Cayuse was founded in 1997 by Christophe Baron, a native of France who grew up in family of winemakers in Champagne. Baron studied viticulture in Burgundy and Champagne, and had ambitions to make Pinot Noir in Oregon. However, on a visit to Walla Walla he found property that he believed would be perfect for growing grapes and decided to purchase the land.
God Only Know is sourced from the Armada Vineyard. At 1815 vines per acre, the 7-acre site, planted in 2001, was the highest density planting in the Walla Walla Valley until 2008. Other wines from the vineyard include the Armada Syrah and Edith Grenache Rosé.
Crimson in color. 13.9% ABV. Savory nose of red fruits, olive brine, blood and minerals. Medium body with medium acidity. Plush and silky on the palate. Flavors of cherry, strawberry, barbecued meats and garrigue. The finish is long and supple. Delicious Grenache in spite of the challenging vintage although it lacks the concentration and power of other recent bottlings. Best over the next 2-3 years.
My rating: 93 points.
The waiting list for the Cayuse mailing list is huge and you need to be well-connected to get a bottle via retail. Either way, current vintages are worth the hunt!
Last year Christophe Baron finally made the cover of the Wine Spectator. Cayuse, Horsepower and No Girls make some of the top wines in Washington. Christophe recently launched a new project, Hors Categorie. Lastly, Christophe at long last announced the upcoming release of his first vintage Champagne. Champagne Christophe Baron. I have a magnum on order. More to come here later.