Nine Hats refers to the nine principals at this star-studded lineup in Walla Walla, and director of winemaking Gilles Nicault turns portions of the declassified lots into one of the Pacific Northwest’s best examples of what values often can be found in second labels. His blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (55%), Merlot (21%), Syrah (6%), Petit Verdot (6%), Malbec (6%) and Carménère hails from two vineyards near the Columbia River — Weinbau on the Wahluke Slope and The Benches in the Horse Heaven Hills. It’s a big and jammy wine with a rich entry of dark cherry, ripe plum, dark chocolate and black licorice leads to a finish of boysenberry and spice. Judges at the 2015 Walla Walla Valley Wine Competition all agreed to awarded it a gold medal, so it received a double gold.
Production: 3,178 cases