Today it’s a 2009 cabernet from Washington State that costs about $8. At this price, can it possibly be any good?
Yes! In fact this wine is unbelievably good, for $8. Spicy, with rich, medium-to-heavy mouthfeel. A good balance between cranberry/black cherry sweetness and rhubarb tartness, with just the right amount of oak. It’s also surprisingly interesting, maybe due to the 7% merlot and 6% syrah added by winemaker Ray Weinberger.
Overall, Columbia Crest Grand Estates cabernet performs way above its class. In a blind comparison with $12 and $16 cabs, Columbia Crest nearly tied — an extraordinary result for an $8 red. It came in 3rd because it was a little too sweet, and it has some of that generic mass-produced red wine taste. But at this low price, I’m not complaining, I’m raving.