2011 Columbia Crest "Reserve" Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1322128 91 points Wine Spectator

 Velvety, round and dense, with licorice accents to the smoky black currant and dried plum flavors, picking up floral notes as the finish pushes against a light veil of firm tannins. (HS)  (12/2014)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve is a stunner that comes from one of the more difficult vintages in the last decade. It has remarkable purity in its black and blue fruits, graphite, smoked herbs and licorice-scented aromas and flavors, and this beauty hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness, a great texture and sweet, slightly rustic tannin. Drink it anytime over the coming decade. The blend here is 95% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot that saw 26 months new French oak. (JD) 90+  (6/2015)

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Price: $16.99
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By: Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/19/2017 | Send Email
Another insane deal brought to you by an older vintage that needs to make way for the new! I was dumbfounded when David poured this blind for myself and a colleague. We were shocked to find it was Washington Cabernet, and sub $20 to boot! It is both incredibly well fruited and fresh, but loaded with savor, cigar box, and earthy tones that might fool you into thinking you had Bordeaux in your glass from a particularly ripe vintage. This is the kind of wine that we all long for. Cheap in price, but drinking like it should be twice as much. It's friendly with food, but rich enough to be the perfect cocktail wine. Leave it in the cellar for a couple of years, or drink it now. It really is that flexible. Don't miss out on an iconic producer's reserve at a steal.

By: Shaun Green | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/18/2017 | Send Email
Always a great value, but this is truly exceptional. The 2011 Columbia Crest Reserve shows a nice chocolaty layer over deep blackberry nose, followed by a mouth filling palate of bold and intense black fruits, slightly spicy smoky and minerally with a nice grip of dusty tannin. A real crowd pleasing style with a lot to offer everyone.
Top Value!

By: David Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/18/2017 | Send Email
I wish everyone could try this wine without knowing what it is because it's a shocker. Pour this blind for your friends and watch them guess: Rhone? 2009 Bordeaux? Maybe something from a cooler vintage in Barossa? NOPE! It's Columbia Crest Reserve Cabernet from Washington with just a little bit of age, rendering the wine soft and seamless without all the ripeness or coffee bean notes from the oak I usually expect. I fooled some of the K&L senior staff in the tasting bar earlier today, and I loved watching their mouths drop when I told them it was Columbia Crest. Even better, I loved watching their facial expressions when I told them it was seventeen bucks! This is Monday night meatloaf wine at its finest. It's a flossy bottle of Thursday night hamburger wine with real depth and intrigue. There's a surprising amount of polish here without any overstated sweetness or saturation. The 2011 Reserve Cabernet has developed into a balanced and surprisingly restrained little gem with ample dark fruits, but subtle notes of earth and spice that accent the finish. Forget what you think you know about big brand labels and buy a case. You won't be sorry.

By: Illya Haase | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/15/2017 | Send Email
I am always on the lookout for a good deal. If I can find a wine with some bottle age, that is even better! Columbia Crest "Reserve" is just that bottle. It provides a delightful nose of blackberry, graphite and cedar wood smoke with a super velvety texture on the tongue. The Reserve is elegantly dry and balanced mid-palate, which leads to an expressive, lingering finish, including seamlessly sublime tannins. Once again with a little time in the bottle all the flavors of the wine are in complete balance. This will be a great case buy for the holidays!

By: Mari Keilman | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/15/2017 | Send Email
Columbia Crest has always impressed me from the first time I tasted their H3 wines over 10 years ago. There are wineries that aren't even an eighth of their size that can produce wines of this quality and consistency and yet Columbia Crest manages to put out stellar wine, after stellar wine, hundreds of cases at a time. I would almost be tempted to say that in the dictionary under "overdelivers" there should be a picture of Columbia Crest...almost! But the 2011 Columbia Crest Reserve is an extremely impressive Cab! There is a beautiful purity of fruit with lots of blackberry and raspberry on the palate. Columbia Crest uses both American and French oak and its very evident on the long and persistent palate that oozes anise, cedar and vanilla on the finish. This wine is the whole package and it's impossible to believe it's at such a ridiculous price!

By: Anthony Russo | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/13/2017 | Send Email
HUGE bang for the buck. People always ask "How can I spend $(low amount) and get $(high amount)'s worth of flavors?" This is one of those wines. The nose is very fragrant, lifted and bright with plenty, but not too many, red fruits and plum. Palate has tons of depth to it, each layer showing softness and delicious flavor that indicate the wine's readiness to drink. Grab some before they're all gone!

By: Trey Beffa | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/12/2017 | Send Email
Somehow a bunch of the 2011 vintage of this Reserve Cabernet from Columbia Crest showed up in our distributor’s warehouse. Since they are currently on a newer vintage, the older vintage must go! – Hence our price. The 2011 is a ready to drink, soft, supple wine that is loaded with crème de cassis and blackberry flavors. The oak is now integrated and this lush, soft wine is just delicious right now -especially at this price!

Additional Information:


Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world.


- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5