Overview

Meticulously hand-crafted in our Petit Chai – a “winery- within-a-winery” – the Reserve wines represent the pinnacle of winemaking at Columbia Crest. Sourced from premier vineyard sites, less than one percent of the nest grape yields will qualify for the Columbia Crest Reserve program, and these wines receive the same hands-on care and attention-to-detail associated with the world’s most exclusive boutique wineries.

History

  • Columbia Crest’s history begins in 1978 with the planning of over 500 acres of vineyards near the site where construction would eventually begin for the winery.
  • Designed by Seattle’s Howard S. Write, the French country manor house winery and visitor center was opened in June, 1983. Ninety percent of the winemaking facility is housed underground to maintain year-round temperature and humidity control.
  • In 1985, the rst release of the 1984 Vineyard Reserve White, a medium dry blend of Riesling, Gewürztraminer and Muscat Canelli, was crafted by Doug Gore, Columbia Crest’s rst winemaker.
  • Following, in 1986, Columbia Crest released the Vineyard Reserve Blush, a Grenache-based blend.
  • In 2001, the Reserve Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon were introduced.
  • In 2002, the 1999 vintage Walter Clore Private Reserve,
    a Bordeaux-style red wine, was released. The wine honors Washington wine pioneer Walter Clore, Ph.D.
  • In 2003, the 1999 vintage Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is ranked #1 by wine experts (wine retailers, sommeliers, wine media) in blind tastings of Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines that occurred in New York City and Chicago. Columbia Crest beat wines from Bordeaux, California and Washington, all of which cost as much as four times the price of Columbia Crest.
  • In 2009, Wine Spectator named the 2005 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon the No. 1 Wine in the World, the rst time Washing- ton wine has received this ranking. The wine was selected from more than 17,000 wines tasted by editors throughout the year.

Key Personnel

Juan Muñoz Oca, Head Winemaker

Winemaker Philosophy

Our goal at Columbia Crest is to enhance the lives of those who enjoy our wines by growing grapes that have the potential to become meaningful wines; wines that represent not only the place where the grapes were grown, but the people that cared for them and witnessed their transformation into a drinkable delight.

The winemaking we do at Columbia Crest is rooted in tradition, but framed by innovation. Tradition, because we maintain the winemaking style our predecessors chose and our millions of fans around the world have come to love. Innovation, because although we have been in the Columbia Valley for over three decades, our winegrowing is constantly evolving and developing as we learn how to manage the countless micro-climates contained within Washington state’s appellations.

Respect for the grapes, the people that care for them and the experience of opening a bottle of Columbia Crest is what drives everything we do.

~ Juan Muñoz Oca, Head Winemaker

Vineyards

COLUMBIA VALLEY AVA

Wautoma Springs is a small vineyard nestled in the heart of the Cold Creek district. This low-yielding vineyard planted exclusively with Cabernet Sauvignon on weak, silty loam, rocky.

Beverly Vineyard is a low-yielding vineyard tucked away on a gently sloping hill overlooking the Columbia River at Sentinel Gap.

Four Feathers vineyard is a high-elevation, low-yielding site in the Yakima Valley. The vines are nestled against a softly sloping hill in sandy loam soils and yield an average of only two tons per acre. This ensures small cluster and berry sizes, resulting in deeply colored wines with intense varietal flavors.

WAHLUKE SLOPE AVA

Stone Tree Vineyard graces the beautiful Wahluke Slope on the hillside. The at agricultural site allows for viticulture uniformity in plant vigor and ripening while the vine roots tap into the mineral-rich under layer, adding to the grapes’ character.

HORSE HEAVEN HILLS AVA

Columbia Crest’s Estate vineyards consists of south-facing slopes that provide excellent sun exposure for grape ripening, and good air drainage which protects the vineyards during the winter months. Strong wind patterns, which are unique to Horse Heaven Hills, reduce canopy size and density, create better sun exposure, and contribute to even ripening by moderating temperature extremes.

Coyote Canyon Vineyard is located in the heart of the Horse Heaven Hills Appellation. The vines are planted on the southern exposed slopes of the vineyard, one of the highest in the appellation. The region’s low rainfall and high wind pressure stresses the vines and ultimately yields concentrated fruit with depth and varietal expression.

 

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