Tasting at Rhys
Tasted April 5, 2012 - April 11, 2012 by alanr with 279 views
Joined Frank Murray's group up at Rhys to sit down and taste through most of the 2010s, and a few additions. A spectacularly clear day to sit in the renovated upstairs tasting room, look out over the South Bay, and sample some excellent wines, led by an enthusiastic and informative Jeff Brinkman.
Flight 1 - Rhys Chardonnays (4 notes)
A sampling of the two vineyard Chardonnays from three vintages. I was blown away by the quality and uniqueness of these wines, which have an unusual level of intensity and concentration for such low alcohol wines. These wines resist being connected to either Burgundy or other California, they are uniquely Rhys.
2010 Rhys Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard
Very rich, intense, honey, dried pineapple, full bodied, great acidity, long finish. A bit rounder and softer than the 2010 Alpine, but still plenty of cut. These Rhys Chardonnays are in a world of their own, resisting any obvious connection to either Burgundy or other California wines. Fabulous and unique.
2010 Rhys Chardonnay Alpine Vineyard
Very rich, orange blossom honey, fabulous piercing acidity, lemon, steely mineral finish. Another example of the uniqueness and intense concentration of the Rhys Chardonnays, somehow achieving these levels while maintaining amazing acidity and balance.
2008 Rhys Chardonnay Alpine Vineyard
Intense, rich, honeyed, dried pineapple, fabulous acidity, excellent finish. Achieves levels of concentration and flavor, together with balancing acidity unlike many other wines in the world. Hard to describe these Rhys Chardonnays, they resist being categorized as "burgundian" or "Californian," they are their own category.
Flight 2 - Rhys Pinots (10 notes)
Next, on to the Pinots, I think the entire range from 2010, plus a couple of earlier vintages for comparison. There is a broader range of wines coming from the various vineyards, with a couple reaching elevated heights (no pun intended), and all of them being at least very good.
2010 Rhys Pinot Noir Home Vineyard
Less obvious whole cluster on the nose in this wine, nice dried cherry fruit, excellent structure, drinks quite well even at this youthful stage. Very nice.
2010 Rhys Pinot Noir Bearwallow Vineyard
Stems and spice on the nose, palate is rich, lush black cherry, nicely balanced, decent acidity. Enjoyable, and a pretty clear distinction between this and the Santa Cruz Mountains wines.
Flight 3 - Rhys Syrahs (2 notes)
Finished off with the two vineyard Syrahs, which show great promise for this cool climate location.
Thanks again to Jeff, and Kevin for letting us all come up and spend an afternoon. And to Frank for including me.
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