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Spring Sipper and BBQ Red

Columbia Crest Wine
Columbia Crest Wine
Alison Brooks

Columbia Crest Grand Estate Pinot Gris and H3 Cabernet Sauvignon

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Wineries that offer wonderful wines and even better price ranges tend to be more appealing to the wine consumer -- especially if you are going wine tasting. When every bottle from a certain vineyard is $30 and up, well, that can be a turn off. Columbia Crest Winery has three different labels with different prices. The less expensive is the Columbia Crest Grand Estates, which run $7-12. Then there is the middle price range wine - Horse Heaven Hills (H3), which run around $10-15. Finally, the top of the line, the Reserves typically run $30 and up. It is always nice to have options. Let's take a look at two different priced wines with Columbia Crest.

Picture cutting into a fresh pineapple, the juices running out and the fresh smell of tropical goodness. That is the exact nose on the Columbia Crest 2012 Pinot Gris. Lime sneaks up on your nose. Fellow lime-lovers will be noticeably pleased. Sip this wine and you are greeted with tropical fruit and peach that linger on the palate. Not as light as your typical Pinot Gris (or Grigios). The reason this wine is so appealing? Unlike a lot of Pinot Grigios and Pinot Gris, it has some body to it. Chardonnay fans will love this wine as well as Sauvignon Blanc fans. A wine to please everyone!

Now, for the red wine fans. Horse Heaven Hills, better known as H3 Cabernet Sauvignon screams, "pair me with meat!" A pleasant darkness of ruby red takes over the glass as it is swirled. The aromas of dark fruit engulf the nose. Ripe blackberry and black cherry on the palate seem to linger as if they are frozen. Slight hints of vanilla can be detected the more you sip the wine. Soft like butter, these are some smooth tannins. Cocoa on the finish that seems to hold on like a rock climber to a mountain. The longer the finish the better!

Try the Pinot Gris with a nice grilled fish or pasta dish. Or heck, sip it on its own! H3 Cabernet is the perfect grilled meats wine. Whether you serve it with grilled steak, pork or chicken, this wine just pairs so well with grilled flavors. Perfect Spring wines with perfect price tags.

Grand Estate Pinot Gris
Harris Teeter on Glebe Road in Arlington $9

H3 Cabernet Sauvignon
Total Wine & More $10.97
Costco Pentagon City $10
BJ's Wilson Blvd Arlington $10
Safeway, Giant and Harris Teeter - Prices vary between $10-15

Both wines can be found at numerous restaurants as well.