Columbia Winery 2012 Malbec, Columbia Valley, $32
Canadian-born winemaker Sean Hails hit the ground running in 2012 when Gallo purchased historic property in Woodinville and moved him to Washington state, and his first Malbec in the Columbia Valley is an amazing effort. Aromas of a salted caramel mocha, blueberry, pomegranate and horehound lead to flavors of dark blueberry, black currant, elderberry and smoked meat with cracked black pepper. The structure is nicely balanced with acidity staying just ahead of the tannin. This release under Columbia’s Small Lot tier is tagged as a tasting room exclusive.
Production: 840 cases