Purchased for $8.99. The Kirkland Signature Columbia Valley Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon is available exclusively at Costco.
From the bottle:
I specifically sought out grapes from the warmest parts of Washington state as they reached an ideal level of ripeness at harvest. Gentle fermentation extracted soft, round tannins while emphasizing the black cherry notes of Merlot, and the ripe black currant characteristics of Cabernet Sauvignon. Sixteen months of barrel aging, in a combination of American and French oak, added to an elegant wine of intense depth and character.
-- Joshua Maloney, Winemaker
While shopping at my local Costco the other day I happened across this wine which appears to be a new entry into the Kirkland Signature line. Since Washington state Merlot is one of our go-to value varieties, I was intrigued to see what the Cabernet would bring to the table. There's been a Columbia Valley Merlot and an excellent Columbia Valley blend in previous years but this is the first time I've spotted this particular wine.
After a little investigation I discovered that the winemaker listed on the label, Joshua Maloney, is a former winemaker for Chateau Ste Michelle and is currently the winemaker for Milbrandt Vineyards as well as his own (very small production) company -- all good signs as he is obviously very familiar with the Columbia Valley. Add in 16 months of aging in oak (which is not cheap) and the $8.99 price tag and I was excited to check this one out.
The Kirkland Signature Columbia Valley Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon begins with aromas of blackberry and spice and it's oh so nice. Swirling and sniffing further reveals a little mint and more dark fruit. Tasting reveals a big, juicy, flavorful wine that drinks way over it's price. There's plenty of oak influence here as well so its best to give it some time to breathe when you first pop it open. Firm tannins, good acidity and more dark fruit and spice lead into the long, dry finish. This wine is a keeper for sure, stock up if your local Costco has it.
Find all of our recommended wines from Costco as well as tips and tricks for shopping the wine department here.