2011 Ashlyn’s Vineyard Columbia Valley Private Reserve Red, WA $8.99

Silverdale, WA    14.1% alc.    (Purchased on 1/24/14)

IMG_139970% Syrah 23% Cabernet Sauvignon 7% Merlot   Best I can tell is that this blend is produced by  Amelia Bleu Wines and Ashlyn’s Vineyard in Chelan in north central WA.  They apparently have or had a tasting room in Woodinville too…just east of Seattle.

Upon uncorking, there was a thin layer of dark purple sludge on the underside of the cork and around the inside neck of the bottle.  Opaque beautiful dark purple in color; attractive nose of black fruit; plummy, jammy aromas with underlying oak.  First thing that hit my palate was almost racy acidity, producing a tingly tartness on the front and sides of my tongue.  What tastes like new oak was more pronounced than I expected it to be (based on the nose).  The acidity gives it more pie cherry flavors rather than the blackberry and black plum I might have expected.  There are some plum flavors, but unripe plum.  There’s decent tannin here too, but it’s integrated well with the fruit and acidity.  The oak is strongest in the finish…and a little more than I’d prefer.  There’s a bit of warming heat in the finish too.

A few years may bring this blend into better balance…hard to say.  Not bad, but for me, the acid and oak are distracting from the fruit.  Seems a bit disjointed right now, so I’ll give it a low end Thumbs Up…close to Drinkable.  Perhaps it’s just not for me.


11 thoughts on “2011 Ashlyn’s Vineyard Columbia Valley Private Reserve Red, WA $8.99

  1. roger emigh

    I am just trying the 2012 Private Reserve Red from Ashlyn’s that I got at Grocery Outlet and finding it very nice, I would expect it to even smooth and improve over the next couple of years. I have some experience with Columbia Valley cabs from the Walla Walla region, this Red has some of the expected flavour characteristics that I was hoping for, I am heading back tomorrow to grab up more…

    1. lim13 Post author

      Thanks for reporting in, Roger. The 2012 certainly sounds better than the 2011 and I believe it appeared at the Silverdale, WA store a month or so ago. But I passed it by based on my impressions of the 2011 and it may now be gone. I’ll have a look. By the way…you mention Columbia Valley Cab…is that the larger percentage varietal in the 2012 blend? And what other grapes are involved?

      1. roger emigh

        I am not sure the percentage of grapes, it is not on the 2012 label, but it certainly tasted like it had more cab and merlot than the 2011 had…and at least here in Oregon, it is $6.99…

  2. Doug

    Lim 13 thanks you for trying our red blend. You are correct in our tasting room label is Amelia Bleu. The vineyard is located in Chelan.WA and we actually do all our wine processing in Woodinville,WA. If you are ever in Woodinville come by the warehouse district and if you are in Chelan come by Firehouse5 in Manson. We have a couple more wines that should be in GO later. Our best is our Merlot!

    Thanks again for tasting!!!

    1. lim13 Post author

      Very nice to hear from you, Doug. Can I assume you’re the owner? winemaker? If not…how are you involved with the winery? My wife and I toured the Chelan AVA a couple of years ago, but I wasn’t familiar with your wines. Haven’t been to Woodinville in many years, but I know it’s nothing like it was last time I was there. Would like to get by sometime soon, but I’ve just turned into such a homebody. I’ll get there! Thanks too for the heads-up on more of your wines at GO. I’ll be looking for the Merlot in particular.

        1. lim13 Post author

          I have intentionally avoided getting involved with Facebook, Doug…for a number of reasons i.e. personal privacy, the need for less time at a computer etc. So perhaps one of our readers could help with this?


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