A Happy Ending at L’Ecole


Our last tasting of the day on our Walla Walla wine tour weekend was at L’Ecole No. 41 in the historic Frenchtown School just outside of Walla Walla in Lowden.  The building was built in 1915,  to replace the first Frenchtown School, a log cabin from 1870.  L’Ecole was founded in 1983, and is the third oldest winery in the Walla Walla area.

We arrived towards the end of the day, but our server was more than gracious about guiding us through a tasting and answering our questions.  The tasting room retains many of the original historic features, including the hardwood floors, and has been decorated with period Barrister Bookcases collected by the winery’s original owner. The ambiance of the tasting room just adds to the charm.

L 'Ecole No. 41 Tasting Room in the Historic Frenchtown School

L ‘Ecole No. 41 Tasting Room in the Historic Frenchtown School

We began with the 2011 Estate Luminesce, a blend of 67% Semillon and 33% Sauvignon Blanc, from Seven Hills Vineyard.  It showed tart citrus and floral flavors.  Then we had the 2011 Columbia Valley Chardonnay, a very well balanced wine with apple and minerality on light oak.  It is a Chardonnay that both Jon and I can enjoy because it is a great balance between the unoaked Chards that I love and the big, buttery Chards that are Jon’s favorites.

Moving on to the red wines, we started with the 2009 Estate Merlot, with grapes from the Seven Hills Vineyard.  It was a nicely balanced wine with medium tannins and black cherry flavors. The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon is a bold wine aged in 40% new oak, with flavors of tobacco and heavier tannins.

Next we tried the 2009 Estate Perigee, a blend of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Malbec, and 4% Petit Verdot.  This is a very elegant Bordeaux blend that was aged for 22 months – a very nice wine.

The last wine that we tasted was the Candy Mountain Vineyard Red Wine.  It hasn’t been released yet; it will come out in April 2013.  It is a blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Merlot.  This is a fantastic wine with flavors of blackberry and chocolate.  There are only 350 cases, and I’m sure it will sell quickly.  I was pretty disappointed that I couldn’t buy it that day!

It was a great end to a wonderful day of wine tasting – L ‘Ecole was a real treat.

7 thoughts on “A Happy Ending at L’Ecole

  1. Hello! I noticed you looked at one of my reviews on a Gewurz from Navarro and when I visited your blog, I saw you were also in Walla Walla as we had been around the same time. We also went to Tero, Flying Trout and L’Ecole 41…And I put up posts about our two weeks in Napa and Sonoma as well as Oregon which may be helpful to you in your travels! Are you going to go to the Wine Bloggers’ Conference in Penticton this June? Lindsay/Winellama :)

    • That’s too funny! We were there the last weekend in February. We actually just got back from a California trip (posts to come) and we spent a day in the Anderson Valley. Navarro came recommended but we didn’t have the energy for one more tasting (I was getting over the stomach flu the day we went).

      I thought a few months ago about going but got sidelined with my cat who had cancer and forgot about it. I looked at it again – I would love to, so I’m going to look into whether I can get the days off. Are you going to go? Where are you located? Camille

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