Wine Press Northwest asked Pacific Northwest wineries to send them red wines that retail for $30 or less. Out of all the Oregon, Washington, and Idaho wineries who submitted, two Lewis Clark Valley wineries made the list.
In the red blends category 100 wines were judged. Colter’s Creek Koo Koos Kia ($22) and 2013 Arrow Rim Red ($30) received Outstanding and Excellent along with Clearwater Canyon Cellars 2014 Renaissance Red ($23).
Colter’s Creek 2014 Syrah was judged “Outstanding” in the Rhone Varieties category.
Visit the tasting rooms of these and other Lewis Clark Valley wineries, and we think you’ll find even more Top Wines Under $30.
Tasting notes for each of the wines judged:
Colter’s Creek Winery Arrow Rim Red GSM
This luscious Rhône-style blend is from the recently approved Lewis-Clark Valley, an AVA that stretches across both sides of the Snake River in Idaho and Washington. This is a spicy wine with aromas of blackberry and game meats, followed by flavors of black pepper, cola, blackberry and mocha. It’s all backed by well-managed tannins. (200 cases; 14.6% alc.)
Clearwater Canyon Cellars Renaissance Red
Lewiston winemaker Coco Umiker made a mostly Bordeaux-style blend — with a bit of Syrah to add depth. The result is a wine with aromas of plum, blackberry and moist earth, followed by big, rich flavors of black currant and cola with a creamy midpalate and a smoky finish. (475 cases; 14.2% alc.)
Colter’s Creek Winery Koo Koos Kia
Lewis-Clark Valley winemaker Melissa Sanborn crafted this delicious red from Bordeaux varieties and leads with Cabernet Sauvignon. Aromas of blackberry, black cherry and mint lead to flavors of black tea, dark chocolate and blackberry. It’s all backed by well-managed tannins. (370 cases; 13.7% alc.)
Colter’s Creek Winery Syrah
Winemaker Melissa Sanborn and husband/viticulturist Mike Pearson are rising stars in the Idaho wine industry, producing wines of grace and power from their own vines in the Lewis-Clark Valley new Lewiston. They also show what they can do with fruit from the Snake River Valley to the south with this delicious wine. It provides aromas and flavors of blackberry, plum and black pepper. A juicy mouth feel leads to a finish that is as creamy as crème brûlée. (800 cases; 14.5% alc.)