Wednesday, May 24, 2017

2012 Krutz Family Cellars Stagecoach Vineyard Napa Valley CabernetSauvignon

Happy Wine Wednesday!  It's been a busy week so far, so it's nice to celebrate hump day with a nice glass of wine!  Tonight I've decided to open a bottle of 2012 Krutz Family Cellars Stagecoach Vineyard Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that I purchased a month or so ago during a Wines Till Sold Out Napa marathon.  This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (78%), Malbec (13%) and Petite Verdot (9%) from the Stagecoach Vineyard, which ranges from 1,200 to 1,850 feet in elevation, situated between the Pritchard Hill and Atlas Peak AVAs.  So let's see how this one stacks up!

The wine is a deep inky purple at the center, with bright ruby along the edges.  The nose is lovely combination of leather, oak and some earthy notes of peat and sage, somewhat more Bordeaux than big Napa Cabernet.  The taste is white nice, with a rush of ripe black fruit up front, black cherry, blackberry and currant that transition to some lovely notes of mocha and tea leaves midpalate.  The tannins are silky smooth and well integrated for the lingering and very dry finish, that brings a reprise of a bit of Bordeaux style funk at the end.

Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 8.5, as it's a wonderful example of an old world style Cabernet.  This wine would pair well with a nice steak or a variety of spicy Mediterranean dishes, but tonight I am enjoying this wine with a rare grilled Prime ribcap, along with some grilled leeks and Brussels sprouts and a bit of linguine tossed in garlic and olive oil on the side.  The earthy flavors and dark fruit really pair well with the richness of the steak.  Cheers!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

2016 DaMa Wines Rose of Cabernet Franc

What a day!  It started by pouring down rain this morning when I am in a pinch to get my yard and garden ready for having some folks over for a cook out this week (you can't be ill prepared for the first yard gathering of the season!).  But alas, I was able to clean all the patio furniture, pick up branches that came down in the storm, pull weeks and mow in what seemed like a very compressed timeframe, though now that I look at the clock it's been seven hours!  Well with patio get together's and warm weather, it's definitely the start of rose season, and tonight I've decided to open a bottle of 2016 DaMa Wines Rose of Cabernet Franc.  This is a 100% Cabernet Franc, the second vintage from the Chene de Mille Vineyard in the Columbia Valley, so let's see how this one stacks up!

The wine is a lovely, very pale peach color in the glass, such that you might even mistake it for a white wine if you weren't paying attention.  The nose presents aromas of grapefruit, melon, strawberry and a hint of lemongrass.  The taste is quite nice, very fresh, notes of citrus, mango, and a hint of pineapple that transitions to some wonderful white floral and lemongrass midpalate.  The finish has nice backbone, clear acidity and a bone dry finish.

Overall, I like this one better than the 2014 or 2015 vintages, so I'd rate this one a solid 8.  It's crisp and refreshing and this girl is ready for summer!  This wine would pair with a variety of summer dishes, from salmon to a caprese salad, but tonight I am going way off script and enjoying this wine with some chicken Tikka Masala!  What's better with Indian food than a nice dry rose?  Cheers!

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Snooth Murrieta's Well Virtual Tasting

Well, tonight is another wonderful virtual wine tasting featuring wines from Murrieta's Well Estate Vineyard located in the Livermore Valley of California.  The virtual tasting was curated by their winemaker, Robbie Meyer, who struck me as being very down to earth and truly connected to vineyards and someone that treat winemaking more as an art than a science.  In listening to him speak about the vineyards, vines and the wines, he reminded me of some of the wonderful wine craftsmen of the Northwest, like Chuck Reininger, who let their passion shine through their wines.  Overall a pleasure to listen and interact with such a wonderful artist!

We tasted through the wines is a somewhat quixotic order, but I've organized my tasting notes putting the white wines first, followed by the rose and then the reds.

2015 The Whip, a blend of Sauvignon Blanc (30%), Semillion (30%), Chardonnay (30%), Viognier (7%) and Muscat Canelli (3%) - Very nice aromas, notes of flowers, mild citrus and some marked mineral notes, very nice use of the Viognier and Semillion really come through on the nose.  Taste is a perfect summer food wine, I could easily sip this in the patio with some hummus or enjoy with a light summer dinner.

2016 Muscat Canelli (100%) - Pineapple, papaya, white floral, lovely crisp refreshing white, perfect for summer.

2016 Dry Rose, a blend of Grenache (55%) and Cournoise (45%) - Farmed to be a rose, canopy management, picking, to give a great fruit/floral expression.  Lovely floral notes on the nose, peach, apricot and some mineral notes.  Crisp acidity and a very nice, dry finish.  Would be great with cedar planked Coho Salmon filet.

2014 Spur, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (45%), Petite Sirah (22%), Petit Verdot (14%), Merlot (10%) and Cabernet Franc (9%) - Some may group this wine with a Bordeaux style blend, but the addition of Petite Sirah really makes a difference and places it outside the traditional Bordeaux Blends (it also makes a big difference in the taste of the wine, bringing in more fruit.  Nose just makes me want to drink this wine immediately.  Aromas of leather, smoke, oak, warm spice, lovely black fruit, blackberries, cherries.and some notes of dried fig.  Lovely fruit up front, lovely mineral and smoke notes midpalate.  Wonderfully dry, velvety finish.  This was absolutely my favorite of the wines we tasted, and would pair well with a big grilled steak any day of the week!

2014 Cabernet Franc, a blend of Cabernet Franc (88%), Cabernet Sauvignon (6%) and Petit Verdot (6%) - Great earthy nose, white pepper spice, perfect for a chilly autumn evening in front of a fire.  Great with pasta, perhaps with a creamy white sauce, would also be wonderful with a more mellow fish dish, perhaps a halibut steak.

2014 Merlot, a blend of Merlot (90%), Cabernet Sauvignon (7%) and Petit Verdot (3%) - you know I love me some Merlot and this one was a standout!  Notes of cinnamon and ripe blackberry on the nose, wonderful black fruit and spice midpalate.  Midpalate some notes of cocoa, mocha and vanilla bean come through.  The finish is smooth and very dry, well structured tannins on the backbone, pure Merlot joy!

Finally, I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to and Murrieta's Well for sponsoring this wonderful tasting, it was a real treat!