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Secret Squirrel Cabernet Sauvignon
Fellow wine lovers, things are about to get squirrely but in a good way! Theres a brand new wine by a very prominent Washington winery. Are you familiar with Corliss Estates in Walla Walla? Theyre a very high end, cult status winery, whose flagship Cabernet Sauvignon sells for $76 per bottle, if youre lucky enough to get on their mailing list. If not, then you might pay over a $100 a bottle for it, off the aftermarket shelf. Theyre just now launching a brand new winery with more value driven sensibilities, yet still made using all Corliss Estates vineyard fruit, and the same care that goes into making their top ends wines.

Thats right, its called Secret Squirrel, as in something that is under the radar and sneaks by undetected. An appropriate name since this wine doesnt have a website, and is not even mentioned anywhere on the Corliss website; it is completely undercover. Once you see it though, you wont be able to take your eyes off of it. The label is stunning, with very vivid graphic, great color, and just a slight glossy finish to it tremendously well done! I know there can be some aversion when it comes to critter wines, but this is no Yellow Tail. In fact, the imaginative label on the outside somewhat deflects from how seriously the wine on the inside is. Its a rather complex Cabernet Sauvignon, especially for this price range. I was first given this wine in a blind tasting, and I thought that it was a medium priced Bordeaux, from a more modern producer.

The Secret Squirrel Cabernet has a deep base of granitic earth quality, with well integrated notes of black cherry preserve and ripe cassis, coinciding with hints of dried thyme, cigar box, and dark chocolate. Its medium-full in body, with firm tannins and good aging potential relative to its price point, and an elegant clean finish that doesnt leave a heavy impression on the palate. The tightly knit complexity of flavor comes from their use of great fruit from Corliss own estate vineyards, and long oak aging of 28 months in 70% new French oak barrel just the right amount of time and new oak, from what Im tasting. You may remember that Ive advocate for this quickly popularizing philosophy of aging wines in less new oak, but for periods longer than 12 or 18 month, and I think the results speak for themselves in this Secret Squirrel Cabernet Sauvignon. Another great example of how the wines of the 2012 vintage can be so well put together, in the hands of a skilled winemaker.

Bottle Size: .750


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