One of the great stops in Woodinville, Darby was founded by Darby English who first began making wine in 2001. By 2005 he was making 200 cases of Syrah. Two years later he opened his tasting room in Woodinville in the warehouse district. Darby sources from some of the best vineyards in the state including Stonetree, Connor Lee, and Stillwater Creek. Darby was taught by some of the best as Mark McNiely of Mark Ryan Winery, Tim Stevens of Stevens Winery, Chris Gorman of Gorman Winery and Bob Betz of Betz Family Winery have served as previous mentors. He currently makes between 3500 to 4000 cases per year and now has some excellent Bordeaux style wines, along with the Rhone varietals. There is a typical poise and structure to his wines, as they show nice fruit but wonderful restraint as well.
A recent visit to their Woodinville tasting room impressed. Look for their 2014 ‘Le Deuce’ White Wine (WWB, 90) which is a solid blend of Viognier and Roussanne that is downright delicious. Also impressive was their 2012 ‘Aunt Lee’ Syrah (WWB, 91) which showed marvelous structure and mineralogy with dark fruit flavors. Learn more about this great winery at http://www.darbywinery.com/wine/ Here are the great new wines by Darby Winery.
2014 Darby 'Le Deuce' White Wine- This wine is an excellent blend of 56% Viognier and 44% Roussanne. The wine begins with aromatics of lemongrass, white peach, lychee and hints of New York apple. There are flavors of nectarine, Welches white grape juice, lemon zest, and lovely minerality with a slight saline streak. Drink 2017-2021- 90
2014 Darby 'Live Wire' Rose- This is a Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre based Rose wine that truly needs a hot summer day. There are aromatics of rose petals, red cherry and ripe strawberry. This leads to flavors of red cherry, red raspberry, teaberry and suggestions of orange rind. Drink 2017-2020- 89
2012 Darby 'Flip Side' Red Wine- This excellent Rhone style wine is a blend of 38% Grenache, 34% Syrah with 28% Mourvèdre. It opens with aromatics of smoked meats, rose petals, red cherry and hints of orange rind. There are flavors reminiscent of red cherry, red raspberry, black tea and orange rind. Drink 2017-2024- 90
2012 Darby 'Aunt Lee' Syrah- This great Syrah wine was aged for 18 months in French oak (50% new). The wine begins with aromatics of black tea, smoked pork shoulder, black olive and black cherry. There are flavors reminiscent of blackberry cobbler, black tea, anise and black cherry. Like many of the Darby wines, this has excellent structure and will cellar beautifully into the next decade. Drink 2017-2025- 91
2011 Darby 'Chaos' Red Blend- This intriguing wine is a blend of 32% Cabernet, 28% Merlot, 22% Petite Verdot and 18% Cabernet Franc. The wine begins with aromatics of sage, green bell pepper, red cherry and hints of coffee grounds. There are flavors reminiscent of black cherry, mocha, sage, roasted dates and coffee grounds. This shows wonderful poise and is pretty irresistible right now. Drink 2017-2027- 91
2011 Darby 'Swagger' Red Wine- This cold vintage Cabernet wine has 10% Malbec added to it. The wine was aged for 18 months in French oak (70% new) prior to bottling. The wine starts with aromas of black tea, sandalwood, black cherry and black olive. There are flavors reminiscent of black tea, anise, red bell pepper and hints of white pepper. Drink 2017-2025-89