Current Releases from Andrew Will Winery



By Kori ~ November 6th, 2013.

Chris Camarda made his first wines in the basement of his mother’s house on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, Washington. After spending 20 years in the restaurant industry, Chris had developed a good palate and decided to try his hand at winemaking. He founded Andrew Will Winery in 1989 and named it for his son Will and nephew Andrew. At first, the winery was located in an industrial space in Seattle. Chris knew the basics of winemaking, he knew a few winemakers whom he called upon for guidance, and he visited California to learn even more about the industry. In 1994, Chris moved to Vashon Island, a short ferry ride from Seattle, where he built his home and the Andrew Will Winery facilities.

Today, Andrew Will sources fruit primarily from four vineyards: Two Blondes Vineyard, their estate vineyard in the Yakima Valley; Champoux Vineyard in the Horse Heaven Hills, in which they are a part owner; Discovery Vineyard also in the Horse Heaven Hills; and Ciel du Cheval Vineyard on Red Mountain. Andrew Will produces “white label” single-vineyard blends as well as “black label” wines, which are typically varietally-labeled and offered at a lower price point. Andrew Will Winery currently produces about 5,000 cases per year.

Recently, we had the opportunity to try Andrew Will’s current releases in a blind samples tasting. All seven wines were good, but we were especially impressed with the 2010 Sorella and the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon. My personal favorite is the Sorella, a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend from Champoux Vineyard. Sorella means “sister” in Italian, and this wine honors the memory of Chris’s sister who passed away in the mid-1990’s. The “black label” Cabernet Sauvignon is also an outstanding wine and delivers serious bang for your buck.

Andrew Will wines are sold though their mailing list and select restaurants and retail shops.

2011 Andrew Will Cabernet Sauvignon (Columbia Valley, Washington): 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Dark purple in color. Very aromatic with black fruit and licorice on the nose. More black fruit and licorice as well as earth come through on the palate. Full-bodied with lively acidity and high tannins. Well-balanced with a long, lingering finish.
Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $30; Available elsewhere, $25 to $32

2010 Andrew Will Sorella Red Wine (Champoux Vineyard, Horse Heaven Hills, Washington): 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, and 7% Cabernet Franc. Deep, dark purple. Gorgeous nose with black fruit, spice, and coffee aromas. Black cherry, coffee, spice, and a hint of leather come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with crisp acidity, and medium to high, velvety tannins. Well-balanced with a very long, smooth finish.
Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $75; Available elsewhere, $63 to $80

2010 Andrew Will Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Red Wine (Ciel du Cheval Vineyard, Red Mountain, Washington): 52% Merlot and 48% Cabernet Franc. Deep, dark purplish red. Nice nose with red fruit and floral aromas. Red and black fruit, earth, and herbs come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity, and high tannins. Well-balanced with a long finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 2 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $55; Available elsewhere, $47 to $48

2010 Andrew Will Champoux Vineyard Red Wine (Champoux Vineyard, Horse Heaven Hills, Washington): 42% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Franc, and 26% Cabernet Sauvignon. Deep, dark red. Very aromatic with beautiful black fruit on the nose. Black cherry, blackcurrant, and earth come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity and medium to high tannins. Well-balanced with a very long finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 1 bang for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $62; Available elsewhere, $56 to $70

2011 Andrew Will Cabernet Franc (Columbia Valley, Washington): 100% Cabernet Franc. Deep red in color. Nice nose with cedar and black fruit on both the nose and palate. Medium to full-bodied with crisp acidity, medium tannins, and a long, smooth finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $30; Available elsewhere, $25 to $29

2010 Andrew Will Discovery Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (Discovery Vineyard, Horse Heaven Hills, Washington): 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Dark purple. Aromatic with red fruit and oak on both the nose and palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity, medium tannins, and a medium finish.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 2 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $50; Available elsewhere, $56 to $61

2010 Andrew Will Two Blondes Vineyard Red Wine (Two Blondes Vineyard, Yakima Valley, Washington): 43% Merlot, 38% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Malbec. Deep, dark purplish red. Nice nose with black cherry and oak aromas and flavors. Medium-bodied and smooth with medium tannins and a medium finish.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 1 bang for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Received as sample, suggested retail $55; Available elsewhere, $47 to $63


Filed under: American Wine, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Red Wine, Washington State Wine, Wines Over $25

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