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Quintessence & Red Willow: A Tale of Two Vineyards

In the Yakima Valley, Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon thrive on the vine at Quintessence Vineyard (Red Mountain AVA) and Red Willow Vineyard (Yakima Valley AVA). These two acclaimed sites are known for their premium fruit, and the pursuit of constant discovery led our winemaking team to bring these two vineyards together in a blend that was meant to be: our Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon blend called Minuit, the French word for “midnight” (pronounced Min-whee).

The result of blending Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon, Minuit shows ripe, mouth-watering acidity and tannins with flavors of assorted berries, violets, earth, and black pepper spices.

Minuit Origin Story

The first vintage of our Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon blend, 2014, was sourced solely from Quintessence Vineyard and only available to Club members.  The wine was simply labeled as Quintessence Vineyard Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon.  Inquiries from members prompted us to bottle the blend again from the 2016 vintage. To say it stirred up new levels of passion in the winery is an understatement, and the reception it received through our Wine Club inspired us to seek out other vineyard sources to complement the blend from Quintessence.

Red Willow Vineyard, one of Washington State’s pioneering vineyards, grows exceptional Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon.  Through our blending trials, our winemaking team created a blend of Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon from both Quintessence and Red Willow.  Finding an exceptional new wine with the combination of these two noble varietals and vineyard sites, the next task was to name this blend.

Behind the Name

Minuit, or Midnight, is the time of day that delineates one day from the next, at once the beginning of something new and the end of a defined and fundamental cycle. This wine, black as night, embodies this notion: the conclusion of our journey in the vineyard and the cellar, and the beginning of discovering the wine’s potential in the bottle and in the glass.

DeLille’s philosophy of seeking and discovery via blending trials in the cellar often lends way to the creation of new wines.  Some of this evolution comes as smaller lots garner such a following that they evolve into something even greater.  Our team’s dedication to quality and honoring the vineyard sites and varietals is always paramount.  Our seeking never stops, and as one wine might evolve and grow, there will always be another new wine, new lot, or new vineyard site ready to be explored and shared with our members.

The 2020 Vintage

The union of Malbec (72%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (28%) prove their compatibility once again in our 2020 Minuit, offering aromas of blueberry compote, green peppercorn, fennel seed, and wild blackberry.  The Malbec adds juicy, brambly fruits and a fleshy texture that begs for the well-structured Red Mountain Cabernet, which in turn adds a touch of sanguine and tobacco leaf.  The palate shows great concentration and weight, with the vibrant dark fruits elevating the wine and bringing energy to the finish.  Best enjoyed with your favorite meats from the grill. – N.B.

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