No one could match the nine Platinums won by Clearwater Canyon Cellars, and this Carménère-led blend proved to be the top scoring by Idaho’s Coco Umiker. The Carm from Phinny Hill Vineyard in Washington’s Horse Heaven Hills makes up two-thirds of the blend, with the rest being Cabernet Sauvignon (12%), Merlot (9%), Petit Verdot (7%), Malbec (2%) and the thoughtful use of Rhône red Petite Sirah (5%). Those components bring a remarkable spectrum of aromas, led by dark red fruit, black pepper and hints of pico de gallo. The tannin management produces a silkiness and a squirt of blueberry adds to its freshness and lengthy finish.
Rating: Double Platinum, 98 points
Production: 164 cases