Purity or variety? Mutt or purebred? Is a wine better when all its grapes come from one vineyard, or from a carefully selected array of complementary vineyards?
There are merits to both sides of the argument. You can examine them all in this Seven Hills Washington Cabernet Sauvignon two-pack. Analyze them. Scrutinize them. Weigh them in your mind and on your tongue. Rarely has free and open inquiry been so enjoyable.
In diversity’s corner, we find the Seven Hills 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley. Grapes from Wahluke Slope, Red Mountain, Yakima Valley, and Walla Walla Valley come together for a pan-Columbian summit meeting of Cabernet all-stars. Put ‘em all together and you get a soft, sweet arrangement of blackberry, vanilla, clove, and marzipan, with a persistently fruity finish. You might expect this kind of complexity from this geographic goulash of grapes, but this wine’s balance and accessibility are a testament to Seven Hills’ winemaking.
Then there’s the purebred Seven Hills 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon, Klipsun Vineyard. Not only is Klipsun one of the most esteemed vineyards in the Northwest, but Seven Hills has been sourcing grapes from the same specially designated rows since 1991. This particular vintage is a full-bodied, ripe Cab that positively reeks of dust, ripe red cherry, dried plum, and vanilla. On the palate, lush red fruit is drizzled with dried cranberry and garnished celery seed, spice, and toasted herb. It’s a distinctive red that could – and did – only come from one place.
Once all the evidence has been presented and the cases have been closed, we’re confident you’ll come to the same decision we did. To the question we asked earlier – Is a wine better when all its grapes come from one vineyard, or from a carefully selected array of complementary vineyards? – the answer must be:
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