The aromas of cedar, fresh dark berries, thyme, garden herbs and flowers provide instant appeal, with woodsy accents following. Lively plum and raspberry flavors back them up, with fine-grained tannins and barrel accents speckled throughout. (SS)
(bottled three weeks before my visit in June): Healthy red-ruby. Pure, expressive aromas of plum, currant, menthol and cigar box. Lusher and more savory than the Merlot but not as suave or consistently ripe as the Petit Verdot, showing a note of chocolatey sweetness to go with its dark berry and spice flavors. A subtle herbal element adds lift on the back end, with the tannins spreading out horizontally to dust the palate. McClellan also opened a bottle of his 1989 Cabernet and it was seriously saline and intriguing, showing dried mushroom and soy notes and a firmly tannic finish. Perhaps I am underestimating the aging potential of the 2013. (ST)
Fresh and lively, aromatically pure, with currant and plum notes glowing against crisp tannins, lingering easily on the midweight finish. (HS, Web-2016)
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2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle "Cold Creek Vineyard" Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $30)