From Spain To Washington State?
Pomum Cellars is owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Javier and Shylah Alfonso. Originally from the famed Ribera del Duero region in Spain, winemaker Javier Alfonso is determined to showcase a true expression of wine grown in the unique viticultural areas in Washington State.
Alfonso works with several vineyards in the Columbia Valley including Dubrul, Konnowac and Dineen Vineyards in the Yakima Valley, Upland Vineyard on Snipes Mountain and Elerding Vineyards in both the Yakima Valley and Horse Heaven Hills. In 2003, Alfonso planted his own estate vineyard, AD Dunn, in the Yakima Valley near Zillah with Tempranillo and Merlot.
In addition to Pomum, Alfonso also produces wines under his Idilico Label where he highlights Spanish varietals like Tempranillo
2005 Pomum Shya Red Yakima Valley, WA
This purchase of mine was Gary Vaynerchuck inspired after his astounding 95 point score on the good old days of Wine Library TV. Other reviewers not that impressed with mediocre scores of 85 etc from Wine Enthusiast. Gary was ALWAYS on point with my palate so I went with his stellar review and bought one online back in 2008. Shya I assume named after SHYLAH Alfonso was always a Cabernet Sauvignon dominant blend from the best vineyard sites as you see above in Yakima Valley. This 2005 is 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot,10% Caberent Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. Only 3300 BOTTLES not CASES produced. Aged in 59 Gallon French Oak Barrels for 18 months 30% Are new and then held back and bottle aged for another 17 months before release. 2005 was a powerhouse vintage for the EverGRAPE State including the NUMBER ONE Wine of the Year was the 2005 Columbia Crest Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon for a Whopping $30 on Wine Spectator;s Top 100 List. I knew 10 years would be no problem for a muscular vintage like this with 14.7% ABV and solid acidity levels. Let’s see if I agree with Gary Vee or not?
This even at the 15 year mark needed aggressive aeration. It was concerning me at first that this was going to be a High Alcohol Dave Phinney from Orin Swift type wine but it opened and settled after 90 minutes. The color was a deep dark ruby red with some purple hues and on the very edge a very light pink indicating a 10-15 year old vintage. Aromas came off a little hot at first but very pretty. Pow smack with Crushed Cranberry meets POM Juice meets raspberry sprinkled with Chinese 5 Spice powder, black olive or a slight briny component and floral notes. A gigantic mid palate like a Warm Vintage Right Bank Bordeaux on Steroids with really powerful fruit and a very focused and on point wine from entry to finish and nice dusting of bittersweet chocolate. My only negative for me was too much spice and astringency on the finish and the wine is kind of Mollydooker Heady. Wine Enthusiast way way underscored it but Gary Vee IMHO Slightly over scored it not deducting for the SPICY HEAT and headiness. ANY Red Meat Dish would do well with this focused powerhouse beauty. This is my Second Pomum Wine and Captain Washington sees big things as a Cult Wine for the Alfonso’s in the future. For $34 California couldn’t come close to this quality and focus. I will score it 92+ and probably higher if the Dry Aged Ribeye was paired with it. The wine needs food.
If any 2005 Wine from Washington State Reds don’t convert you from Napa in the $30 price range…Nothing Will. Pomum, I doubt will ever increase production to see any availability in retail stores so either join their wine club or put your email on their list. These stories of Javier and Shyla and small production boutique wineries are nothing unique. There are over 1000 of these type family wineries putting out the best darn wines you will get for your money in the country. The Rain and The Grapes from Spain Fall Mainly on ….Yakima Valley. I obviously am clearly biased not towards this family but Washington State is as I always say The “Real Wine Country”
Grape-fully yours, Larry
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