I went on an exhaustive search a couple years ago when this wine was awarded No. 1 Wine in the World for 2009 by Wine Spectator.
I located and secured the last 8 bottles in the state of Pennsylvania and kept 4 for myself (initial post here) and shared the others with some friends. While it was hard, we let this one lay down for a couple years in hopes that we’d enjoy it with a hint of “age” on it.
I’ve found that we’re generally happy with the way Washington and California wines are drinking when they are bottled rather than after they have been “laid down” for a few years. So, maybe that means I’m not the extreme oenophile or just that I like a less restrained wine than those that are completely rested.
Either way, this Columbia Crest Reserve Cab stood up nicely to its hibernation in my wine frig. If I had to give it one flavor combination, I’d go with one of my favorite sodas: Cherry Cola. This wine was just phenomenal. I’d like to start buying a few of each vintage to see how they stand up and how they change year to year. This is a great value for the quality delivered and extremely consistent.
To those who know me, they’re not surprised to hear that I’m a big fan of Columbia Crest Reserve wines. This 2006 Syrah is not only a real value at an average cost of ~$17, but it also exhibits some restraint and balance which is hard to find at this price point. To me, this has the boldness that you’d expect from Syrah with its black pepper notes, but I found a caramel-like mid palate that I didn’t expect. It also has a muted jammy-ness which helps it stand up to a variety of foods (in tonight’s case – a dry rubbed pork loin chop – let me know if you want the dry rub recipe). I don’t think the vintage will matter much with this wine, so if you see it, grab a bottle and let me know what you think. Cheers.
As many know, the Columbia Crest Reserve Cab 2005 is an easy wine to compliment as it was rewarded in 2009 as the Wine Spectator Wine of the Year. When WS first reviewed the ’05 cab sauv, before the top wines issue, I called the PA LCB to request their assistance in locating it. They were (actually) helpful and located the last 7 bottles in the state and moved them to my local store. I took 3 and 2 friends (you know who you are – lucky!) took the others. Mind you, this wine retail price was <$30 and is now at auction for more than $90.
Now on to the wine, this is a phenomenal cab and not just because Wine Spectator said so. It’s got gobs of fruit up front which is stabilized through your palate as you drink it; oak barrel aging does some amazing things like impart the flavors of cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla, and cassis into this enjoyable vino. Lucky for us, we still have one left…