Columbia Crest Winery is based in the town of Paterson, Washington, located on the northern banks of the Columbia River in the Columbia Valley. The winery produces a number of red and white wines using many different varietals.
The 2009 Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon was a blend, comprised of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc. The wine was aged in French oak barrels (40% new, 60% old) for 18 months. The listed ABV was 14.5%. The H3 stands for Horse Heaven Hills, vineyards utilized by Columbia Crest since 1983.
I first tasted the H3 at the Wine Spectator Grand Tour in NYC, where I met Juan Muñoz Oca, Columbia Crest’s head winemaker. The Grand Tour was packed with over 200 wineries and I wanted to revisit the H3 when I could give it my undivided attention. I was lucky enough to have sampled the 2007 Columbia Crest Reserve before I obtained some H3.
I purchased two bottles of the 2009 H3 and tasted them on separate evenings over the course of one week. My notes were consistent on both occasions.
Columbia Crest Winery is based in the town of Paterson, Washington, located on the northern banks of the Columbia River in the Columbia Valley. The winery produces a wide variety of red and white wines using a multitude of different varietals.
The 2007 Columbia Crest Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve was 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Merlot, and 0.2% Cabernet Franc. The wine was aged for 25 months in new oak barrels (82% French / 18% American). The wine’s ABV was 14.4%.
Juan Muñoz Oca
On the 2nd of May, 2012, I had the good fortune to attend the Wine Spectator Grand Tour in New York City. At this event, over 200 wineries from around the world gathered to pour their wines for 3 hours.
At the Grand Tour, I had the pleasure to meet Juan Muñoz Oca, the head winemaker at Columbia Crest Winery. That evening, Juan was pouring his 2009 H3 Cabernet Sauvignon (it was quite good). I made a note to keep an eye out for the H3 Cab, or anything else from Columbia Crest.
One week later, while dining at Salt Creek Grille in Rumson, NJ, I happened to see not only the H3 on the wine list, but the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve.
I decided to give the Reserve a taste.