As I have written in the past in this blog, I am on a quest to locate wines locally that are rated at 90 points or higher and sell for $20.00 or less a bottle for all of us to try. For this week’s post I found the 2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley. I purchased this wine from Chalet Party Shoppe on County Road 17 here in Elkhart.
Chateau Ste. Michelle winery is the oldest winery and one of the most well-known wineries in the state of Washington. The winery is known for producing a wide range of wines such as Cabernets, Merlots, Chardonnay and Syrah, to name a few. However, its claim to fame comes from its production of high quality Rieslings. According to a number of reports, a joint venture between Chateau Ste. Michelle and famed Mosel (German) producer Ernst Loosen has helped spark a Riesling revival in the United States and has solidified Washington’s Columbia Valley as the country’s premier Riesling region. It is said that the Columbia Valley Riesling is the number one selling Riesling in the U.S.
The original winery (today’s Chateau Ste. Michelle) was built on a lumber estate in 1912. Then, in 1954, two of the oldest Washington state wineries merged: the National Wine Company and the Pomerelle Wine Company. In 1967 the company began producing wines under the Chateau Ste. Michelle label. The first wines produced were Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Sémillon and Grenache. If you haven’t yet tried Sémillon or Grenache wines you should do so. They are among my favorites.
For more information on Chateau Ste. Michelle you can visit their website. They produce a number of wines, some of which may be of interest. Their 2016 Cabernets are receiving a number of 90-point-plus ratings by various wine critics.
2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley: My Review
The 2013 Cabernet is a very high-producing wine with 326,000 cases made. This wine will not have a long shelf life. You will want to drink it within 24 to 36 months.
The wine is a blended Cabernet made up of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Syrah, 5% Merlot and 4% of other red varieties.
The color of the wine was the typical Cabernet color: dark ruby red. The nose of the wine was muted and stubborn. After 15 to 20 minutes in the glass it did open and produce a small amount of berry fruit aromas.
On the palate the wine was medium-bodied and favorable. This wine was smooth, but not overly powerful. It was balanced and produced hints of berry flavors that were prevalent in the nose.
The finish is dry and its flavors and mild tannins are subdued. This is a friendly Cabernet and was fun to drink. It will pair well with most red meats and pasta.
Wine Scores and Pricing
The wine received critic reviews and scores as follows:
Wine Enthusiast 90/100
Wine Spectator 90/100
The wine sells nationally from $10.89 to $15.89 per bottle (plus tax). I purchased the 2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet at Chalet for $14.99, plus tax. As I recall Chalet provides a discount on larger bottle purchases, which would lower your cost even more. This wine would be a safe purchase for stocking stuffers or gifts during the holidays. If you drink red wine you’ll not go wrong with this one.
As always I appreciate your support of our wine blog and encourage you to share it with family and friends. If you are reading this blog for the first time please consider subscribing while you are on the website. This way you’ll get our reviews and articles in your email. If you care to share your comments on this blog posting or other topics please do so in the comments section below.
Until next week,