Even though the grape is the same, the style of Cabernet Sauvignon can vary tremendously from region to region. The stark differences between Bordeaux and California Cabs are fairly apparent, especially with them being about a third of the world apart. But even the distance along the West Coast between California and Washington brings out fairly noticeable differences, and people can have varying opinions on which is better. The Washington Cabs tend to be plumper, juicier and more darkly fruited than those from say Napa Valley or Sonoma County, perhaps less structured and capable of elegance as they age, also a bit chewier on the tannins. What you do find plenty of in Washington is value, and if you like their style then you get a looooot of enjoyment for your money. The Matthews Estate pulls fruit from some of the best sites in the Columbia Valley, like the Red Mountain and Royal Slope AVAs, and creates a wide range of vineyard specific wines, while their Columbia Valley designated wines deliver a broader snapshot of the region. This is quintessential Washington Cab, and you would be hard pressed to find any from California that deliver as much character for the money. Dark in color and pouring out loads of deep plummy fruit on the nose with plenty of currants and dusty cocoa notes that get spicier as the wine opens. Youthful and inky on the palate, and the plum and cocoa notes really persist, but the tannins are well tamed and finish with more of a bitter chocolate note than being astringent. Great with a big meal, but also as a slow sipper in front of a Winter fire.
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The Best of the Best.
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