Founded in 1983 by Jean and Baker Ferguson, L’Ecole No. 41 was the third winery to open in Walla Walla Valley, Washington. Today it is owned and operated by their daughter and son-in-law, Megan and Martin Clubb. The estate fruit is grown at the acclaimed Seven Hills Vineyard which is coowned with Leonetti Cellar and Pepper Bridge Winery. The remaining fruit is sourced from highly regarded Columbia Valley vineyards such as Klipsun, Bacchus, Dionysus, Milbrandt, Portteus, Fair Acre Farms, Wahluke Slope Vineyards and Willard Farms. Many of these vineyards were planted in the 1970’s or early 1980’s and all of the Walla Walla Valley vineyards are certified sustainable and Salmon Safe. The Semillon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon are all barrel aged. In the fall of 2003, L’Ecole completed the construction of a new concrete tilt barrel storage facility that accommodates the current inventory of over 2,000 French and American oak barrels. For 11 consecutive years, Wine & Spirits Magazine has named L’Ecole No. 41 as Winery of the Year, and was inducted in their Hall of Fame.
|Perigee presents quintessential Seven Hills notes of cedar, black cherry and dark spice. Perfumed aromas of blueberry and silky plum fruit are accented with earthy, graphite minerality. The velvety, chalky finish features elegantly structured tannins and balanced acidity.
| Wine Advocate 93 points (Jun 2013)
One of the estate-s single vineyard releases that focuses on the Seven Hills Vineyard that-s located in the southwestern part of the Walla Walla Valley, the 2010 Perigee Estate Seven Hills Vineyard is comprised of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 10% Malbec and 5% Petit Verdot. Spending 22 months in 50% new French oak, it-s a knockout effort that has full-bodied richness and depth as well as beautifully complex aromas and flavors of black cherries, raspberry, spice box, underbrush and toast. Concentrated, layered and with plenty of ripe tannin, it needs 2-3 years of bottle age and will drink beautifully through 2025. Drink 2016-2025.
Wine Enthusiast 94 points (Sep 2013)
A five-grape Bordeaux-style blend from the estate vineyard, this has lovely aromatics, as well as firm yet supple tannins. The black fruits are dotted with details of licorice, black tea and coffee. It’s smooth and balanced through the lengthy finish, and continues to improve overnight, suggesting it also has serious aging potential. - Cellar Selection
Wine Spectator 92 points (Jul 24 2013)
Rich and expressive, this offers a dense, multilayered mouthful of tarry blackberry, roasted fig, licorice and spice flavors that persist. Fine-grained tannins wrap the finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. Best from 2015 through 2020.—H.S.
|Wine maker notes
|First planted: 1981
900 – 1,185 feet
Aspect: Northwest slope
Soil: Wind blown
glacial loess, geologically
young and rich in minerals.
8 – 9 inches
Temp: Slightly warmer site
with harvest starting as
many as 10 days earlier than
other valley vineyard sites
Wind: High, predominantly
to plant stress
|(60% Cabernet Sauvignon/15% Merlot/10% Cabernet Franc/10% Malbec/5% Petit Verdot). The flagship cuvee of L’Ecole No. 41, the grapes were hand-picked from the oldest and most distinguished estate blocks. The fruit was gently crushed into 1.5 and 5 ton open-topped stainless steel fermentors, manually punched down and moved from one vessel to another using gravity. Racked to small French oak barrels (50% new), the wine aged for 22 months and was racked five times.
|Seven Hills Vineyard, planted
in the wind-blown glacial loess of geologically young,
mineral rich soils, is one of the Walla Walla Valley’s
most acclaimed vineyards.
With the expansion of the vineyard in the 1990’s,
L’Ecole No 41 became a vineyard partner with
Leonetti Cellar and Pepper Bridge Winery. In June
2004 Wine & Spirits Magazine named it "One of
Ten Great Vineyards in the World.”
The unique features of Seven Hills Vineyard contribute significantly to the vineyard’s
characteristic rich elegance, earthy structure,
seductive aromas and complex, silky finish.
As our Estate vineyard, producing more
than a third of our total production, we felt it
only fitting to hand-select our oldest and most
distinguished blocks to produce Perigee, a wine
as exceptional as the vineyard.