, ending up at Seattle's Waterfront Grill as general manager for six years.

Chris's experience with Washington wines, getting to know vintners who visited the Grill and tasting all those lovely bottles, gave him the winemaking bug. Combined with a much-needed mid-life change of priorities, he gradually shifted over to a career as a fulltime winemaker - via our friend Mark McNeilly, the generous owner of Mark Ryan. Mark McNeilly has helped several talented winemakers in Woodinville's warehouse row to get started - and Chris has been one of the most successful.

For his first vintages, Chris made wine with Mark at the Mark Ryan warehouse space, moving into his own space for his 2007 wines. In the tradition of his friends up and down the row, Chris has successfully hunted down and grabbed some first-class grapes from Yakima and Walla Walla Valley vineyards. His wines are big and bold, and he's coming into his own style, big yet refined, you might even call it European, with his zest for life showing through.

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