So tonight I've decided to enjoy a lovely Cabernet from the Columbia Valley in Washington produced by a long-time Walla Walla winery, Three Rivers Winery! Now Three Rivers is an interesting producer, as I recall from my first trip to Walla Walla stopping by their winery just east of Woodward Canyon and L'Ecole No. 41 on U.S. 12. It was a beautiful new tasting room, in a gorgeous setting complete with putting green and patio to enjoy their wines and a view of the Blue Mountains. Alas, today there is a new U.S. 12, and Three Rivers is a little off the beaten track, but still well worth the side trip as they produce some very nice wines at great values, like tonight's selection, the 2008 Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon!
The wine is a classic Columbia Valley offering, with deep purple color in the glass easing to bright ruby along the edges. The nose is a pleasant combination or rich ripe fruit, blackberries, black cherry, cassis and plum, overlaid with a big of oak, baking spice and cocoa powder. The taste has great fruit up front, with ripe berries and plum that transitions to some tart cherry and earthy minerality midpalate. The tannins are very nicely structured, providing the backbone for the exceptionally long and bone dry finish. It's the kind of wine you'd like to sip and enjoy all afternoon, especially an afternoon like today, the first day of fall!
Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 8, it's not an exceptional Cabernet, but it's a very nice example at a great price. I bought this from Wineshopper.com for only $14, so it's perfect as an everyday Cab! Tonight I am enjoying this wine with a lovely last of summer feast of grilled Bourbon Teriyaki glazed pork tenderloin with mashed purple potatoes and grilled corn on the cob. The strength of this Cab just pairs so nicely with the grilled smokiness of the tenderloin, but it would do just as nicely with a steak or spicy marinara. So goodbye summer and hello autumn!