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A family-owned business, L'Ecole Nº 41 was founded by Jean and Baker Ferguson. Today, the winery is owned and operated by their daughter and son-in-law, Megan and Martin Clubb. Built in 1915, the schoolhouse is located in historic Frenchtown, a small community just west of Walla Walla, Washington. Frenchtown derived its name from the many French-Canadians who settled the valley during the early 1800s. Legend has it, these men of French descent were raising grapes and producing wine. By the...
Layered with enticing aromas of black cherry, violet, and plum, this full bodied Merlot shows balanced layers of red fruit and cocoa on a seamless finish of fine-grained tannin.
The 2015 vintage in Washington is now the warmest vintage on record. Bud break was two or three weeks early. That set a pattern for the year with flowering, fruit set, Veraison, and harvest occurring similarly early. An unusual number of excessive heat days in July (over 95 F) resulted in some vine shut down and early exposure to sunburn. Proper irrigation and canopy management were critical to ensure vine health and quality fruit health during the unusually hot July. Mid-August temperatures moderated with cooler nights stimulating color and structure development. Classically moderate fall temperatures kicked in extending hang-time. Vines adapted to the three year warm cycle, delivering the earliest harvest on record with lower yields due to smaller berries, higher sugars and lower acids, yet deeply colored structured reds with exciting potential.
Over 30 years of meticulous vineyard management and winemaking experience are fundamental to the quality of L'Ecole no 41's wines and reputation for excellence. They are fully engaged in growing and making 100% of their wines. Each lot was hand harvested ripe and gently crushed into 1.5 and 5 ton stainless steel fermenters. Gentle handling of the fruit through hand punch downs and gravity assisted movements were utilized throughout the entire winemaking process. The wine was cleanly racked to 100% small oak barrels, 30% new, with four rackings over 18 months.
- 92 Points -
Blackberry and violet aromas with hints of hazelnut. Medium-bodied and layered. Polished tannins and a flavorful finish.See detailed press review