Roughly 140,000 cases were produced, making this (along with the Two Vines) the benchmark budget Merlot for the state, if not the country. These wines are given plenty of cellaring, which helps to soften them up. The style is wide open and flavorful, with broad cherry and berry fruit set against very smooth, chocolatey tannins. The Grand Estates has thicker, more substantial weight and a silky, milk chocolatey finish.
Paul Gregutt is a Contributing Editor for Wine Enthusiast magazine, a founding member of the magazine’s Tasting Panel, and reviews the wines of Oregon and Canada. The author of the critically-acclaimed Washington Wines & Wineries—The Essential Guide, he consulted on the Pacific Northwest entries in current versions of The World Atlas of Wine and The Oxford Companion to Wine.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.