Wine of the Week

Hightower Cellars 2017 Murray Red Wine

Appellation: Columbia Valley

We’ve mentioned this many times, but Tim and Kelly Hightower prompt us to reference it again — they create some of the most wonderfully balanced reds in the Northwest. And yet, that’s not necessarily natural for some when pulling from Red Mountain, often associated with robust reds. However, their Murray tier showcases their ability as blenders, and it’s no surprise to see this 2017 drinking so well considering their 2016 Murray Red was best of class last year at the 2019 Great Northwest Invitational at the historic Columbia Gorge Hotel in Hood River, Ore. The 2017 Murray Red takes a Right Bank Bordeaux angle by leading with Merlot (39%), and it follows with Cabernet Sauvignon (28%), Malbec (22%) Petit Verdot (6%) and Cabernet Franc. The Hightowers rely on their Out of Line Estate Vineyard for most of this blend, yet historic Red Willow Vineyard is a significant factor. Expect a wine of beautiful decadence, offering blackcurrant, cassis, toast, violets and raspberry leaf with Craisin, strawberry-rhubarb jam and wet stone combining for a long finish. This fall, it ranked as the highest-scoring red blend of the 21st Platinum Judging, where one panelist described it as “a world-class wine” — and that was without knowing the price.

Rated “Double Platinum!” by Wine Press Northwest.

Price: $20

Production: 447 cases

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Alcohol: 14.2%

Food pairings: Enjoy with grilled beef, lamb and wild game, chicken fajitas, rich stews, strongly flavored cheese and desserts based on Baker’s chocolate.

Hightower Cellars

19418 E 583 PR NE

Benton City, WA 99320

509-588-2867

hightowercellars.com

Great Northwest Wine

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