Have you ever had one of those days that just seemed to totally get away from you? Like today, I've been busy all day long running errands, going to the gym, doing chores around the house, and suddenly it's after 8 o'clock and I haven't even started cooking dinner much less opened a bottle of wine! Well this has to stop now! So I'm opening a bottle of 2010 L'Ecole No. 41 Apogee, a great blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (50%), Merlot (33%), Malbec (7%) and Cabernet Franc (4%) all from the Pepper Bridge Vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley. Of the two top blends from L'Ecole, Perigee and Apogee, this one is my second favorite, but we won't hold that against it!
The wine is a lovely deep ruby color in the glass. The nose has some lovely aromas of blackberry, cherry and plum with some rustic notes of leather, cedar, dark chocolate and spice. The taste is quite smooth, with some subdued fruit up front and nice earthy notes of dusty limestone and iron midpalate. The tannins are very well integrated, giving this wine some fantastic structure and a smooth, long and supple finish.
Overall I would rate this wine a solid 9, as it's a classic Bordeaux style blend for which Walla Walla is now well known. Tonight, once I get off my lazy butt and start cooking, I plan to enjoy this wine with some cedar planked wild Alaskan sockeye served on a bed of baby greens with some aged white balsamic, some grilled golden beets and some linguine tossed with garlic and olive oil. The earth and spice of this wine will be such a great foil to the richness of the salmon, I can't wait to eat! Salut!