Red wines I like, Independence Day, 2017

Eastern Washington has some great red wines and the Walla Walla area in particular has some outstanding values. I tend to favor Eastern WA over other regions, but I buy from all over. My strategy is to drink a mix of $8.00-$25.00 price points and types. Overall I like robust, smooth wines and am not a fan of dry wines, spicy wines or Pinot Noirs. Prices are from the Total Wine website on 6/11/2017.

top ten red wines summer 2017

My top ten red wines, Summer 2017
  1. Charles & Charles Red Blend. 2015. Washington State. $8.99 (or $8.09 with a 10% volume discount), are you kidding me? This blend of 70% Cabernet Sauv. and 30% Syrah is perfect for sipping on the porch or with a ribeye steak. I recommend letting it breathe about 45 minutes after opening. MrWheat score: 89
  1. Zerba Cellars Wild Z Red. 2012. Washington State. $22.49. Blend of 52% Merlot, 48% Cabernet Sauv. I like it on its own or with any red meat or poultry. This wine is a great example of what Walla Walla has to offer. MrWheat score: 91
  1. Robert Karl Claret. Washington State. $19.49. This one I recommend waiting till you have a steak. Any steak will do. A blend of 55% Cabernet Sauv. 17% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 9% Petit Verdot and 9% Malbec. MrWheat score: 91
  1. Kaiken Ultra Malbec. 2013. Argentina. $19.99. Pure Malbec aged 12 months in French oak. Rich flavor. I’ll take mine with roast chicken, thank you. MrWheat score: 91
  1. Marques de Caceres Rioja Reserva. 2013. Spain. $17.99. Tempranillo blend is a bit spicy but still smooth. MrWheat score: 90
  1. Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauv. 2014. Washington State. $9.97. Widely available. From Horse Heaven Hills. Great on its own or with a meal. MrWheat score: 89
  1. Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon. 2012. Chile. $17.99. 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot. Black current and earthy with hint of sage. Let it breathe an hour. Great with potato chips. MrWheat score: 88
  1. Saviah Cellars The Jack Red. 2015. Washington State. $13.99. I recommend letting it breathe about 45 minutes after opening. Blend of 75% Merlot, 7% Malbec, 6% Cabernet Franc, 6% Sangiovese and 5% Petit Verdot. Great with pasta. MrWheat score: 88
  1. Anakena Carmenere Tama Vineyards. 2015. Chile. $12.99 100% Carmenere. A bit of spice. Goes well with pork chop with New Orleans rub. MrWheat score: 88
  1. B-Side Cabernet Sauvignon. 2014. California. $19.97. Widely available. Great for the porch. MrWheat score: 88

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