Tuesday, August 04, 2009

A Taste of Two Rooks

Corvidae Rook Columbia Valley Corvidae Rook Oregon
Seeing as how Corvidae Wine Co., the new Owen Roe value label, made two different versions of their 2007 "Rook" red blend, I thought I'd get a bottle of each and taste them head-to-head. First, a little information about each wine, and then the tasting notes.

The Oregon blend was from 100% Southern Oregon fruit: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon from Ironbird Vineyard in the Applegate Valley AVA (also providing all of the fruit for the Owen Roe Ironbird Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon), as well as 15% Syrah and 8% Merlot from undisclosed vineyards in the Rogue Valley AVA. The resulting wine is 13.0% alcohol, and was bottled at Owen Roe's St. Paul, OR winery.

The Washington blend is 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Syrah and 28% Merlot, sourced from undisclosed vineyards in the Columbia Valley AVA (check out the Owen Roe Vineyards List to see the potential vineyards used), and bottled at Owen Roe's new Sunnyside, WA winery. Alcohol is at 14.3%, reflecting the higher brix of their Washington-sourced fruit. And now my tasting notes:
  • 2007 Corvidae Wine Co. Rook Cabernet - Merlot - Syrah - USA, Oregon
    Color is a dark maroon with a bit of purple, just slightly lighter than the Washington wine. Nice fruity nose of blackberries with just a touch of plums and earth. Quite smooth in the mouth, although lacking a bit on the mid-palate...Seems somewhat thin there. Tastes of black fruit and some bittersweet chocolate, with Asian spices, following to a medium length finish. A very tasty blend, but seems like it needs something on the mid-palate. (90 pts.)

  • 2007 Corvidae Wine Co. Rook Cabernet - Merlot - Syrah - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    Color is darker than the Oregon wine, with more purple tones added to the maroon. On the nose, this wine is more sweet smelling, but needs some swirling to bring about the aromas. A touch of black pepper in there also. On the palate, this is much more full-bodied than the Oregon blend, with big blackberry fruit and black pepper notes. Mid-palate is nicely rounded and not as thin as the Oregon blend. The wine ends with a long finish of berry and dark chocolate. Much more sweetness in the fruit also. I definitely like the Washington blend more, although I think both wines will improve with 6-12 months of additional bottle age, but not much more than that. (92 pts.)

Tasting notes posted from CellarTracker