It’s a strange price point to have to try and hit-$15 or so for Cabernet Sauvignon. When you start to consider set up costs for a vineyard (which runs approximately $50,000 per acre), it’s difficult to hit this price point. Plus and perhaps more importantly if you’re buying this bottle-it’s a damn good bottle of wine this Skyfall Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. Of course I hope you enjoy listening to, or reading this Skyfall Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon review.
Hi, guys. Mark Aselstine with Uncorked Ventures. Today, I’m joined by a Skyfall Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, so this is a Washington State wine made in 2014. I thought this was interesting for a few different points. First, this is $15 a bottle. Wine Enthusiast gives it 87 points. I think it does an outstanding job of doing something that I’ve talked about here ad nauseum at times. $15-$25 price point, based on the cost of land alone in Washington State gives you a hell of a lot better bang for your bucks oftentimes than much of California. That’s just a fact. I love California wine, but it is what it is.
Secondly, I also think this is a sign of Washington wine starting to grow up a little bit. If you read the back here, it says Dave Minick is a third-generation Washington wine grower, and that’s all true. One of the things that happens after people have been in the wine industry for a little while and get down into the second or third generation is they start coming up with these outside-the-box ideas. Skyfall is actually a joint project by Mr. Minick and a larger wine and spirits company based back on the East coast. They’ve developed the Skyfall vineyard, and they’re developing this brand. They’re making, I think, five or six different wines. I believe there’s about 100,000 cases in total that are being produced out of Walla Walla, which makes it either the second or the third largest winery, depending on the year.
They’ve created a large project. They’re fairly pricing the wine, and they’re creating it so that it can show up on grocery store shelves. This is what we’ve talked about a little bit here in that California vineyards do worry about this kind of stuff. Sure, California, because of the hot inland valleys, are always going to be able to produce Two Buck Chuck, $4 or $5 wine. That’s always going to be people’s first entry point, unless they’re drinking the French sea of wine that we get in Southern France. The second step up from that is often the $15 or so per bottle range. That’s where Washington starts to pick off sales. California then starts to worry, if Washington’s picked these folks off at the $15 to $25 price point, when you start getting to the $45 or $40 price point, if they’re able to then steer them back to Napa and Sonoma, if Napa even exists any more at $40. It probably doesn’t.
In any case, Skyfall. This is a really, really good wine. It’s listed as Columbia Valley. Just as a quick reminder, Columbia Valley, in essence is the entirety of the state of Washington and a chunk of Oregon. Rivers make for nice geographic boundaries if you’re a state or a municipality. However, for a wine region, if you think about a river running through the middle of the valley, one side of the river versus the other, as much as we like to talk about Bordeaux being two separate places, left and right bank, really the growing conditions are the same, so the Columbia Valley AVA is actually shared between Washington and Oregon State. That’s one of the fun things. You’ll sometimes see wines listed as not California and not Oregon, not Washington, but they’ll actually just list USA. That’s when they come from multiple states, so it’s fun.
In any case, Mark Aselstine with Uncorked Ventures. This Skyfall Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon review, from Columbia Valley and the 2014 Washington vintage. It’s a pretty darn nice price point at $15. This is a good job by them, and I think this is something that as wine buyers at grocery stores begin to see people buying, you’ll start seeing more and more of this stuff happen. I hope everyone’s having a good week, and we’ll talk to you soon. I also think this is a good point of, 87 points for $15 is a good deal. That’s one of the reasons why none of my three wine clubs are listed as 90 points or above. Production on this is too high for me to ship it, but theoretically, if it was smaller production and maybe a tad more interesting on the palate, this is a little generic at times, I could ship this along with a more expensive bottle to my exploration wine club folks, which is our cheapest option, and probably get somewhere pretty quickly. Once again, hope everybody’s having a good one.
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