Boudreaux Cellars: Master of Blending Produces More Excellent Wines



By Kori ~ February 14th, 2011.

Boudreaux Cellars, located just outside Leavenworth, Washington, was founded by owner/winemaker Rob Newsom in 2001. A Louisiana native, Newsom has lived on the property that is home to both his log home and Boudreaux Cellars since 1981. He began making wine in his garage in 1998 and started building the winery facilities in 2001. Boudreaux currently produces about 2,000 cases per year. We have had the pleasure to get to know Rob and visit with him on a number of occasions. He is truly one of the great personalities in the Washington wine industry. In response to my recent Improve Your Tasting Skills post in which I suggested that readers taste at least one new wine a month, Rob sent me the following message:

Boudreaux says, ‘Taste at least one new wine per day.’

Recently, we had the opportunity to taste six of Boudreaux Cellars’ current releases in a blind samples tasting. Boudreaux Cellars is best known for its Cabernet Sauvignons that are excellent. The 2006 Merlot and 2008 Chardonnay also showed very well.

Since his site is not ideally suited for grape growing, Newsom sources his grapes from many different vineyards around the state. He is a master at blending. Most of his bottles are labeled simply Washington State and lists the vineyard sources for that particular wine.

In addition to making great wines, Boudreaux boasts a spectacular setting along the Icicle River in the Cascade Mountains. Since it is located four miles off the power grid, Boudreaux is the only winery in Washington State that is completely self-powered. Only open by appointment, Boudreaux is well worth a visit.

2006 Boudreaux Cellars Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (Washington State): 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Fruit sourced from Champoux and Loess Vineyards. Deep, dark purplish red. Beautiful bouquet with blackberry, black cherry, black pepper, spice, and a hint of floral aromas on the nose. Blackberry, black cherry, licorice, leather, and spice come through on the palate. Full-bodied with crisp acidity and high, drying tannins. Well-balanced with good complexity and a very long, smooth finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $100; Available elsewhere, $100

2006 Boudreaux Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon (Washington State): Deep, dark red. Very aromatic with jammy black fruits on the nose. Fruit-forward with blackberry cobbler, black cherry, and leather on the palate. Full-bodied with lively acidity and medium to high tannins. Well-balanced with a long finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $50; Available elsewhere, $49

2006 Boudreaux Cellars Merlot (Washington State): 100% Merlot. Fruit sourced from Dionysis, Pepper Bridge, Seven Hills, and Wallula Vineyards. Deep, dark red with slight browning. Very aromatic with black fruits, plum, molasses, and allspice on the nose. More molasses, cinnamon, earth, and black fruits come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with crisp acidity and medium, drying tannins. Well-balanced and smooth with a long finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $40; Available elsewhere, $31

2008 Boudreaux Cellars Chardonnay (Washington State): Unfiltered. Medium, golden yellow in color. Aromatic with butterscotch and vanilla on the nose. Lemon, apple, and butterscotch flavors on the palate. Dry, medium-bodied and very crisp with a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 2 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $35

2009 Boudreaux Cellars Riesling (Gamache Vineyard, Washington State): Pale, straw yellow. Aromatic with fresh aromas of white peach and honey. More white peach and Asian pear come through on the palate. Slightly off-dry and light to medium-bodied with crisp acidity and a medium finish with a hint of effervescence on the back end.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 2 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $20

2007 Boudreaux Cellars JBO’s Frangio (Desert Hills Vineyard, Washington State): Deep, purplish red in color. Aromatic with red fruit and medicinal aromas. Bright red fruits come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity, medium to high, drying tannins, and a long finish. Takes a while to open up.
Quality: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: NR (not recommended)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $50


Filed under: American Wine, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Merlot, Red Wine, Riesling, Washington State Wine, White Wine, Wines NOT To Buy (1 & 2 Star), Wines Over $25, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. Jill | February 14th, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Visiting Boudreaux Cellars was THE highlight of a trip to Leavenworth back in 2008. Rob is a real character and very knowledgeable about wines. My sister-in-law refused to let me drive over the wooden bridge to get to his place, so we ended up parking down the road and walking up to his winery, which is in amazingly beautiful scenery. Icicle Creek is more like a full blown river. I am still sitting on the bottles of 2005 Cabernet and 2005 Merlot that I purchased, saving them for a really special occasion. Rob was a complete delight to visit with and he gave us a great little tour of his facility. If you get the chance, go visit, and taste his excellent wines.

  2. Kori | February 15th, 2011 at 11:12 am

    Jill,
    Thanks so much for sharing your experience at Boudreaux Cellars. Hope others take your advice and visit as well. Cheers!

  3. RJ Bodah | February 20th, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    On May 12 2010 you gave the reserve cad 4.5 out of 5 and a 5 out of 5 bang for your buck. I’m a little confused on this rerating of wines. Is this something new that you are trying? Should we average the scores together?

  4. Kori | February 20th, 2011 at 5:29 pm

    RJ,
    No, you should not average the scores. Just understand that while it is the same wine, it was a different bottle tasted 9 months after the first bottle was tasted. Wines can and do change with more time in the bottle. The reason we tasted and rated this wine again is because we received it as a sample again. Since we taste blind in these samples tastings and the wines are sacked up and prepared by a person not participating in the tasting, I did not know that we were tasting a wine that we had previously rated. On that day, I rated that bottle of the Reserve Cab as 4 stars out of 5. While I did not plan it this way in this particular instance, it is not uncommon for wine reviewers to try and rate wines over time. And those ratings are not always the same as previous ratings. Cheers!

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