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 2021 Dauntless

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2021 Dauntless

 2021 Dauntless
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* Pick-up orders for this wine may require up to 10 business days for processing. Please reach out to the tasting room in advance to confirm order readiness.

Tasting Notes

A Right Bank style blend, displays generous dark and red fruit aromas along with velvet like structure on the palate. Aromas of blackberry jam and dark cassis intertwine with subtle layers of licorice and savory roasted herbs. The palate shows its restrained tannin structure that bursts with flavors of sweet plums, smoked caramel, dark espresso, and hints of sweet pipe tobacco. The wine finishes with remarkably smooth tannins and accentuated notes of French oak that linger on the palate. Enjoy now through 2033 with optimal maturity peaking around 2029.


91 Points, Paul Gregutt | 2021
91 Points & Best Buy, Wine Enthusiast

Vineyard Designation

100% Estate Grown

Vintage Notes

The 2021 vintage will be recorded as one the warmest in Washington State history. With a mild winter and a warm spring, we saw bud break during the second week of April, about 1-2 weeks earlier than average. Then in late June, we experienced a heat wave for approximately 6 weeks. During this time, we saw over 35 days of 100+ degree temperatures, with some daily highs nearing 118 degrees! This period of extreme heat began when the grapes were in a cluster and berry size development stage, causing grapes to stress out weeks before we vintners would prefer. Smaller berry size led to an overall 30% reduction in crop sizes for us. Nevertheless, the flavors that these smaller berries produced were phenomenal! We also saw rapid ripening at a pace we have not seen since 2015, and this created a very early start to harvest. By the end of August, we had brought in nearly 150 tons of sparkling wine grapes and Sauvignon Blanc grapes, hands down an August record for us at Airfield. By the end of September, we had crushed every white varietal, which was beneficial for us in winemaking as we could then give 100% of our attention to red varietals. October started off with nice warm temperatures and the pace of grape harvesting was going very well with ideal ripeness and exceptional quality. By the third week of October, we did see several freezing events causing our canopies to die. With only a limited amount of fruit remaining, it was easy for us to harvest the last remaining fruit before the end of October. In the end, the 2021 vintage made outstanding wine. Our white wines showcase bright fruit aromas with brisk acidity. Our red wines display dark fruit elements with structure and finesse. The wines created from 2021 will be age worthy and enjoyable in their youth and will be wines that will make a lasting impression.

Winemaking Notes

A blend of 50% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, we carefully select blocks on our estate vineyard that are the best suitable for each grape varietal. Our goal when creating a blend of this caliber is to see a bounty of red and dark fruit elements, a nice touch of balanced oak, and soft tannins to create a well-balanced wine. Harvested towards the end of October at optimal maturity, the grapes were sent to various size fermenters, the grapes were then cold soak for 48 before being inoculated with several different strains of yeast. Our extraction approach is to be aggressive at the beginning of fermentation, this allows us to extract the color and flavors. Once alcohol levels start to increase throughout fermentation, we then take a much gentler approach to our extraction as to not overly extract tannins with our end goal being a soft and lush finish wine, yet still maintaining balance and structure. After fermentation, each lot was then sent to a variety of new and neutral French oak barrels and inoculated for malolactic fermentation. After that process, each barrel had its lees stirred twice a month for up to five months to help build structure and roundness while enhancing the mouthfeel and acting as a fining agent to naturally soften the wines. The final blend was aged in 100% French oak for 16 months, with 27% being new French oak, 28% 1 to 3-year-old French oak, and 45% neutral oak.

Food Pairing

Beef Wellington
Turkey with all the trimmings
Beef Stroganoff with Cremini and Porcini Mushrooms
Brie or Colby

  • Varietal Composition: Bordeaux Style Blend
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Aging / Barrel Program: 16 months in 100% French Oak (27% new, 28% 1-3 year, 45% neutral)
  • Cases Produced: 1,700
  • Alcohol: 14.2
  • pH: 3.83
  • Acidity: 5.7 g/L
  • Ageability: Now through 2033

Download Wine Notes