What we’re drinking: Stevens Winery

Brynn writes:

This week’s wine is from a winemaker situated in Woodinville’s warehouse district.

Tim Stevens and his wife Paige run Stevens Winery, which the couple opened in 2002. They started small with 100 cases of cabernet franc and now produce multiple varieties of red and white wines.

On a recent tasting visit to the winery, which is a shared tasting room and production area, we tried five of the wines.

They included the 2010 StevensDivio Viognier, 2009 StevensMerlot, 2008 Stevens424 Red Wine, 2009 StevensTimely Malbec and 2008 StevensXY Reserve Cabernet. We were also lucky enough to barrel taste the sauvignon blanc, which had been harvested at the end of 2011 and was in its final stages in nearby steel tanks.

All of the wines we tasted presented well. My favorite was probably either the 424 Red or the XY Reserve Cab.

What I found interesting about the 424 blend, is that while it’s Tim Stevens’ Bordeaux blend, instead of being dominated by merlot or cabernet sauvignon, the dominant grape variety is cabernet franc.

Considering cab franc is one of my favorite varietals, there’s probably little surprise then that the 424 topped my “Would Drink Again” list.

The cab blends — there’s only 3 percent difference between the cab franc (39 percent) and cab sauvignon (36 percent) — give this wine its earthy notes. The other varietals, including merlot (17 percent), malbec (7 percent) and petit verdot (3 percent), round out the flavor giving the wine complexity and weight.

Stevens sources his grapes for this wine from four vineyards including Dineen, Dubrul, Meek and Sheridan. The wine is aged in 50 percent new French oak and 50 percent once used French oak for 20 months.

As the fan favorite, the winery produces more 424 than anything else, 525 cases worth to be exact.

The XY Reserve Cab is the winery’s “dense and intense” all cab blend, according to the winery.

“Dark fruit from Sheridan Vineyard and earthy finesse from Meek Vineyard were added to round out the body of the wine. The result created a wine that is big, bold, integrated and multi-layered,” according to tasting notes.

Only 290 cases of this wine were produced.

Stevens Winery is located at 18520 142nd Ave NE in Woodinville. It’s in the area’s warehouse district, where many other wineries also operate — which means you can go to multiple wineries in one stop without having to move your car. Genius!