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J Bookwalter Conflict Red Blend 2020

J Bookwalter Conflict Red Blend 2020

Columbia Valley, Washington

Regular price $67.99 USD
Regular price Sale price $67.99 USD
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  • Tasting Notes

    The 2020 Conflict Red Blend by J Bookwalter is a captivating symphony of flavors, offering an enchanting bouquet of lavender, cedar, and dark fruits such as currant, black cherry, and dark plum, complemented by notes of dark chocolate. Crafted from a blend of 56% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot, and 3% Cabernet Franc, this full-bodied wine boasts silky tannins and a smooth, bright cherry profile with a subtle hint of baking spice. Bordeaux-like characteristics emerge on the palate, with a lingering finish of graphite and dark cacao chocolate.

    A true masterpiece, the 2020 Conflict promises a multi-layered tasting experience that evolves with each sip. Whether enjoyed now or cellared for future indulgence, it is a testament to the artistry and dedication of its creators, offering a complex yet harmonious blend that delights the senses and leaves a lasting impression.

  • Story

    The story of J. Bookwalter Winery is one of family heritage, deep roots, and a centuries-old commitment to the land. For ten generations, the Bookwalter family has been entrenched in American agriculture, culminating in the establishment of J. Bookwalter Winery in 1982 by Jerry Bookwalter. Jerry, part of the ninth generation, transitioned the family from traditional farming into viticulture. He played a pivotal role in managing the plantings of the renowned Sagemoor, Bacchus, and Dionysus vineyards before becoming the vineyard manager of the prestigious Conner Lee Vineyard, which remains a vital grape source for the winery. Jerry's son, John Bookwalter, grew up in these vineyards but left in the late 1980s for a successful sales and marketing career. He returned in 1997 with a renewed vision for the winery, making significant improvements and expansions that solidified J. Bookwalter's reputation.

    Under John Bookwalter's leadership, J. Bookwalter Winery has evolved from one of Washington’s oldest wineries into one of the Pacific Northwest's most recognized boutique wine brands. Their wines are uniquely themed around literary concepts, reflecting a playful nod to the family name. This creative branding, coupled with their commitment to supporting literacy in Eastern Washington, underscores their dedication to both quality and community. In 2021, John entrusted the winemaking responsibilities to Jeremy Santo, a highly regarded winemaker, ensuring that the winery's tradition of excellence continues. Today, J. Bookwalter is celebrated for its exceptional vineyard sources and meticulous winemaking, producing some of the world's finest wines.

  • Somm Notes

    The fruit for Conflict was a mixture of Pellane harvested as well as handpicked berries. Pick dates for the Merlot were in late September with the Cabernet Sauvignon coming off the vines in mid-October. We used a whole berry fermentation, technique with punch downs and pump-overs taking place 2-3 times daily. Primary fermentation lasted 14 days at which point we had gained optimum extraction. The wine was lightly pressed off its skins. Elevage took place in large format puncheons with a combination of new and neutral oak, then aged on lees for 20 months.

    Pairing Suggestion Savory Duck Stroganoff

    Drinking Window 2022-2030

    94 Robert Parker - Wine Advocate
    Bursting with a gorgeous, seductive nose of fresh, spiced red and black fruit, the 2020 Conflict is a blend of 56% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Beyond the fresh fruit aromas, elegant oak essences vibrantly dance out of the glass. Full-bodied, lively and expressive, the palate is plummy, with elegant baking spices uncoiling before ending with an ever-evolving, lingering, spicy finish. Rating : 94+

    93 James Suckling
    A merlot-based blend that shows mint, chocolate, sandalwood, spice box and poached plum aromas. Orange slices, too. It’s full-bodied, plush and polished, with silky tannins and a rich and delicious finish.

    90 Wine Enthusiast
    This blend is a tannic beast that needs decanting or time to tame. Aged for 20 months in French oak, 70% new, its leathery texture and grippy tannins are like a vinous version of a Spartan battle tunic. Aromas and flavors of boysenberries, blackberries, black tea and lilacs. Only brave hearts need approach.

    Two things: One - I love a well thought out brand and with other wines named after literary terms like conflict, protagonist, sublot, and others named after something book related - notebook and readers. It's a delightful turn at branding - chef's kiss.

    Two - I love when a region that is not as widely recognized really produces a stunner. Bookwalter wines do just that, consistent quality, and a depth of complexity that makes the argument that you shouldn't sleep on Washington wines - especially those reds!

    An hour max drive from Seattle, and you can find yourself sipping some Bookwalter Wines at their tasting room in Woodinville. Enjoy the occasional live music and food on their outdoor patio.

    J. Bookwalter Winery is dedicated to the community and the advancement of Washington state wines. Their commitment to literacy and education is demonstrated through corporate giving to local charities, including The Children’s Reading Foundation of the Mid-Columbia, Hugo House in Seattle, the King County Library System Foundation, and the Columbia Basin College Scholarship Foundation. Active in the Tri-Cities community, John Bookwalter and his team participate on boards and committees such as Visit Tri-Cities and the Tri-City Cancer Center. Additionally, John has served as chair of the Washington State Wine Commission and, along with his wife Gretchen, has been an honorary co-chair of the Auction of Washington Wines, highlighting their dedication to both community and industry support.

  • Region

    2020 was a relatively warm year for Washington with a significantly smaller crop. Bud break began in mid-April, well-aligned with historical averages. October temperatures were above average before a freeze event on October 25th brought the growing season to a close in many locations. While the crop was smaller, the combination of smaller berries and extended hang time is traditionally a recipe for high-quality wines in Washington.

    The 2020 Conflict blend sources its grapes from three prestigious vineyards within Washington state: Conner-Lee Vineyards, Dionysus Vineyards, and Elephant Mountain Vineyards.

    Conner-Lee Vineyards, contributing 46% of the blend, is renowned for its superior terroir and meticulous viticultural practices. Established in 1980 under the guidance of viticulturist Dr. Walter Clore, it boasts fine sandy loam soils and a cool, extended ripening season, ideal for producing wines of exceptional texture and complexity. With a diverse array of grape varieties, including Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, and Merlot, Conner-Lee consistently delivers wines of outstanding quality.

    Dionysus Vineyards, comprising 44% of the blend, is nestled within the White Bluffs AVA, a plateau in south-central Washington known for its unique subsoil, the Ringold Formation. Planted in 1988, Dionysus features some of the oldest vines in the state, producing rich and dense grapes thanks to its established root system and southwest-facing slopes. With varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Riesling thriving in its royal fine sandy loam soil, Dionysus exemplifies the art of sustainable farming and precise vineyard management.

    Elephant Mountain Vineyards, contributing 10% of the blend, is located in the Rattlesnake Hills AVA, characterized by its higher elevation and sedimentary soil deposits. With elevations ranging from 850 to 3,085 feet, Elephant Mountain benefits from warmer winter temperatures and reduced frost risk, creating an optimal environment for grape cultivation. Planted in the Yakima Valley, this vineyard focuses on varieties like Merlot and Syrah, harnessing the unique geological features of the region to produce wines of unparalleled depth and character.