Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the world's most widely recognized red wine grape varieties. It is grown in nearly every major wine producing country among a diverse spectrum of climates from Canada's Okanagan Valley to Lebanon's Beqaa Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon became internationally recognized through its prominence in Bordeaux wines where it is often blended with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. From France, the grape spread across Europe and to the New World where it found new homes in places like California's Santa Cruz Mountains, Napa Valley, New Zealand's Hawkes Bay, Australia's Margaret River and Coonawarra regions and Chile's Maipo Valley and Colchagua. The classic profile of Cabernet Sauvignon tends to be full-bodied wines with high tannins and noticeable acidity that contributes to the wine's aging potential. In cooler climates, Cabernet Sauvignon tends to produce wines with blackcurrant notes that can be accompanied by green bell pepper notes, mint and cedar which will all become more pronounced as the wine ages. In more moderate climates the blackcurrant notes are often seen with black cherry and black olives notes while in very hot climates the current flavors can veer towards the over-ripe and "jammy" side.
- Item #: i_200170Bottle Size: 750mlGrapes were sourced from vineyards throughout Washington state, including the Horse Heaven Hills, Columbia Valley and the Wahluke Slope. Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah & Petit Verdot were added to create a fruit-forward profile and enhanced mouth feel. The wine was aged for 12 months in a combination of American and French oak barrels to build structure and complexity in the blend. This Cabernet Sauvignon is a rich, juicy red that features aromas of dark cherry, black currants, coffee, and subtle hints of spice. These flavors are complemented by a touch of spicy oak and emphasized by refined tannins.
- Item #: i_202500Bottle Size: 750mlInky red, almost black in color, this classic Cabernet Sauvignon is heavily concentrated with ripe cherry aromas and black fruit flavors, backed by vanilla oak notes. Layered with texture that belies its silky smooth tannins, this wine's perfectly balanced alcohol and bright, clean acidity make it a perfect companion for red meat and savory dishes.
- Item #: i_216270Bottle Size: 750mlJames Suckling: 93JAMES SUCKLING 93 POINTS - "A briary array of purple berries with mulberries, as well as pastry, roasting herbs and leaves. The palate has a very forthright feel with a focused mid-palate that delivers plenty of richness and power with balance. Drink or hold."
- Item #: i_264001Bottle Size: 750mlChateau Ste. Michelle crafts their Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon to highlight concentrated Washington red fruit in an accessible style.
- Item #: i_275830Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 95 PointsAllen Shoup named this wine in honor of his grandfather, Charles Chester, and his grandmother, Maggie Kidder. He has a purpose in mind; a vision really, and that is to make a wine that says, "this is how good Washington wine can be." Allen selected Gilles Nicault, former winemaker for Woodward Canyon, to bring the vision to fruition
- Item #: i_212410Bottle Size: 750ML- "Supple, focused and distinctive, with a core of ripe plum, currant, sage and floral flavors, mingling effectively and harmoniously on the long, expressive finish. Drink now through 2020."
We've long been fans of Columbia Crest, one of Washington State's premiere wineries, known for both handcrafted, superior-quality small-lot wines and affordable, everyday Washington quaffers. So where does "H3" fall? Well, the price says everyday and affordable but, we must confess, the juice in the bottle has us leaning toward the superior side of the above descriptor-- it's a fantastic Cabernet Sauvignon that we believe people will fall in love with.
- Item #: i_212450Bottle Size: 750mlThis is not a case of deja vu. If you follow our newsletter, you may recall that a Columbia Crest wine was our wine of the month last year at this time (the '09 H3 Cab, to be precise). This year, their red blend "Les Chevaux" (French for 'the horses') hit the home stretch well ahead of the dozen other worthy wines to take the purse.
Chevaux is a blend comprised of 80% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Syrah. Winemaker Juan Munoz Oca was raised in Mendoza, Argentina and worked with his grandfather, cellar master at Bodegas Toso winery, at a young age. Juan joined Columbia Crest in 2003 and was named head winemaker in 2011. Prior to 2011 he was dedicated to the winery's red wine program where he worked alongside Ray Einberger whose 2005 Reserve Cab became the first Washington wine to be named 'Wine of the Year' by Wine Spectator in 2009. Why Columbia Crest? Oca states: "The perfect grape-growing climate, the best viticultural practices, and a people committed to crafting the best bottle of wine vintage after vintage is what Columbia Crest's winemaking is all about."
The nose starts with Christmas spices, vanilla and cardamom, then adds a layer of cherry/plum/pomegranate reduction; a very attractive, inviting nose. The palate leads off with sweet cherry fruit and forward tannins as baking spices, Kriek lambic flavors and dark cocoa notes add depth and balance. The finish is lengthy and tasty as the big tannins slowly recede, leaving reverberations of red fruits, spice and a mineral earthiness to meander around the mouth for a few minutes more.
- "Supple and spicy, with a plush-textured, dark-hued, blackberry-rich mouthful lingering against creamy oak notes on the long and polished finish. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. Drink now through 2018."
- Item #: i_216440Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 90ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 90 POINTS - "The keenly priced 2015 Horse Heaven Hills Cabernet Sauvignon burst from the glass with a dramatic bouquet of ripe cherries, sweet berry liqueur and loamy soil. On the palate, it's medium-bodied and generous, with an ample core of ripe fruit, good balancing acids and ripe but youthfully chewy tannins. Open-knit and built for near-term consumption (it's bottled under Diam 10), it's a demonstrative Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend which seems sure to be a commercial hit."
We’re telling you right now, this wine is an absolute steal! When our buyer first tasted this (and before he heard the price), he thought he was tasting a wine that would retail for $10-20 more than this actually does!
Established in 2007, Double Canyon Vineyard resides in the heart of the award-winning Horse Heaven Hills. This appellation is a historic source for many wineries, but Double Canyon is one of few estate wineries actually located in this corner of Washington State. Named for two ravines that run through the property, Double Canyon produces estate-grown wine that expresses the individuality of this distinctive windswept, desert appellation.
2015 is another fantastic vintage in Washington State, and Double Canyon’s Horse Heaven Hill Cabernet Sauvignon showcases the ripe, luscious, and full-flavored characteristics of this vintage with aromas of violet, tea, fresh cherry, and hints of Turkish delight. The entry possesses good acidity, with the influence of French oak transforming blackberry into sweet Kirsch, plum, and hints of savory herbs that mingle and emerge to give the palate complex layers, leading into a long, juicy finish with lingering notes of mouthwatering red plum. The tannins on the finish have just enough of that velvety feel to enjoy this wine today!
- Item #: i_216410Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 90ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 90 POINTS - "Another outstanding wine is the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley, which is 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot and 5% Merlot. It's a classic Cabernet with its tobacco leaf, leafy herbs, graphite and dark fruit aromas and flavors. Medium to full-bodied, nicely textured and fresh, with moderate depth and density, it has tons of charm and is ideal for drinking over the coming 3-5 years."
- Item #: i_275887Bottle Size: 750mlLong Shadows Vintners is a collection of seven ultra-premium Columbia Valley wines showcasing the viticultural excellence of the growing region and honoring the internationally acclaimed winemakers who inspired them.
Founded in 2003 by Washington State wine visionary Allen Shoup, the Long Shadows proposition was as simple as it was complex: recruit a cadre of the finest winemakers in the world; give each vintner access to Washington State's best grapes; and outfit a winery to accommodate a diverse group of winemakers' exacting cellar specifications. The idea quickly sold itself, and from the beginning, the wines have enjoyed critical acclaim that has continued to grow vintage after vintage with the style of each wine firmly in place. In addition to the wines, Long Shadows collectively has won numerous awards, including recognition as Food & Wine magazine's "Winery of the Year." This is the 2016 Vintage of Feather Cabernet Sauvignon made by Rock star winemaker named Randy Dunn.
Randy Dunn has been creating world-class wines for over 3 decades. The Cabernets he produces from Napa's Howell Mountain and valley floor routinely garner scores in the mid to upper 90s by both Wine Spectator and Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate. Everything Randy makes including Feather is small production, hand crafted wines that are delicious now, but will also stand the test of time. In fact, Randy's wines from the early 1980s and 1990s are still going strong; some even have decades of life left! These wines are a staple in the cellar of any collector or wine aficionado, so jump on them while you can!
- Item #: i_237270Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 91 PointsANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 91+ POINTS - "(3.74 pH with a firm 6.6 grams per liter total acidity): Bright, full medium ruby. Brooding, slightly inky blackberry and cassis aromas. Rich, plush and sweet, with terrific dark berry ripeness complicated by classic claret-like herb and tobacco nuances. The most graceful of these 2015 reds to this point but also boasts terrific depth. The team eliminated the Rocks component of this wine in 2015, as they found it too stewy. Finishes sappy, chewy and very long, with firm acidity and big, palate-staining tannins."
JEB DUNNUCK 91 POINTS - "A small step up in quality over the Columbia Valley release, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Walla Walla Valley (22 months in 40% new French oak) offers more purity and elegance as well as terrific notes of blackcurrants, tobacco leaf, damp earth, and chocolate. This medium to full-bodied, elegant, silky beauty has sweet tannin, integrated acidity, and a great finish. It's outstanding stuff."
- Item #: i_236430Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Jeb Dunnuck: 94 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 94 POINTS - "The 2015 Apogee Pepper Bridge Vineyard has the most Cabernet Sauvignon of the three top releases and is 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 10% Malbec, and 5% Cab Franc. Aged 22 months in 40% new oak, it offers loads of blackcurrants, scorched earth, chocolate, and graphite aromatics, full-bodied richness, a silky, layered texture, and beautiful purity of fruit. It's a big, rich, yet impeccably balanced red."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "Offering up notes of black cherries, cassis, pencil lead and loamy soil, the 2015 Apogee Pepper Bridge Vineyard is medium to full-bodied, supple and concentrated, balanced by juicy acids. While it's also somewhat firm and chewy on the finish, it's comparatively open-knit and giving, and I'm more confident that it will reward a few years' patience with an outstanding showing. This site in the Walla Walla has a good track record for producing age-worthy but giving wines."
- Item #: i_247940Bottle Size: 750mlWine Spectator: 90Nine Hats was a conception that began back in 2007 with one wine-- a red blend that was striking in quality, approachability and deliciousness. It was crafted with impeccable attention to detail and the benefit of topquality grapes...and people loved it! The wines formed into this original blend were declassified juice coming from Long Shadows wine portfolio, a collection of seven ultrapremium Columbia Valley wines showcasing the viticultural excellence of the growing region. Along with some of the best grapes grown within the region, Long Shadows has tapped some of the best winemakers from around the world (Gilles Nicault, Randy Dunn, John Duval, Michel Rolland and Philippe Melka), so there is no wonder as to why Nine Hats was so successful. For this 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, several vineyard sites throughout Horse Heaven Hills and the Wahluke Slope were selected to source the fruit that provides its depth and complexity. Aged eleven months in French oak prior to bottling, this wine scored 90 points from Wine Spectator! Vibrant aromatics of black cherry, espresso beans and bittersweet chocolate introduce this richly structured Cabernet Sauvignon. It is a multi-layered wine with expressive flavors of black and red berries complemented by notes of savory spice. Its luscious mouthfeel persists across a lengthy finish.
WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS - "Vibrant and generous, with supple black cherry, caramel and spice flavors that glide toward polished tannins. Drink now through 2024."
- Item #: i_251390Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 97 PointsFounded in 2003 by Washington State wine visionary Allen Shoup, the mindset behind the Long Shadows winery is quite simple; obtain the best grapes and get them into the hands of the best winemakers. However, easier said than done. Each of the Long Shadows wines have a different label, a different name, and a different winemaker. To make the best Merlot in Washington State, Allen Shoup employed the master of Merlot (Michel Rolland) and developed the Pedestal label. To get the best Cabernet Sauvignon, he brought on Randy Dunn and created the Feather Cabernet. And to make the best Washington State equal to Opus One or Joseph Phelps Insignia, he got Philippe Melka to create Pirouette, a Cabernet Sauvignon-driven blend!
Philippe Melka is a master of Cabernet Sauvignon and blends, and has crafted several wines that have earned 100 points from Robert Parker's Wine Advocate. He has been trained and influenced by some of the most notable personalities in the wine world, including Jean Delmas and Jean Philippe Masclef from Haut-Brion, Christian Moueix and Jean Claude Berrouet from Petrus, Paul Draper from Ridge, Daniel Baron from Silver Oak. For Pirouette, a variety of fermentation methods were used to enhance complexity and richness in this classic Bordeaux blend. Hand-harvested Cabernet was fermented in 400L French oak barrels that were gently rolled throughout fermentation to integrate the oak with refined, dark fruit flavors and give the wine its silky mouthfeel. All other varieties were fermented in traditional stainless steel tanks, with select lots enjoying longer skin contact to enhance the wine's dark color and mid-palate. The finished wine was aged 22 months in French oak barrels (75% new) before bottling unfiltered and unfined.
JEB DUNNUCK 97 POINTS - "The talented Gilles Nicault continues to manage this estate and all its different cuvées brilliantly. The key factor to understand with these wines is that each is made with consulting advice from a different winemaker. Hence, the style of each is unique, yet the quality is top notch."
"The 2016 Pirouette is made by Philippe Melka and it's a total blockbuster based on 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, and the palate Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc, and Malbec that was fermented in barrel and aged 22 months in 75% new oak. Creme de cassis, blackberries, toasted spices, cedar, and forest floor notes all emerge from this deep, rich, opulent red that has sweet tannins, a thrilling texture, no hard edges, and a monster finish. This is another best-to-date from this estate and it's an awesome wine."
- Item #: i_252490Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 99 PointsQuilceda Creek has received more 100-point scores from Robert Parker's Wine Advocate than any other winery in Washington. Paul Golitzin is winemaker and son of founders Alex and Jeannette Golitzin. He learned his masterful touch with Bordeaux varietals from not only his father, but also his great uncle Andre Tchelistcheff (Cabernet Sauvignon would not be ANYWHERE near its current success without Andre's work in the Napa Valley); however, Paul has developed his own style, and worked with the amazing fruit from the area. Many of the vineyards are located in the Horse Heaven Hills area, and the silt/ loam soils produce grapes with intense flavors yet refined personalities.
JEB DUNNUCK 99 POINTS - "The flagship is the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, 100% Cabernet Sauvignon mostly from Champoux with the balance from Palengat and Wallula vineyards. Creme de cassis, graphite, black licorice, unsmoked tobacco, and hints of chocolate and emerge from this beauty and it continues to gain depth and nuance with time in the glass. Full-bodied, deep, and layered with an incredible purity and elegance on the palate, it's already accessible but has more than enough tannin, depth, and balance to evolve for two decades or more."
- Item #: i_252440Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 98 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 98+ POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Colombia Valley is a beautiful wine and has a more classic profile than the more sexy, massive 2015. Beautiful notes of creme de cassis, lead pencil shavings, graphite, dried herbs, and loamy earth all flow to a full-bodied, incredibly pure and perfectly balanced Cabernet Sauvignon that has no hard edges, a deep, concentrated mid-palate, good acidity, and a great, great finish. It reminds me of the 2002 with its uber classic, balanced yet broad and powerful style."
- Item #: i_253300Bottle Size: 750mlA Washington State Cabernet that overdelivers for its pricepoint! Comprised of fruit from some of the most sought-after vineyards in the state, including Champoux, Wallula, Loess, and Sevein>
- Item #: i_275290Bottle Size: 750mlWine Spectator: 91Vinous Media: 91ANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 92 POINTS - "(aged for 23 months in 50% new oak; McClellan told me he watered back the 2015s "for the sake of balance"): Bright red-ruby. Explosive ripe scents of black raspberry, cassis, licorice, cocoa powder, menthol and tobacco leaf. Bright, sweet and strong, with an almost grapey immediacy to its sweet boysenberry and glossy oak flavors. Still quite primary, this rather powerful Cabernet boasts excellent definition and lift and finishes with a serious dusting of tannins. (14.9% alcohol)"
WINE SPECTATOR 91 POINTS - "Tightly structured and focused, with currant, stony mineral and tobacco flavors that build toward firm but refined tannins. Best from 2021 through 2025. 1,210 cases made."
- Item #: i_264030Bottle Size: 750mlThe Indian Wells Cabernet is Ste Michelle's warm climate ripe, jammy "New World" style of Cabernet Sauvignon. The wine offers dark fruit aromas and flavors. Syrah added an enhanced richness and concentration to the wine.