Columbia Crest H3 2013 Merlot, Horse Heaven Hills, Columbia Crest
The Horse Heaven Hills AVA is a unique area in the Columbia Valley. The high altitude vineyards on south-facing slopes benefit from strong winds that arrive from the west via the Columbia Gorge. Merlot grows well here taking on complexity and strength that's hard to find in California. Several of Washington's cult wines are from the H3 and these are wines that get top scores, even 100 points. It's also home to Columbia Crest winery where they focus on making wines that show off this exceptional terrior. This Merlot is one of the best values from the entire region. A blend of 96% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Sauvignon. They age it in 1/3 new American and French oak for 18 months. Beverage Dynamics scored this wine 93 points saying "Outstanding wine and value. Rich with ripe red raspberry and dark chocolate. Long intense finish. An elegant mouthfeel full of luscious flavors that keep on evolving."