McQueen Vineyard

McQueen Vineyard
AVA
Walla Walla Valley
Acres
40
Latitude
45 degrees 50' 40' N
Longitude
118 degrees 28' 13' W
Elevations
1200-1425 feet
Soil
Wind-blown Glacial Loess
Rainfall
8-9 inches per year
Trellising
VSP
Planted
Spring 2007
Varietals
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot
Close

2013 Vintage Doubleback

Bunches of grapes

2013 was a fabulous vintage in Walla Walla. The season started with early bud break, and a warm wet spring. Fortunately, we had no rain at bloom time and set a beautiful crop. We thought harvest was going to be ultra-condensed due to the consistently warm summer, but the last two weeks of September and the first week of October brought a cool front with and unusual amount of moisture. We began by bringing in Bob Healy Cabernet Sauvignon on September 16th and proceeded picking other ripe lots throughout the month as they slowly matured. The cooler weather extended hang-time, softened tannins, and gave us time to give each lot the absolute attention it deserves. We finished harvesting on October 16th with McQueen Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s fascinating to me that these two sites, only 1.6 miles apart, have such unique microclimates that they ripened a month apart! The vintage overall reminds me of 2008 and will absolutely be a winner and crowd-pleaser.

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Close

Viticulture

Drew in the vineyard

Doubleback was conceived from the dirt. It all started in the vineyard with the long term goal of producing only estate wine. We believe in using only the best site- specific viticulture practices including high density planting, Compostea and water conservation all under the sustainable growing practices of VINEA. We have an intense focus in our goal to create what we hope to be a world class vineyard producing exceptional wine.

Close

Bob Healy Vineyard

Bob Healy Vineyard
AVA
Walla Walla Valley
Acres
9.7
Latitude
45 degrees 55' 43.8' N
Longitude
118 degrees 25' 50.4' W
Elevations
1170-1370 feet
Soil
Walla Walla Silt Loams
Rainfall
9 inches per year
Trellising
VSP
Planted
2007
Varietals
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Tempranillo
Close

Drew's Cellar

Drew's cellar
September 4, 2012

Well, it’s that time of year again. We are getting settled into the school year and fall sports schedule after a great summer. We had an excellent time at our cabin in Montana for a few weeks and were able to dip into the cellar a bit as well. Continue

December 25, 2011

I pulled the 2007 & 2008 vintages of Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon from my cellar tonight to enjoy with our family Christmas dinner. Continue

August 31, 2011

We have had a great summer (once it finally began in July!), lots of friends came to visit which gave us an excuse to dive into our cellar a bit. Thank you to all of you who assisted us in our tasting endeavors. Great to have friends to help out in our time of need! Continue

March 21, 2011

We've been drinking a lot of Pinot Noir lately. The Willamette Valley in Oregon was blessed with an amazing vintage in '08 (coincidentally so was the Walla Walla Valley!). We've tried WV pinots at virtually every price point over the past few months. Continue

Close

Media

For press or media inquiries please contact us at info@doubleback.com

Close

Contact

Doubleback PO Box 518
Walla Walla, WA 99362
Phone 509-525-3334
info@doubleback.com

Emily Beamer

Manager

Dana Johnson

Compliance Manager / Winery Assistant

Doubleback Distributors

Tasting Room

We invite you to visit the Doubleback Tasting Room and sample our classic Walla Walla Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, which has been crafted with power and elegance by our consulting winemaker, Chris Figgins, of Figgins Family Wine Estates.

Cheers,

Drew and Maura Bledsoe

Open by appointment only

For a private tasting, call 509-525-3334
or email dana@doubleback.com

Tasting Room Location

229 E Main St, Walla Walla, WA 99362

Tasting Room
Close

Drew McQueen Bledsoe

Drew and Maura Bledsoe

For former NFL Quarterback Drew Bledsoe, owning a winery has been a longtime aspiration that would allow him to combine his passion for fine wine and the love of the Walla Walla Valley. Drew returned to his hometown in 2007 to plant his estate vineyard, McQueen, in SeVein Vineyards of Distinction. The following year, Drew launched Doubleback, an estate-focused winery with the goal to produce ultra-premium Cabernet Sauvignon from the Walla Walla Valley. To make this dream a reality, Drew and his wife Maura, are collaborating with Drew’s childhood friend and Consulting Winemaker, Chris Figgins of Figgins Family Wine Estates, known for producing Leonetti Cellar and FIGGINS.

The first release from Doubleback, the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon, was rewarded with a spot on the 2010 Wine Spectators Top 100 List. In early 2011, Drew acquired a second estate vineyard in SeVein, named Bob Healy, after his late father-in-law to further assist the production of high-quality Walla Walla Valley fruit for Doubleback.

The Bledsoe’s vision is to create a premium wine experience completely focused around quality. They are committed to using only the best viticulture and winemaking practices to ensure that Doubleback will be one of the best bottles of wine you will drink.

Close

Chris Figgins

Chris Figgins

Chris began fine tuning his winemaking skills at a very early age by his natural immersion in the family business. Assisting his parents and founders, Gary and Nancy Figgins at Leonetti Cellar, after school and during the summers Chris learned every aspect of the wine business. After graduating from Washington State University with a degree in Horticulture – he “officially” joined Leonetti in 1996 and focused on moving Leonetti to an estate driven winery model. He became the head winemaker in 2001. Chris is known industry-wide for constantly pushing the envelope viticulturally in his vineyards. A frequent public speaker, Chris shares his love and intense passion for sustainable farming and biological soil health with other viticulturists, winemakers and diversified farmers whenever possible. Chris has been the consulting winemaker for Doubleback since its inception in 2007. In addition, Chris has several other projects under the Figgins Family Wine Estates company, namely FIGGINS and Lostine Cattle Company. Chris spends his down time with his two young girls and is outside skiing, fly fishing and hunting as much as possible.

Close

The Story

Drew Bledsoe and Chris Figgins

Chris and Drew go back many years, as they grew up a stone’s throw from each other, some 400 yards from the Leonetti Cellar Estate in Walla Walla. After high school, they both went on to pursue their own ambitions and personal successes. The two reconnected in early 2007 when Drew made the decision to enter the wine business. After much research, Drew decided on his hometown of Walla Walla as his first choice for his vineyard and winery location. Chris was certainly at the top of Drew’s list for a consulting winemaker but was unsure of Chris’ interest outside of Leonetti Cellar. The timing was very serendipitous as Chris had just started Figgins Enological and was looking for the perfect client for his first consulting collaboration. Chris, having a very high respect for Drew, seriously entertained taking on Doubleback as his client and their business relationship became official in the spring of 2007 just as Drew announced his retirement from the NFL. Chris consults on all winemaking and viticulture practices as well as assisted in the vineyard design and planting for McQueen, Drew’s estate vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley. It is a true collaboration from dirt to bottle.

Close

“I have always been intrigued by the entire production process, from vine to bottle, far more than I was about the mere acquisition and consumption of wine.” Drew Bledsoe

Drew Bledsoe & Chris Figgins
A True Collaboration

2011

I’m learning to have a love/hate relationship with these cooler vintages. 2011 was stressful! In late September we weren’t sure if we were even going to have a vintage, but thankfully a few weeks of ideal temperatures in October saved the day. Our vineyards on the southern end of the Walla Walla Valley achieved optimum ripeness. As with most things in life, it takes some adversity to create something special. Our 2011 vintage is a prime example. I tasted over the course of a week and the ’11 continued to open up each day hitting its stride about day four. The wine shows the impeccable balance we look to achieve. Tannins are present but soft, bright red fruit is balanced by crisp acidity, and the long finish leaves you wanting another glass. This is a vintage we will be proud of for years to come (and not just because it’s 11).

Drew Bledsoe

Proprietor

The coolest vintage since ’93 and a true vintage to separate the men from the boys in the vineyard. I know, #11…1993…please resist the temptation to extrapolate on the irony until I tell you this. Drew’s decision to focus his fruit sources on the Southern Walla Walla Valley, due to its warmer climate and more feminine fruit profile, paid off enormously. In a year when “generous” and “voluptuous” will apply to very few wines produced in the greater Columbia Valley, the ’11 Doubleback will be a rare exception. The color is saturated and gorgeous. The nose explodes with crushed and sautéed bramble fruit, crème brulee, and a dusting of allspice. The palate is long and sexy, with silk smooth tannin and a lovely background note of toasty French oak. The vibrant acid backbone cuts through its richness ending with a generously long finish. I believe it will be among the finest produced in 2011.

Chris Figgins

Consulting Winemaker

While my hair somehow didn’t turn grey, it should have considering the 2011 harvest had more nicknames than a rapper – amongst them: “The Summer That Wasn’t”, “Junuary”, and, thankfully, “The Miracle Vintage”. This vintage started late and we trailed normal ripeness indicators by 3-4 weeks all year long. The last two weeks of August and all of September brought warmer than normal temperatures that helped catch us up some. Still, we didn’t receive our first grape until October 4th, with the tease of some Bob Healy Merlot to warm up the crew. Then, due to an early October cool streak, we didn’t receive another block until October 15th, when we picked our first cabernet. The rest of the cabernet came in a flurry over the next 16 days. Thankfully, the end of October could not have been more perfect and dry, and with the threat of frost approaching, we completed harvest on the 1st of November with the McQueen Cabernet.

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Cellaring recommendation 5 years from vintage year or up to 15-20 years

Production

Cases Produced: 3000

Blend Profile

90% Cabernet Sauvignon
5% Merlot
4% Petit Verdot
1% Malbec

Vineyard Sources

McQueen, Walla Walla Valley
Bob Healy, Walla Walla Valley
Seven Hills, Walla Walla Valley
LeFore, Walla Walla Valley
Waliser, Walla Walla Valley

Barrel / Aging Program

Aged in 71% new French oak and 29% neutral French oak barrels for 20 months.

Retail price: $89

Purchase securely online

Download complete profile

2010 ~ SOLD OUT

The 2010 vintage may prove to be a benchmark for years to come. The long, late growing season produced deeper, darker fruit than in past vintages. In the glass, the classic ruby color we love is joined by a hint of purple. The nose exhibits the high-toned floral notes we have made a hallmark while also showing plum, maraschino cherry, vanilla and Asian spice notes. On the palate the wine exhibits the balance we continue to strive for; nicely integrated tannins, crisp acidity and beautiful Walla Walla Valley fruit. The bright red fruit is married nicely this year with some darker fruit flavors. The finish lasts and lasts. This is a wine that will reward with some bottle age but, if you must dive in, please decant for a couple of hours to allow it to really shine.

Drew Bledsoe

Proprietor

Out of the bottle, the 2010 vintage is dark as port. The nose is full of pure, blue and black fruit, hints of dust, pine needles and sweet forest floor. I tasted the bottle opened for these notes over 7 days and the fruit never left. Cassis, baking spices, notes of cedar and caramel dominated until the end. To witness a wine evolve this seamlessly while open for over a week on my counter speaks volumes to how it will evolve in your cellar. Lay this wine down for decades if you wish or enjoy it now! The acid and tannins are in perfect balance, highlighting the elegance which Drew has tasked me with extracting from the fruit.

Chris Figgins

Consulting Winemaker

2010 might be summed up as long, late, and light! The season began with an early bud break due to a teaser of an early spring. That false spring quickly hid itself giving us one of the coolest periods from bud break to bloom we can remember. Weather was cool and damp during bloom, which caused poor set of berries resulting in very light yields and gave us clusters that were very loose and open. The summer was quite normal with no heat spikes, so we never quite “caught up”. Therefore, harvest was three weeks behind normal, but thankfully we were graced with a perfect fall containing only a few scattered showers, which helped to ripen our low yields. Berries from 2010 were very small and intense in color and flavor. The wines are simply stupendous. Incredible fruit, concentration, acid... it’s all there. I only wish there were more!

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Cellaring recommendation 5 years from vintage year or up to 15-20 years

Production

Cases Produced: 2000

Blend Profile

87% Cabernet Sauvignon
13% Merlot

Vineyard Sources

McQueen, Walla Walla Valley
Loess, Walla Walla Valley
Seven Hills, Walla Walla Valley
LeFore, Walla Walla Valley
Pepper Bridge, Walla Walla Valley

Barrel / Aging Program

Aged in 67% new French oak and 33% neutral French oak barrels for 20 months.

Download complete profile

2009 ~ SOLD OUT

As with our previous vintages, the 2009 shows a beautiful deep ruby color in the glass. The nose evolves dramatically after a couple of hours. Initially there are notes of dried fruits, strawberries and a hint of saddle leather. After about 90 minutes the aromas evolve and begin to show some high toned floral notes and red fruits. The juice is round and soft on the attack with nicely integrated tannins even in its youth. The ripe red fruit is balanced nicely by crisp acidity. With the deft touch of a true master, Chris Figgins captured the essence of this fantastic vintage in the 2009 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon. Please open at least a couple of hours before enjoying to allow this wine to show its true character.

Drew Bledsoe

Proprietor

Deep, beautiful ruby color. The nose opens to a bouquet of intense floral aromatics, red and black fruits, cassis, cinnamon, and chocolate, all of which reflect the generous warmth of the 2009 growing season. On the palate, the wine is soft, rich, driven with ripe fruit and incredibly silky tannins. There is a lovely thread of acidity that runs through this wine that elevates all the other generous components, which will bring a lot of pleasure the next 10+ years!

Chris Figgins

Consulting Winemaker

The 2009 vintage began by skipping spring! We waited impatiently as winter refused to give up its grip in March and by the end of April, I decided we were at least two weeks “behind” normal. Early May however behaved like June, and the vines that had been anxious in the starting gate exploded with new growth. Bloom weather was perfect in June, and the rest of the growing season proceeded with the predictability of sunshine by day and cool nights we count on in the Walla Walla Valley. We began harvesting in mid-September, and on October 10th, the season ended the same way it began – abruptly! A record low temperature frosted all the leaves off the vines, about 3 to 4 weeks early for our first frost. The fruit was unaffected, so we rushed to pick the last remaining lots. This vintage is another spectacular one, with voluptuous tannin and dense color in beautifully fruit driven wines.

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Cellaring recommendation 5 years from vintage year or up to 15-20 years

Production

Cases Produced: 1600
Retail Price: $89

Blend Profile

76% Cabernet Sauvignon
14% Merlot
10% Petit Verdot

Vineyard Sources

Loess, Walla Walla Valley
Seven Hills, Walla Walla Valley
LeFore, Walla Walla Valley
Pepper Bridge, Walla Walla Valley

Barrel / Aging Program

Aged in 50% new French oak and 50% neutral French oak barrels for 20 months.

Download complete profile

2008 ~ SOLD OUT

The 2008 Doubleback is a deep, elegant ruby color in the glass. The beautiful nose displays cherries, wet stones, dried meats and a hint of cinnamon. This vintage is remarkably well balanced on the palate. The approach is soft with very nice acidity. Cherries, strawberries, pomegranates, are all present, mixed with hints of mocha chocolate and cloves. The finish and mouth feel are lush and velvety making you long for your next sip. We are incredibly proud of the wine and how it is drinking but patience will pay off in a big way. I recommend opening your bottle of Doubleback in advance or performing the process of double decanting.

Drew Bledsoe

Proprietor

2008 is one of my favorite vintages and the ’08 Doubleback exhibits every reason why. In the glass the wine has an inky dark color to the rim. The nose is gorgeous, leading with floral aromas, cassis and raspberry puree over chocolate, fading to coffee and a hint of pine resin in the background. On the palate, the wine delivers a fantastic purity of fruit across a plush mouth feel which is cut by incredible natural acidity. This year we added Cabernet Sauvignon from the LeFore vineyard grown in “gravels” which builds complexity and adds a savory minerality to the finish of the wine. Slightly more concentrated than the ’07 Doubleback, I believe this wine will age beautifully for 20+ years but is drinking fantastic right now.

Chris Figgins

Consulting Winemaker

Vintage 2008 turned out to be a nail-biter, but will be remembered for a long time as having produced wines of exceptional quality. The season unfolded very slowly, with bud break happening ten to fourteen days later than normal. This “lateness” persisted throughout the season, with all of our major indicator milestones of approaching harvest – vine growth, bloom, verasion, etc. – happening that same two weeks late. Late harvests, where the grapes just reach maturity, are always some of our finest. The threat can be from early frost, or early fall rain. We escaped both, resulting in wines, with floral aromatics and high tones – and the color is some of the most impressive I’ve seen. The backbone of the wine reminds me much of the 2005 vintage here in Walla Walla, with hefty but fine-grained tannins. This is a truly exciting vintage for Doubleback harvest #2!

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Cellaring recommendation 5 years from vintage year or up to 15-20 years

Production

Cases Produced: 900

Blend Profile

86% Cabernet Sauvignon
7% Merlot
7% Petit Verdot

Vineyard Sources

Seven Hills, Walla Walla Valley
Pepper Bridge, Walla Walla Valley
Figgins Estate, Walla Walla Valley
LeFore, Walla Walla Valley

Barrel / Aging Program

Aged in 60% new French oak and 40% neutral French oak barrels for 22 months.

Download complete profile

2007 ~ SOLD OUT

Our 2007 Cabernet shows a deep, elegant ruby color in the glass. The nose exhibits attractive black cherry, plum and smoky meat elements. Damp earth, cedar and lilacs all come through with a subtle hint of cracked black pepper. Flavors of blueberry syrup and strawberries are present. The mouth-feel is extremely soft on the palette and the wine is very balanced with great acidity and subtle tannins. The finish is long and silky leaving you wanting another sip. We are very excited about this wine and can’t wait to share it with our friends.

Drew Bledsoe

Proprietor

The 2007 Doubleback Cabernet Sauvignon has beautiful color saturation to the rim. The nose opens with whiffs of cinnamon, clove, and other baking spices. There are elements of cherry blossoms, floral components, ripe red and black fruit puree, with subtle notes of earthy sweet forest floor and hints of toasty oak. The palate is quite mouth-coating, almost silk like. The very fine-grained soft tannins and broad, lush mouth-feel are supported by excellent acidity. The finish is very long and persistent. I’m incredibly proud of Doubleback’s inaugural vintage; I want to thank Drew and Maura for supporting me in sourcing the finest vineyards and entrusting me to craft a wine reflective of their vision.

Chris Figgins

Consulting Winemaker

We could not have asked for a better vintage to mark the inaugural harvest of Doubleback. The weather was perfect throughout the season. August was much cooler than typical which resulted in an even ripening across varietals and vineyards, finishing with a very condensed harvest period. We were fortunate to garner the finest raw material for this exceptional vintage and to watch it marry so beautifully has been rewarding. Each vineyard contributed something unique to the overall blend: The Seven Hills Cabernet creates intense floral and red fruit components; the Pepper Bridge Cabernet brings structural backbone and black fruits, the addition of the Figgins Estate Merlot fleshes out the middle and a small amount of Lloyds Petit Verdot lifted the finish and further added mouth-feel complexity. This wine is everything that can be expected from a fine Walla Walla Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.

Chris Figgins ~ Consulting Winemaker

Cellaring recommendation 5 years from vintage year or up to 15-20 years

Production

Cases Produced: 600

Blend Profile

75.5% Cabernet Sauvignon
13.2% Merlot
11.3% Petit Verdot

Vineyard Sources

Seven Hills, Walla Walla Valley
Pepper Bridge, Walla Walla Valley
Figgins Estate, Walla Walla Valley
LeFore, Walla Walla Valley

Barrel / Aging Program

Aged in 60% new French oak and 40% neutral French oak barrels for 22 months.

Download complete profile

Bledsoe Family Wine - coming September 2014

“We believe wine is a work of art
that is only truly expressed when opened
and shared with family and friends.”

The Bledsoe Family
Available October 2014. Next Release 2012 Vintage. Signature Series logo

“I am and will continue to be intrigued by many grape varietals and wine styles and as such, this project has been aptly named the DREW BLEDSOE Signature Series.”

Drew Bledsoe ~ Proprietor, Doubleback
Launch Site
Signature Series bottle