Daven Lore Winery 2012 Aridisol Red, Columbia Valley, $29

Along the northern flank of the Horse Heaven Hills is Gordon Taylor’s Daven Lore Winery, one of Washington’s most skilled boutique winemakers. He used an anagram of arid soil to create the proprietary name for his eclectic blend of Syrah (40%), Grenache (20%), Petit Verdot (20%) and Malbec (20%) from…

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Avennia 2013 Gravura, Columbia Valley, $35

Chris Peterson and Marty Taucher in Woodinville continue to excel with their Right Bank blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (47%), Merlot (44%) and Cabernet Franc from historic sources such as Bacchus, Dionysus, Boushey, Klipsun and Red Willow. The expressive nose of 50% new French oak broadcasts hints of Bing cherry and…

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Skyfall Vineyard 2014 Red Blend, Columbia Valley, $14

Best Buy! Seattle-based Precept Wine continues to grow its Skyfall Vineyard project overlooking the Yakima River near Red Mountain, and the early releases mean solid returns for consumers. The Red Blend gathers up Merlot (48%), Cabernet Sauvignon (23%), Syrah (16%), Cabernet Franc (8%) and Sangiovese to create a nose of…

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Tamarack Cellars 2015 Rosé of Mourvèdre, Wahluke Slope, $15

Best Buy! The popularity of Northwest-made rosé continues to rise, and Tamarack Cellars offers yet another example of why. Danny Gordon continues to source this from history Weinbau Vineyard on the Wahluke Slope, and it’s quite a serious offering. The  peach color leads to generous aromas of dried strawberry, light…

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Cloudlift Cellars 2013 Halcyon Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $30

The flagship wine for this young winery in Seattle’s Sodo district is a blend of Sagemoor Vineyards’ Bacchus Block 10 Cab – one of the state’s oldest plantings – rising star Elephant Mountain in Rattlesnake Hills and Alder Ridge in the dusty Horse Heaven Hills. The custom furniture craftsman select…

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Cathedral Ridge Winery 2014 Bolton Vineyard Reserve Barbera, Columbia Valley, $48

Columbia Gorge vintner Robb Bell continues his string of success with this Italian red as his latest vintage seems on par with 2012 and 2013 bottlings that earned gold medals at competitions along the West Coast. The brooding nose of dark plum, black figs and macerated cherry includes a touch…

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Wind Rose Cellars 2015 Rosato, Yakima Valley, $15

Best Buy! Graduates of the Yakima Valley Community College wine program include Olympic Peninsula vintner David Volmut, and his Italian-themed rosé focuses on fruit from Lonesome Spring Ranch. The sensible blend of Dolcetto (59%) and Sangiovese offers an alluring strawberry/rhubarb color with aromas to match, including Rainier cherry, nectarine and…

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Tamarack Cellars 2013 Ciel du Cheval Nebbiolo, Red Mountain, $45

There’s a growing contingent of Pacific Northwest wine experts who view Jim Holmes’ Ciel du Cheval Vineyard on Red Mountain as a Grand Cru-type site in our region for the decades of work with Bordeaux varieties. The winemaking tandem of Ron Coleman and Danny Gordon at Tamarack in Walla Walla…

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Aubichon Cellars 2015 Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley, $25

In the past, Jim Sanders worked with fruit from the Dundee Hills for the Pinot Gris under this brand. Here, he’s reached into a rocky parcel in the Chehalem Mountains for his expression that’s an excellent example of the style more Oregon winemakers are achieving. Aromas lead with honeydew melon,…

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Browne Family Vineyards 2013 Petit Verdot, Columbia Valley, $35

For the second straight vintage, veteran Walla Walla winemaker John Freeman has earned our top rating for the stately Petit Verdot bottled under the name of his boss – Precept Wine CEO Andrew Browne. The work, once again, starts at Canyon Vineyard Ranch  near Prosser, Wash., followed by 22 months…

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