WHAT CLIENTS ARE SAYING ABOUT FIRETHORN VINEYARDS
Josh McDaniels, Winemaker & General Manager
"Working with Firethorn Vineyard fruit has been a real pleasure and has consistently produced fantastic wines for us at Doubleback. The vineyard is meticulously managed and produces world-class fruit with a true sense of place. We are foregoing our fruit due to our decision to focus exclusively on the Walla Walla Valley AVA and our Estate vineyards there. Jay Bales and Billo Navarane are fantastic to work with; each year they diligently worked to provide us with top-tier fruit according to our high quality standards. I unreservedly give Firethorn Vineyard and the team my highest recommendation."
Ed Lefferts of William Marie Wines
"I've had the pleasure of working with Mr. Billo Naravane over the past two vintages, and it's been an honor to have access to such meticulously farmed fruit. Jay, owner of Firethorn Vineyard, went above and beyond to ensure satisfaction both in the vineyard, and from a customer service standpoint. The 2015 fruit was phenomenal in all aspects, bursting with fruit flavor, great acidity and phenolics, lending to a wine we are excited to share as a single vineyard, single varietal Cabernet Sauvignon following barrel aging. We can't wait to see what Firethorn Vineyard has to offer in years to come."
Tina Hammond of Privé Vineyard
"We have enjoyed working with Firethorn Vineyards Cabernet Franc since 2010. A great wine can only be crafted from exceptional grapes and we are honored to gather our grapes from Firethorn. Our customers rave about the 100% Cab Franc that we craft from this premium, vineyard designate wine. Jay and Billo make a terrific team!"
Robb Bell of Cathedral Ridge Winery
"Firethorn Vineyard grows world class Bordeaux varietals in a beautiful setting. Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Malbec all thrive there. The quality of grapes coming out of the Firethorn Vineyard make our job in the winery easier and in turn, make beautiful, expressive wines."
INTERNATIONAL WINE REPORT ON ECHO RIDGE CELLARS WINE
2012 Echo Ridge Cabernet Franc - 93 Points
This absolutely awesome Cabernet Franc begins with bright aromatics of red bell pepper, red cherry and rose petals. There are ripe flavors of red cherry, rose petals, red bell pepper, and pomegranate. This has wonderful purity of fruit and a lovely mouthfeel as this Cabernet Franc shows great elegance and poise. The structure is lovely and this will age well for a decade or more. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2013 Echo Ridge Cabernet Franc - 93 Points
One of the most compelling Cabernet Franc wines that I have tasted from this vintage, the 2013 Echo Ridge opens with feminine aromas reminiscent of red cherry, red bell pepper, and red raspberry. The aromatics at play are truly pretty. The Cabernet Franc wine has flavors are dense and polished with red fruits and baking spices shining through. This will have a long life in the cellar and is best enjoyed in the next decade. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2012 Echo Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon - 92 Points
This dense colored Cabernet Sauvignon opens with aromatics of spicebox, red cherry, prune, tea leaf, and vanilla. This leads to flavors of black cherry, black tea, crushed mint and hints of mocha. This is feminine, structured and lovely with a plush mouthfeel and an herbal streak. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2013 Echo Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon - 92 Points
This Cabernet Sauvignon begins with aromatics of cassis, coffee grounds, black tea and loganberry jam. This leads to dense flavors of coffee grounds, black tea, blackberry cobbler and black cherry cough syrup. This is chewy and shows wonderful poise, as the wine is more fruit driven than the also outstanding '12 Echo Ridge Cabernet bottling. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2012 Echo Ridge Merlot - 92 Points
The 2012 Echo Ridge Merlot is another outstanding wine from this estate. This excellent Merlot wine opens with a bouquet of red cherry, dill, green peppercorn and green bell pepper. This has a lovely mouthfeel and yields lovely flavors of red cherry, red bell pepper, mint, and white pepper, leading to a long finish. (Best 2017-2026) - June, 2017 (OB)
2013 Echo Ridge Merlot - 93 Points
The 2013 Echo Ridge Merlot is simply delicious as it begins with bright aromatics of mocha, red bell pepper, black cherry, black tea and baking spices. This leads to ripe flavors of black tea, black cherry, black plums and red currant. This has a wonderful mouthfeel and texture which captures head winemaker Billo Naravane's signature style. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2016 Echo Ridge Muscat Blanc 'Arrete' - 94 Points
Fortified, this absolutely awesome dessert wine made by superstar winemaker Billo Naravane begins with aromas of white rose, gardenia, lychee and pink grapefruit. This leads to flavors of apricot, lychee, pineapple, and banana foster. The exotic nature of this wine is apparent. (Best 2017-2028) - June, 2017 (OB)
2012 Echo Ridge Red Wine 'Three Blondes and A Boy' - 92 Points
This is a blend of 66% Cabernet with the rest Cabernet Franc and Merlot. This awesome red wine begins with aromatics of rose petals, red cherry, red raspberry and dried herbs. This leads to flavors of red cherry, red raspberry and teaberry with sagebrush. The length and complexity is lovely here. (Best 2017-2027) - June, 2017 (OB)
2013 Echo Ridge Red Wine 'Three Blondes and A Boy' - 93 Points
This wine is a blend of 40% Cabernet 34% Cabernet Franc and 26% Merlot. The red wine opens with rich aromatics of black cherry, bleach olive, rose petals and red bell pepper with sagebrush accents. This leads to intense flavors of black tea, coffee grounds, milk chocolate and green bell pepper. This is a lovely mouthfeel and a plush texture finishing with some moderate tannins. I can see this settling a bit better after one year in the bottle. (Best 2018-2028) - June, 2017 (OB)
2012 Echo Ridge Syrah - 91 Points
The 2012 Echo Ridge Syrah begins with aromatics of smoked brisket, black cherry and black olive with rose petals. This leads to flavors of red cherry, red raspberry, black tea and hints of baking spices. This has wonderful balance and persistence as well as purity. (Best 2018-2028) - June, 2017 (OB)
2013 Echo Ridge Syrah - 92 Points
This wonderful Syrah from Echo Ridge begins with bright aromatics of white pepper, black cherry and black tea leading to flavors of black tea, white pepper, coffee grounds and black cherry. The texture and mouthfeel are both outstanding. This has wonderful acidity considering the heat of the vintage. (Best 2017-2026) - June, 2017 (OB)
WINE ADVOCATE ON ECHO RIDGE CELLARS WINE
2012 Echo Ridge Muscat Canelli - 90 Points
The only white produced, the 2012 Muscat Canelli is about as quaffable and delicious as they come with overflowing aromas of orange blossom, flowers, tangerine and ripe peach. Fresh, pure and juicy on the palate, with a slightly off dry feel, it is hard to resist and is a perfect white for serving chilled over the coming summer months. Drink now - 2013.
2010 Echo Ridge Cabernet Franc - 90 Points
Also solid and with excellent typicity, the 2010 Cabernet Franc delivers perfumed, complex aromas of tobacco, incense, smoke and both red and black berry styled fruit. Medium-bodied, juicy and lively on the palate, it's a delicious effort that will evolve gracefully for 5-7 years.
Drink now - 2018.
STEPHEN TANZER ON ECHO RIDGE CELLARS WINES
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon - 92 Points
Bright medium red. Aromatic nose offers raspberry, incense, flowers and graphite. Ripe and nicely delineated, showing an Old World delicacy to the flavors of red berries, fresh herbs and minerals. Dense and chewy but without any impression of weight. The savory finish features refined tannins and sneaky sweet persistence. This would make a good match for version.
2011 Syrah - 91+ Points
Bright dark red. Slightly wild aromas of black cherry, aromatic spices and herbs. Bright and tight in the mouth, showing very good energy and thrust to the sharply delineated flavors of red berries, peppery spices and flowers. Sappy, fresh, and long, with lingering floral and pepper qualities. This rather polite Syrah calls for a bit of patience.
2011 Three Blondes and a Boy - 91+ Points
Bright deep red. Inviting floral lift to the aromas of blackberry, licorice, cocoa powder, spices and violet. Juicy, savory, and concentrated in the mouth, with red berry and rose petal flavors complicated by earth and spice nuances. Finishes with firm tannins that call for a few years of cellaring.
2011 Echo Ridge Cabernet Franc - 91 Points
Moderately saturated medium red. A slightly swampy mocha note blew off to reveal aromas of violet, rose, marzipan, herbs and green olive. Then unexpectedly sweet and creamy on the palate, with perfumed flavors of red fruits, flowers, tarragon and sage. Rich, tactile, lightly saline Cabernet Franc with lovely lingering perfume.
WINE ENTHUSIAST ON ECHO RIDGE WINES
2012 Muscat Canelli - 90 Points
A blend of Muscat Canelli and Orange Muscat, this off-dry, stainless-steel fermented wine offers a panoply of scents and flavors. Ripe melon, apricot, candied citrus and the telltale orange zest of Muscat are all here in abundance. The residual sugar is 23 g/L but nicely set against refreshing acidity.
2010 Three Blondes and a Boy - 90 Points
Crafted by Billo Naravane from Rasa Vineyards, this is Echo Ridge's sole blend - a mix of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Cab Franc and 17% Merlot - all from the estate vineyard in eastern Oregon. The blend proves to be a bit more complete than the single varietal offerings, with plum, anise, tobacco and a hint of coconut in the finish.
CHRIS FIGGINS, WINEMAKER, ON 2012 STOLEN HORSE SYRAH
I love this wine aromatically; which leads with dried cranberries, graham crackers, and black licorice, with hints of boysenberries, vanilla, blueberry compote, and dark bitter chocolate. Deliciously fruitiful on the palate with silky smooth tannins, but possessing just enough grip and acidity to keep the wine fresh and in frame. Drinking fantastically right now and will age great for another 7 years for the patient.
WINE ADVOCATE ON RASA VINEYARD WINES
2010 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union - 94 Points
A step up, the 2010 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union is a decadent blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc that was aged in 60% new French oak. Offering up a hedonistically bent bouquet of black currant, smoked herbs, espresso, black olive and lead pencil shavings, it bursts onto the palate with a full-bodied, thick and voluptuous texture that partially conceals sound back-end concentration and structure. Give it 2-4 years and enjoy over the following decade or longer. Drink now-2025.
2012 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union - 94 Points
Checking in as a blend of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 20% Merlot and the balance Petit Verdot, the 2012 In Order to Form A More Perfect Union is both a classic Washington State Bordeaux blend, as well as a classic wine from this estate. It exhibits a deep ruby, mostly opaque color to go with lots of blackcurrants, grilled toast, graphite and dried-violet aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, pure, silky and yet still savory and focused, with a light, balanced feel, good acidity, and plenty of fine tannin that show on the chocolate-laced finish, it's a beautiful wine that can be drunk anytime over the coming 10-15 years.
2012 QED "Axiom of Choice" Cabernet Franc - 93
Building on the QED line, Rasa's 2012 QED Axiom of Choice is a new cuvee made from 100% Cabernet Franc. It's a thrilling Cabernet Franc, and I continue to be impressed with what this variety can acheive in Washington State. Blackcurrants, raspberries, forest floor, crushed flowers and hints of chocolate all emerge from the glass, and on the palate, this beautiful 2012 is medium to full-bodied, silky and polished, with fine tannin and a solid finish. Like all of the wines from the Naravane brothers, it's well made, balanced and has the ability to drink nicely in its youth, yet age gracefully.
STEPHEN TANZER ON RASA VINEYARD WINES
2010 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union - 92+ Points
(43% cabernet sauvignon, 41% merlot and 16% cabernet franc): Good bright, deep red. Red berries, cherry, cocoa powder and licorice on the scented nose. Supple, saline and balanced but youthfully backward, offering red berry and floral flavors complicated by sexy spice notes (from the Allier oak barrels?). No easy sweetness here. Finishes with building, serious tannins that will require at least a few years of cellaring.
2012 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union - 94 Points
The grapes in this impressive Bordeaux style blend are sourced from five different vineyards: Echo Ridge, DuBrul, Kiona, Dionysus, and Weinbau. It is comprised of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 20% Merlot, 11% Petit Verdot. This Cab dominant wine opens with aromas of blackberry, anise, red cherry and dill. There are flavors of blackberry, anise, black cherry and black olive. This has lovely mouthfeel and texture with a strong mineral backbone. Like many of the Rasa '12 releases, this is tough not to enjoy now. Best 2015-2035.
2012 QED "Axiom of Choice" Cabernet Franc - 93
It opens with lovely aromas of red cherry, crushed flowers, raspberry and dill. There are flavors of red cherry, pomegranate, anise and dill. Delicious and lithe with a wonderful minerality. Only 236 cases made of this delicious wine that is up there with the best Cab Franc produced in this state. Best 2015-2028
20/20 RAND SEALEY ON RASA VINEYARD WINES
2012 In Order to Form a More Perfect Union - 20/20 Points
Named for the preamble to the Constitution, this blend of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 20% Merlot and 11% Petit Verdot exhibits an opaque ruby color and an intense, smoky nose of blackberries, raspberries, cherries and plums, with scents of dried roses, sandalwood, cigar wrapper, black olives, leather, and dried orange peel. The flavors, as well, are deep and intense, with fleshy fruits that are imbued with licorice, dark chocolate, French roast, and loam and gravel earth. The back reveals macerated berries, dried cherries and plums, framboise liqueur, mocha, toffee and toasty oak, all gliding into a rich, lingering, sweet-dry tannin finish.
Shows depth and complexity throughout.