Quick Swirl: Columbia Crest Grand Estates Merlot 2001 (PB)
This Washington State varietal is lighter on the pour than I would have imagined. The bouquet is fruity and the nose rich, even meaty. In the mouth it is medium bodied with robust tannins and a foundation of mixed berry flavors trying to break out. I think some “air time” will help this wine open up.
Half hour later a large presence of currants and raspberries climb on top with a nice silky texture. There is even some spice that tops it off for a provocative finish. This wine was #52 of the Wine Spectator’s top 100 with a score of 90. It is a bargain value at $11.00 but for me to score a wine that breaks out of the 80's, it has to be something special. This is a very nice wine, but it’s “just” a very nice wine; nothing extraordinary. I would give it an 88 maybe even an 89.
Columbia Crest is really producing some high quality wines at a bargain price. This is a winery to watch and take advantage of. We had friends over for a dinner of homemade ravioli’s and asparagus broiled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The wine was a nice match. Now raise a glass.