H3 from Columbia winery here in Washington is my all-time favorite wine under $15.00. No matter your preferred varietal, they have you covered with a red blend, merlot, cabernet, or chardonnay. They’re all delightful, depending on what you like. For newbies, merlot tends to be fruity and floral, whereas cabernet has a rich, bolder taste. Merlot is great with Italian food, for example. Cabernet is traditionally served with red meat. Chardonnay is good with cheese on a sunny afternoon, or with poultry and other lighter dishes.
Despite the French culture’s insistence on strict food and wine pairings, my belief is simpler. If you like a wine, great. If you like a wine with a certain food, that’s great too. Drink what you like, whether it’s supposedly ‘good’ or not. To me, it’s like books. Not every book is for every person. Some like a sexy romance. Others like thought-provoking literary fiction. It’s the same with wine. Drink what you like. If you like a sweeter wine, good for you. If you like it bold and dry like me, good for you too.
So, invite some girlfriends over and do a little tasting party of your own with a few bottles of the H3 varietal. It’s fun to see who likes what. Make notes so you’ll have their favorites on hand when a friend comes by for a glass and a cry, or a glass and a laugh.
Where to find it?
H3 is a Washington wine, making it easy for anyone on the west coast to find it in grocery stores, wine shops, or membership establishments like Costco or Sam’s Club. However, when I was travelling in Georgia a few years back, I was delighted to find it in one of their larger spirits stores. Columbia Winery makes a lot of H3 and they distribute it widely across the U.S, so it would surprise me if you couldn’t find it. On Columbia’s website, it sells for $15, unless you join their club, in which case it lowers to $12. Costco usually has it for around $11. Sometimes lower! Woohoo. I’ve gotten it for under $10 many times. Same with Safeway.
If you try a bottle, please let me know if you enjoyed it or not. Or, send a note anytime if you have questions about wine. I’ll do my best to answer with authority, but if not, I’ll ask my bestie. She and her husband are wine makers.
Drop a note or visit me on my Facebook page.
Tess Thompson is an author of historical and romantic novels. She grew up in a small town in southern Oregon, but now lives in a suburb of Seattle, Washington with her recent groom and their combined household of four kids and five cats. She’s passionate about her family, books, music, art, film, and wine. The hundreds of phenomenal wineries in Washington and Oregon spurred her interest and ultimate obsession with wine and wine-making. Because of her access to Washington’s incredible wine that won’t send you to the poor house—as well as incredible wine that will—she spends a lot of time looking for the best wines under $15.00.