Chardonnay may be the most-grown wine grape in California, but to many drinkers, the West Coast means red wines. Here we have a selection from several areas, including the Sonoma appellations, Paso Robles and the Columbia Valley of Washington. Plus the names Paul Hobbs, Concannon and Hedges, which generally means wines of high quality and often good value.
Check out our selected list of wines to try.
Three Sticks “Head High” Sonoma County pinot noir 2013 ($30)
Quite enjoyable with lots of rooty, cola, and raspberry flavors. There has a nice, non-Burgundian kick in the finish.
Three Sticks “Head High” California red wine 2014 ($30)
A somewhat-spicy Bordeaux blend where the spiciness helps save the somewhat bland fruit.
Fulcrum “On Point” Sonoma Coast pinot noir 2013 ($34)
Very seductive, with the sweet fruit of juice cherries, yet a good balance and crisp acidity in finish.
Paul Hobbs “CrossBarn” Sonoma Coast pinot noir 2013 ($34)
Very fresh cherries, some rooty notes, and black raspberries with well-defined spicy edges and a touch of cream in the finish.
Paul Hobbs “CrossBarn” Anderson Valley pinot noir 2013 ($36)
A plump pinot — big, ripe cherries with rooty notes — but one with good acidity.
Paul Hobbs “CrossBarn” Sonoma Coast rosé of pinot noir 2013 ($39)
Rich flavors of tart strawberries with a touch of cream — full-bodied and well-balanced.
Justin Paso Robles cabernet sauvignon 2013 ($25)
Not quite a truffle, but a warm and cozy cab with cherry fruit, some mint, and chocolate in the finish.
Concannon Paso Robles cabernet sauvignon 2013 ($20)
Well-rounded with fresh and mellow cherries and a finish of light caramel and creamy chocolate.
Concannon San Francisco Bay petite sirah 2013 ($20)
Lots of blueberry cream, but with a tart blackberry backbone and quite long on the palate.
Hedges “Red Mountain” Columbia Valley red wine 2012 ($27)
A complex, quite enjoyable Bordeaux-style blend with red fruits, spice, cream, and light chocolate — very long on the palate.
Hedges “Red Mountain Cuvée Marcel DuPont” Columbia Valley syrah 2012 ($27)
Ripe, somewhat gamey red fruits with good earthiness and moderate tannins — quite enjoyable.
Hedges “Red Mountain La Haute Cuvee” Columbia Valley red wine 2012 (magnum, $49)
Unlike the previous Hedges wines, this one lacks vibrancy and complexity, simply mulled red fruits.