March 2024 Cellar Selects: Seeing Red

Sip these unique red wines

Pambrun 2019 Merlot, Walla Walla Valley (panel pick)
Rich notes of black licorice immediately captivate, followed by earthy mushrooms and equally fragrant espresso and sandalwood. Blackberries, blackcap raspberries and blueberries dominate the palate in a delicious fusion of dark fruit flavors. It boasts a robust structure, with grippy, assertive tannins providing both depth and a pleasing texture. This wine is sure to leave a lasting impression. $65

The Pines 2019 Merlot, Columbia Gorge
Herbaceous aromas of green pepper combine with red cherries, sandalwood incense and red licorice for a fruit-forward profile. Despite their prominence, the tannins feel smooth and velvety, enhancing this wine’s overall elegance. Red cherries, cherry pie and raspberries add a burst of fruity sweetness, creating a harmonious balance between savory and sweet elements. $30

Jaxon Vineyards 2021 Malbec, Rogue Valley
A nose filled with the scent of gravel dust sets a mineral tone, while blueberries, blackberries and Marionberries contribute to the wine’s character. Blueberries and Marionberries take center stage, supplying a burst of juicy, ripe fruit. Cedar adds an intriguing layer of complexity, creating a harmonious blend of fruit and subtle earthy notes. Soft and gentle tannins create a supple texture while allowing the fruit flavors to shine. $30

Six Peaks 2022 Malbec, Aquilini Vineyards, Columbia Valley
Baking spices introduce a warm, comforting tone, while enticing scents of red cherries and blueberries create a fruity, lively character. Tart and tangy acidity enlivens the palate, creating a refreshing and vibrant sensation. The dynamic palate of mulberries, raspberries, and raspberry jam concludes into a memorable impression of fruity brightness. $45

King Family Wines 2019 The Soldier Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley
Blueberries, violets and blackberries are accompanied by the seductive allure of cocoa powder and mushrooms. Black cherries provide a luscious fruit charm while anise, black plums and leather notes generate a unique and exotic flavor profile. Spicy cardamom joins with earthy forest floor. Each sip promises a journey through a spectrum of flavors. $23

Stone Griffon Vineyard 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon, Walla Walla Valley
Hints of rosemary oil, green peppers and cloves add aromatic complexity when combined with black cherries, caramel and blueberries. Aleppo pepper, red currants and black plums contribute to its robust structure, creating a textured, well-defined wine. It concludes with a touch of sweetness, creating a lingering, satisfying finish that invites another taste. $45

Phelps Creek 2021 Petit Verdot, Columbia Valley
A delightful mix of mulberries, huckleberries, blueberries and cranberries creates a complex and fruity nose. A berry medley unfolds on the palate, featuring blueberries, black plums, sweet cherries, cranberries and Marionberries. Nicely integrated tannins add structure without being overwhelming. Bourbon-soaked pie cherries supply a luxurious and indulgent layer of complexity that evolves into a mouthwatering finish that lingers on the palate. $48

Six Peaks 2022 Cabernet Franc, Walla Walla Valley
Herbaceous aromas of rosemary oil, thyme and cedar furnish a touch of sophistication to floral violets and fruity blueberries. Black and sweet cherries dominate the palate, complemented by an enticing sweetness of red licorice and red plums. Cinnamon adds warmth while vanilla contributes creamy, luxurious notes. Cranberry sauce introduces a delightful tartness, complemented by the richness of maraschino cherries. These diverse flavors evolve and persist on the conclusion. $50

Pambrun 2019 Chrysologue Red Blend, Walla Walla Valley
Poblano peppers make a bold entrance, with blueberries contributing fruity freshness. Earthy undertones and a hint of bacon fat add complexity. On the palate, a dynamic interplay of mulberries, blueberries, green pepper and vanilla combine with spicy red hots, adding a kick of heat. The structured profile and grippy tannins supply depth, creating a wine that invites contemplation and appreciation. $70

47 Wines Evaluated

Wineries: Want to see your brand on this page? Submit your wines to OWP, no fee. For details, email Michele Francisco at michele@oregonwinepress.com. Requirements: Wine must be: 1) Produced by an Oregon winery (wineries from Washington side of Columbia Gorge AVA or Washington side of Walla Walla Valley AVA also allowed); 2) Currently available to consumers. Selection process: Led by a wine industry expert, the OWP tasting panel selects wines based on overall quality within their respective categories. Recommended wines are selected using a double-blind method and a 20-point ranking system for appearance, aroma, taste, balance and finish. To the best of our knowledge, they are currently available in the marketplace.

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