Monday, March 14, 2011

Columbia Crest H3 Les Chevaux Red Wine, 2008

We have been big fans of Columbia Crest wines for many years. I can't think of another American winery that can produce such a tremendous quantity of wine and produce an excellent product at every price point. They have wines starting at about $6 and wines priced above $40. The Columbia Crest 2005 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, was selected as “Wine of the Year”(for 2009) by the Wine Spectator Magazine. The Columbia Crest “H3” wines are upper-mid level wines that sell for about $12 to $14 in the Seattle area. The name “H3” stands for Horse Heaven Hills which is the appellation of this wine and the home of the Columbia Crest Winery in Patterson, Washington. The H3 Les Chevaux is a blend of 34% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Syrah, 8% Cabernet Franc and 8% Malbec. "Les Chevaux" is French for "the horses" - a reference to the wild horses that once roamed this region. In the glass there is a deep ruby/purple color and lovely aromas of dark berries, crème de cassis, minerals and some spicy oak. This red blend is both bold and elegant with zesty ripe blackberry cherry, currant, and blueberry balanced by espresso, licorice, flint and spice flavors. The medium bodied frame supports smooth tannins on a long, creamy finish. This is a delicious “new world “ blend that is a great value from the Horse Heavens Hills AVA. This wine can be found at Pete's Wine Shop, in Bellevue, for about $13.