2009 Cabernet Classic: The Recap



By Kori ~ November 4th, 2009.

Gilbert Cellars winesLast week, Dad (John) and I attended the Cabernet Classic sponsored by Seattle Uncorked at the Shilshole Bay Beach Club here in Seattle. It was a fundraiser for CoCA, the Center on Contemporary Art, and featured Cabernets and Cabernet-based blends. We tasted 46 wines from 23 different Washington State wineries. It was a great opportunity to taste wines from some promising newcomers as well as some great veterans of the Washington wine industry.

Six wines received a Quality rating of 4 stars (out of 5) or higher, and seven wines received a QPR rating of 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5). Our favorite wine of the evening was the 2007 Gilbert Cellars Cabernet Franc. We had tasted this wine in the barrel when we visited the winery in June. It was fabulous then and is continuing to improve now that it has been bottled. The grapes for this wine were sourced from 1985 Cabernet Franc vines from Indian Wells Vineyard in the Wahluke Slope. The sad part of this story is that they will never be able to make this same wine again as the vines were ripped out after Gilbert bought these grapes.

Owner/winemaker Gordy Rawson pours his Chatter Creek wines for Cabernet Classic attendeesChatter Creek Winery was another highlight of the evening for us. Owner/winemaker Gordy Rawson was on hand pouring three of his wines. We thought both his 2006 Blend 105 and 2007 Cabernet Franc were excellent.

Here’s a breakdown of the wines that we tasted at the Cabernet Classic. Under each Quality heading, the wine name and region within Washington State will be listed along with price and QPR rating. Wines in bold type received a QPR rating of 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5).

Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
2007 Gilbert Cellars Cabernet Franc, Wahluke Slope, $32, QPR: 4

Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
2006 Windy Point Vineyards Pointless Red, Yakima Valley, $15, QPR: 5
2006 Chatter Creek Blend 105, Columbia Valley, $20, QPR: 5
2007 Cedergreen Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $36, QPR: 5
2004 Forgeron Cellars Champoux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $46, QPR: 5

2007 Chatter Creek Cabernet Franc, Horse Heaven Hills, $22, QPR: 4

Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
2004 Windy Point Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon, Yakima Valley, $21, QPR: 5
2006 Gamache Vintners Boulder Red, Columbia Valley, $18, QPR: 4
2007 Edmonds Winery Delorious, Columbia Valley, $23, QPR: 4
2006 Pondera Winery Melvado, Columbia Valley, $23, QPR: 4
2005 Forgeron Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $30, QPR: 4
2007 Gilbert Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Wahluke Slope, $32, QPR: 4
2006 Patterson Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Red Mountain, $32, QPR: 4
2006 Cedergreen Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $36, QPR: 4
2005 Brian Carter Cellars Solesce, Yakima Valley, $58, QPR: 1

Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
2006 Jones of Washington Cabernet Sauvignon, Wahluke Slope, $15, QPR: 5
2006 Silver Lake Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Rattlesnake Hills, $19.99, QPR: 5
2006 Skylite Cellars Big Red Hiney, Walla Walla Valley, $14.95, QPR: 4
NV Patterson Cellars Woodslake Due Anni, Washington State, $16, QPR: 4
2006 Big Daddy Red Wine, Columbia Valley, $18, QPR: 4
2007 Brian Carter Cellars Abracadabra, Columbia Valley, $20, QPR: 4
2005 Martinez & Martinez Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $23, QPR: 4
2004 Glen Fiona Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $24.99, QPR: 4
2006 Chatter Creek Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $25, QPR: 4
2006 Jones of Washington Jack’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Wahluke Slope, $25, QPR: 4
2007 Edmonds Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $25, QPR: 4
2003 Lowden Hills Cabernet Sauvignon, Walla Walla Valley, $27, QPR: 4
2005 Skylite Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Walla Walla Valley, $28, QPR: 4
2002 Lowden Hills Cabernet Sauvignon, Walla Walla Valley, $28, QPR: 4
2005 Gamache Vintners Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $28, QPR: 4
2006 Alexandria Nicole Alderdale Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $35, QPR: 3
2005 Cedergreen Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $36, QPR: 3
2006 Pondera Winery Consensio, Columbia Valley, $33, QPR: 2
2006 Smasne Cellars Clone 6 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, $48, QPR: 2

Quality: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
2006 Big Smooth Red Wine, Washington State, $18, QPR: NR
2007 Coyote Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $18, QPR: NR
2007 Alexandria Nicole Quarry Butte, Horse Heaven Hills, $20, QPR: NR
2006 Martinez & Martinez Cesar Red, Horse Heaven Hills, $20, QPR: NR
2007 Smasne Cellars County Line Red, Columbia Valley, $20, QPR: NR
2004 Eaton Hill Cabernet Sauvignon, Yakima Valley, $22, QPR: NR
2004 Lowden Hills Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $24, QPR: NR
2005 Palouse Winery Eclipse, Rattlesnake Hills, $26, QPR: NR
2005 Eaton Hill Cabernet Sauvignon, Yakima Valley, $31, QPR: NR
2006 Palouse Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, Rattlesnake Hills, $36, QPR: NR
2005 Alder Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Horse Heaven Hills, $40, QPR: NR

Quality: 2 stars (out of 5)
2005 Coyote Canyon Bozak Red, Horse Heaven Hills, $28, QPR: NR


Filed under: American Wine, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Red Wine, Washington State Wine, Wine Activities/Events, Wines NOT To Buy (1 & 2 Star), Wines Over $25, Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. tony smith | November 4th, 2009 at 9:47 am

    Hi Kori, how did you decide on which wines to taste at this tasting? i assume there were others you didn’t get to…I only ask because I was looking to see if you had reviewed Nota Bene and I had heard they were at this event. Just curious.

  2. Kori | November 4th, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    Tony,
    Our intention was the taste all of the wines at the event, so we started out going table to table. As the evening progressed, the crowd increased making it impossible to get to everyone. When we realized that we would not be able to taste all of the wines, we started skipping around, visiting wineries whose wines we had not previously tasted or not tasted very often. Nota Bene was there, but unfortunately, they were one of the wineries that we missed. Here’s a link to a post from last year when we visited Nota Bene and several other South Seattle wineries: http://winepeeps.com/2008/12/31/special-holiday-tastings-at-south-seattle-artisan-wineries/

    Cheers!

  3. Paul Zitarelli | November 6th, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    Kori – catching up on blog reading on Friday night. Sounds like a great event, and I’m pleased that you got to chat a bit with Gordy. I’m a big fan of him and think Chatter Creek wines are incredible values.

  4. Kori | November 11th, 2009 at 7:40 am

    Thanks, Paul. It was a fun event but did get a bit crowded as the night went on. We definitely enjoyed the opportunity to taste the Chatter Creek wines again. Gordy is a talented winemaker and a very nice guy. Cheers!

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