Wine Advocate 87 points - Named in an allusion to the three families that own Pepper Bridge (the McKibbens, Goffs and Pellets) as well as its being their third reserve wine (after the two single-vineyard designates), the 2009 Trine represents a blend of roughly equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with very small shares of Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. ?The plan in the next few years,? notes Pellet, ?is for this to become 30-35% Cab Franc-based; but we?re not there yet? until young vines start producing. Here is yet another example of lots of sweet, confitured fruit up-front; full body, but a glassy feel on the palate; then drying, clearly wood-induced astringency in the finish. Admirable ripeness for just 14.1% alcohol and a certain sort of dogged persistence, yes, but I find no particular charm here, nor inducement to take the proverbial second sip. After 20 months in barrel, it was held after bottling until late 2012, and I would be skeptical about any long-term cellaring. (Mar 2013)
Launched in 1998, Pepper Bridge Winery is a small, family owned estate located in Walla Walla Valley, Washington. Pepper Bridge is the brainchild of three different partners: Norm McKibben, Ray Goff and winemaker Jean-Francois Pellet.
Pepper Bridge wines are small production, hand-crafted red wines made from grapes harvested from two of the states finest vineyards, Pepper Bridge and Seven Hills. Both vineyards are planted on mineral rich soils of glacial loess and silty loam. Both vineyards are certified Salmon Safe and the winery is a member of two highly regarded sustainability associations, VINEA and LIVE.
|Wine maker notes
|The word ’trine’ is defined as a close group of three, and this wine pays homage to the families of Pepper Bridge: the McKibbens, Goffs and Pellets. As with our Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, Trine showcases the best of our Walla Walla Valley estate vineyards. However, it allows Winemaker Jean-Francois Pellet more freedom of expression since it a creative blend rather than varietal-based wine. Each vintage will contain a unique combination of Bordeaux’s traditional five red grapes.
|At Pepper Bridge Winery our focus is to make ultra-premium, world-class red wines with grapes sourced solely from the Walla Walla Appellation.
The Walla Walla Valley is critically acclaimed for growing some of the highest quality red wine grapes. Our estate vineyards, Pepper Bridge Vineyard and Seven Hills Vineyard, are recognized as two of the best in the region.
Our vision to build a state-of-the-art, gravity-flow winery began several years ago when Norm McKibben, Managing Partner planted his first grapes in the Walla Walla Valley. The vision grew into reality with the completion of Pepper Bridge Winery in September of 2000. We’ve built the winery to encompass a gravity flow system that is extremely gentle on the grapes and wine. From the crush pad on our top level to the barrels located 32’ below in the caves, the wine flows effortlessly and gently.