Monday, December 15, 2014

Report from ... Sonoma in the City - October 9, 2014

From the tasting booklet ... "Sonoma County's sixteen AVAs define the diversity of this renowned wine area and exhibit a far greater variety of wine styles and grapes than you will find in most any other premium wine area.  From the highly regarded Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs of the Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast, to the dense flavorful Zinfandels of Dry Creek Valley, to a comparison of Syrahs from different regions throughout the county, Sonoma County's range of geography - valleys to mountains, coastal ranges to inland beach lands - is second to none."

Sparkling Wine ...
Gloria Ferrer Sonoma Brut Sparkling Wine ($27.95)
fresh, lively and fruity with good bubbles and acidity
- a nice balance between the sweet and acid (****)
Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs ($28.95)
92% Pinot Noir / 8% Chardonnay and slightly pink from a little more skin contact
acidity sings, this is vibrant and fresh, delicate and delicious with gentle raspberry (****+)

Cabernet Sauvignon ...

Kunde 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon ($23.95)
smooth blackberry and cassis, black cherry and nice balance of tannins (*** 1/2+)
Decoy 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon ($33.95)
a nice richness of flavour mixing cassis, chocolate and black cherry (****)

Arrowood 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma County
blackberry, black cherry, strawberry,
hints of cherry-tobacco and mocha-spice on the finish (****)
Anakota 2009 Helena Dakota Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($90.00)
big and juicy yet balanced Cabernet full of mocha, blackberry, and cassis
- quite the mouthfilling wine (****)
Chardonnay ...

La Follette Wines 2012 Sangiacomo Vineyard Chardonnay ($50.00)
lovely fruit mixes with butterscotch ripple and hazelnut with
nice spiced-vanilla and peach (****+)
Flowers 2012 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($64.95)
rich and round with nice apple sauce, vanilla and smoke
with a nice butteryness on the finish (****+)

Ramey 2011 Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay ($90.00)
rich and buttery, almond and hazelnut; touch of vanilla, caramel and apple (****)
Hartford 2012 Russian River Valley Chardonnay ($49.95)
fresh fruit, vanilla, apple with a dusting of butter and spice (****)
MacMurray Ranch 2012 Chardonnay ($21.95)
gentle fruit and acidity make this a pleasant sipper (*** 1/2)
 Pinot Noir ...

Siduri 2012 Sonatera Vineyard Pinot Noir ($75.00)
black cherry, hint of plum and smoke with white pepper (*** 1/2+)
Buena Vista 2012 Private Reserve Pinot Noir ($75.00)
delicate and delicious showing nice acidity
as well as cherry and plum (*** 1/2+)

Deloach Estate 2011 Olivet Bench Pinot Noir ($69.00)
a single vineyard Pinot with nice acidity, sour plum and
black cherry with a richness of fruit and balanced flavour (*** 1/2+)
Patz & Hall 2012 Jenkin's Ranch Pinot Noir ($75.00)
good acidity with sour cherry and cranberry wrapped in plums
and covered in pepperyness (****)

Dutton-Goldfield 2012 Dutton Ranch Pinot Noir ($60.00)
generous of red fruit with raspberry and cranberry coctail notes;
the finish is a pleasant mix of acidity and spice (*** 1/2+)
Wild Ridge 2011 Sonoma County Pinot Noir
ripe red fruit but very well-balance; hint of cranberry and raspberry;
great mouthfeel and good acidity (****+)
Hartford 2012 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir ($49.95)
cran-cherry fruit, great acidic backbone. (****)
Red Blends ...

Trentadue 2012 Old Patch Lot 37 Red ($18.95)
a blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carignan and Syrah
gives a wine that raspberry dominated with touches of white pepper (*** 1/2+)
Buena Vista 2012 The Count Founder's Red ($24.95)
another raspberry dominated blend with plum, cherry and vanilla-smoke backing (****)
Zinfandel ...

Carol Shelton 2011 Rockpile Rocky Reserve Zinfandel ($48.00)
almost sweet with vanilla, cherry-cola, rich mouthfeel and floral nuances (****)
Carol Shelton 2011 Karma Zin Bastoni Vineyard Zinfandel ($40.00)
plum, black cherry, cola and vanilla balanced by hits of minerality
amongst all that fruit - which gives it added complexity (****+)
Quiviera 2012 Reserve Zinfandel ($44.00)
lovely, rich, sexy plum notes with just a touch of spice and pepper (****)
Pedroncelli 2011 Bushnell Vineyard Zinfandel ($24.00)
vanilla, red fruit dominated with a healthy dose of tannins;
a finish that has lip-smacking strawberry and mocha (****+)
St. Francis 2012 "Old Vines" Zinfandel, Sonoma County ($27.95)
raspberry, black cherry, plum, vanilla and spice
- quite silky and elegant - made from 50-110 year old vines (****+)
DeLoach 2009 Forgotten Vines Zinfandel ($43.00)
pre-prohibition vines; rich and succulent, vanilla, raisins,
plum, blackberry, cherry, cola and spice; good complexity
- nice acidity barely shows its 15% alcohol (**** 1/2)

Ravenswood 2011 Teldeschi Single Vineyard Zinfandel ($44.95)
shows and elegance of fruit and smoke to plum and cherry -
richness and power with lots of acidity (****+)
Folie a Deux 2012 Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel, Sonoma County 
there's a sweetness here that Folie is known for in its Menage a Trois,
but it's not overpowering and fits with the wine (*** 1/2)

Dry Creek Vineyard 2012 Old Vine Zinfandel ($39.95)
average of 90+ year old vines (ranging between 70-120 years)
stunning raspberry with elegant earthy, cherry, plum, vanilla
and gentle spice; there's also 15% Petite Sirah in here for colour (****+)
 Other Reds ...

Quivira Wine 2012 Creek Ranch Grenache ($45.00)
plenty of raspberry and cherry with plum backing (*** 1/2+)
St. Francis 2011 Cabernet Franc, Sonoma Valley ($60.00)
this is a real limited edition wine, but so worth it:
smoky, tobacco and spice - BIG spice (****)

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