|Bottles of Bernardus wine|
Wines Scored – (in Order of Tasting):
Bernardus 2010 Monterey County Sauvignon Blanc ($16.00) - *** ½
Bernardus 2010 Griva Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc ($20.00) - *** ½
Bernardus 2009 Monterey County Chardonnay ($22.00) - *** ½
Bernardus 2008 Rosella’s Vineyard Chardonnay ($40.00) - *** ½+
Bernardus 2008 Ingrid’s Vineyard Chardonnay ($40.00) - ****+
Bernardus 2009 Sierra Mar Chardonnay ($40.00) - **** ½
Bernardus 2007 Rosella’s Vineyard Pinot Noir ($75.00) - *** ½+
Bernardus 2007 Marinus - Cab Sauv/Merlot/Petit Verdot/Cab Franc ($28.00) - ****+
Bernardus 2004 Swan Block Merlot ($125.00) - **** ½
|Front of Morgan's tasting room|
|Inside the Morgan Tasting room|
From there we left Carmel Valley Village and made the drive to Morgan’s tasting room that was located in an open-air mall just outside of Carmel (The Crossroads Shopping Village). Established in 1982 Morgan is another of the Monterey wineries that specializes in Pinot Noir and Chardonnay but also has quite a love-fest going with Rhone-style reds too. The mall tasting room does not have all the wines produced by Morgan but they have a great cross-section of what they are producing. Deborah, the manager at this location, took us on a tasting tour from light to “heavy” starting with the Sauvignon Blanc and ending with the estate Syrah. Best wine: 2009 Cotes du Crow’s ($18.00) a 50/50 Rhone-like blend of Syrah and Grenache; lovely raspberry fruit dominated this one from start to finish, soft and easy to drink this one also had silky tannins that made it a pleasant sipper for any time of day (****+).
Morgan 2010 Metallico Chardonnay ($20.00) - *** ½
Morgan 2009 Highland Chardonnay ($26.00) - *** ½
Morgan 2009 Double L Chardonnay ($36.00) - ****
Morgan 2009 Twelve Clones Pinot Noir ($32.00) - *** ½+
Morgan 2009 Cotes du Crow’s ($18.00) - ****+
Morgan 2008 Syrah ($20.00) - ****
Morgan 2008 Double L Syrah ($40.00) - ****
Now it was time to head back to Carmel and see if those tasting rooms were finally open … we started at Galante, and for the second time found the door locked (this time for a bank run), so we hightailed it two blocks over and a block up to Wrath, also located in a mall-type setting, right beside a place called the Cheese Shop on the lower level. Wrath’s original name was San Saba Vineyards, but the son took it over and was looking for a re-branding of the winery and came up with the rather interesting and memorable name of Wrath, I liked the look of the label but I suspect they get that a lot. They are mainly a Pinot and Chardonnay house with a smattering of Syrah. We approached Amy with an hour and a half left in her day and perused the wine list … quite long and very interesting, but we lacked the time to try it all, especially since we had one more tasting room to get to that closed at the same time. I asked Amy to picked the best of the three kinds of wine they made, the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir were delightful. Chardonnay: 2008 San Saba Chardonnay ($49.00) aged in 70% new French, this is the estate vineyard which still keeps the original name; lovely mouthfeel with nice spice on the back palate – tropical fruit, vanilla bean, hazelnut, caramel and lots of sweet buttery notes (****+). Pinot Noir: 2009 McIntyre Vineyard Pinot Noir ($49.00), a whopping 14.7% alcohol here but it does not show on the nose or the palate. The nose is blueberry, cherry and cocoa laced with spice and dark fruit on the palate, robust tannin structure and a great long finish seals the deal after every sip (****+).
Wrath 2008 San Saba Chardonnay ($49.00) - ****+
Wrath 2009 McIntyre Vineyard Pinot Noir ($49.00) - ****+
Wrath 2008 Doctor’s Vineyard Syrah – ($39.00) - ****
Wrath 2008 Noble Wrath – late harvest Sauvignon Blanc – ($35.00 / 375ml) - *** ½+
|The door to Galante wines|
That should have concluded my winery tasting in California, but little did I know my days of tasting in California were far from over.
Next up: A Taste of Monterey, wine store and tasting bar.