California Wine Country with Jill for our 30th's

California

Tasted September 9, 2012 - September 15, 2012 by beezer6 with 504 views

Flight 1 (5 notes)

White
2010 Peter Michael Chardonnay La Carrière USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
93 points
Private tour and tasting at Peter Michael Winery.
Exotic citrus notes of meyer lemon, zesty lemon custard.
Great elegant medium bodied wine with finesse and balance. Really clean finish.
White
2010 Peter Michael Chardonnay Ma Belle-Fille USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
94 points
Private tour and tasting at Peter Michael Winery.
Bigger and richer than the Carriere from a higher elevated vineyard. Buttered popcorn, minerals, yellow apples and pear. So big and layered but still great restraint and acidity overall.
Nuts and caramel along with some pleasant baking spice that leaves an excellent mouth feel on the back end. Really well made.
White
2011 Peter Michael Sauvignon Blanc L'Apres-Midi USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
91 points
Private tour and tasting at Peter Michael Winery.
Excellent mineral driven nose. A little fresh cotton and linen.
Tropical and citrus fruit. Touch of flint and smoke on the finish. A different styled SB. Recommended.
Red
2009 Peter Michael Les Pavots USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
95 points
Private tour and tasting at Peter Michael Winery.
Stunning nose of violets, cassis, blueberry pie, cooler plums and fresh new leather.
Excellent length and poise in the finish. Elegant and supple. Lavender qualities on the back end.
Highly recommended. Great vintage of this awesome wine.
Red
2009 Peter Michael L'Esprit des Pavots USA, California, Sonoma County, Knights Valley
92 points
Private tour and tasting at Peter Michael Winery.
More restraint than the regular Pavots. Medium bodied and read to drink quite soon.
Grape, purple ripe plum and really just like...grapes.
Really approachable. Even some strawberry on the finish. Really really nice. Again, a solid showing of the vintage.

Flight 2 (8 notes)

White - Sparkling
2008 Williams Selyem Blanc de Noir Drake Estate Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
92 points
What a cool wine to taste at the winery! An Estate Blanc de Blanc Brut. So yummy and stylish. Not at all over done.
Minerals and nice green fruit. Great purity and clean white flowers. Cotton and fresh linen. Lovely.
White
2011 Williams Selyem Chardonnay Unoaked USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
90 points
Nice accessible fruit. Bright green apples, pears. Lovely lighter styling. Fresh and really clean.
Red
2010 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
91 points
Spicy sweet strawberry. Floral darker red roses. Lovely layered caramel and light nuts.
Red
2008 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Russian River Valley USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
90 points
Textbook dark cherry cola. Medium palate. Ripe and light toffee flavors.
Red
2010 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Westside Road Neighbors USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
93 points
Earth, moss. Green vegetation. Very fresh. Spicy pepper. Great texture on the palate. Long finish. Feminine. Soft. Supple. Excellent. SO young.
Red
2004 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Ferrington Vineyard USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley
92 points
Spicy, racy and dark than others. Really rustic and more brooding. Earthy and really clean. Dark touches of smoky volcanic rock.
Red
2005 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Weir Vineyard USA, California, North Coast, Yorkville Highlands
93 points
Beautiful lighter more Burgundian style. Shrooms, green olive tapenade. Some nice savory smoky elements.
Palate is lush and caressing but still has great acidity. Overall feminine in style but still lots of flavor.
Red
2006 Williams Selyem Zinfandel Forchini Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
90 points
Dark rustic and masculine. Brooding blackberries, black olive, coal and black peppercorns.

Flight 3 (2 notes)

Red
2004 Ovid Experiment E0.4 USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
What a great first vintage of experiment. Spicy red fruit. Black olive, fig, dark roast caramel.
Lovely extraction while keeping the wine lively and light on its feet.
Red
2009 Ovid Red Wine USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
Dark plum, cherries, dark earth. Lush and velvety. Very ripe and elegant.
Nice poise in the mid palate, nothing hollow there. Very young but decanted well in advance.

Flight 4 (5 notes)

White
2011 David Arthur Sauvignon Blanc USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford
88 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
Supple but not overdone. Lightly ripe. Palate is softer. Light pepper spice and white floral notes.
Palate is balance and shows a kiss of oak.
Red
2009 David Arthur Meritaggio USA, California, Napa Valley
91 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
Great elegance. Balance, medium dark cherry and raspberry cola.
Touch of that red road tar and stewed tomato.
Great finesse and plump styling while maintaining some austere rusticity. Nice.
Red
2006 David Arthur Cabernet Sauvignon Estate USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
92 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
Gorgeous dark cherry sweeps down the palate. Aromas of cassis, chocolate and humidor.
Great precision with a clean finish. Elegant and royal styling. In line with DA house style.
Red
2007 David Arthur Cabernet Sauvignon Estate USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
93 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
Lush, extremely pretty and lengthy fruit sports fleshy ripe black cherry, and purple plums.
Flowers, granite and minerals. Palate is rich but shows nice restraint.
One of the best Estate - that is non 1147 - Cabs I've tried form the winery.
Red
2010 David Arthur Cabernet Sauvignon Elevation 1147 USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford
94 points
Private winery tour and tasting.
What a special opportunity to taste and then be given this bottle just two days after its bottling.
This is a big boy built for aging. Black olive, black berries, black cherry, pencil dead and flint.
Fresh leather and some nice funk. A complete package as the mid palate holds nice fruit and the finish is long and rich.
Tannins support the fruit and alcohol but this should be laid down for at least five years.
A special thanks to David Long for the engagement gift!
1 person found this helpful Comment

Flight 5 (4 notes)

White
2005 Caymus Sauvignon Blanc USA, California, Napa Valley
90 points
Taste at the winery. Saw six months of oak and two years in the bottle at the winery.
Clean fresh nose is white fruit and light peach fuzz driven.
Minerals and early morning dew qualities. Very fresh green melon.
Palate is moderate complex and shows more green apple and pear.
Subtle and not too tart or acidic. Balanced. Touch of funk. Unique styling. Nice age.
Red
2009 Caymus Zinfandel USA, California, Napa Valley
92 points
Taste at the winery.
Restrained nose, especially for a Zinfandel. Softer with a touch of Petite Sirah believe it or not.
Darker nose still with black fruit, rocky black soil. Palate is balanced but still has grip with a little plum.
Great big fruit but shows well without any heat at a whopping 15.2%. Still nice and dense and brooding.
Enjoyable to drink. Don't need to think too much about it but still complex and showing nice acid.
Red
2010 Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley
91 points
Taste at the winery.
Classic Napa nose. Dark cherry, leather, coffee and cigar. Some dark spice and dark stone fruit too.
Young nose. Some chalky qualities on the palate but royal and elegant.
Caressing and not too hot but stiff. Needs a year or so to settle down or at least a good decant.
Red
2009 Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection USA, California, Napa Valley
92 points
Darker liqueur styling overall. Really young and tight now.
Big and just not showing the best finesse or balance at this time.
Some promise to open up, but I wouldn't drink this now.
Lots of sweet baking spice, sweeter milk chocolate and nuts.
Big on the nose and some port qualities. Richer and massive now.
Little lower acid with big tannins and lots of alcohol. Not necessarily hot, just chewy.
1 person found this helpful Comment

Flight 6 (8 notes)

White
2011 Jemrose Viognier Egret Pond USA, California, Sonoma County, Bennett Valley
91 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery.
White peach, pear, flowers. Touch of honey. Gorgeous mouth feel with some fuzzy tangerine.
Caressing and really nice. Medium body but still light on its feet. Perfume nose. Really pretty.
White
2009 Wren Hop Chardonnay Shipwreck Savior Gaps Crown and Tin Cross USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
92 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery. 202 cases.
Soft vanilla cream. Touch of baking spice. High toned.
Moderate full body with a nice mouth feel again. Really well made.
Red
2009 Wren Hop Pinot Noir Siren's Lure USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
91 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery.
Funky, lighter body. Cranberry, raspberry, ocean breeze. Nice funky and damp earth. Palate is richer.
Awesome mid palate. Structure and forceful but still lighter. Masculine.
Red
2009 Wren Hop Pinot Noir Omens & Prophecy USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
93 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery.
Best Pinot of the group.
Lots of earth and expression. Still piney and nice caramel nutty action.
Concentrated fruit with a rich mouth feel but thinner on the back end with higher acid.
Elegant and finesse.
Red
2011 Bevan Cellars Merlot Tench Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
93 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery. Barrel Sample.
Elegant nose. Blackberry, cassis, roast nuts. Meaty, smoky but so so clean.
Pure and fresh on the palate. Great tannin structure but so clean once again.
Good grip and mouth feel. Should just use this as a single vineyard as they may blend it.
Elegance finesse. Mint, menthol and licorice on the back end. Fantastic. No rough edges.
Red
2011 Bevan Cellars Syrah Moaveni Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
94 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery. Barrel sample.
While this will be blended to form their Syrah, I believe this would stand so well as a single vineyard. What a unique site!
So much in my style. Savory, meaty and bloody. Alban clones were used, and you can tell BIG TIME!
Unreal nose. So good. So rich. Meaty and saucy rustic berries.
Palate is super. So fantastic and elegant. Feminine but powerful and understated.
Wine of the trip so far. So smooth and so young but so so so right in every way.
I'd drink this today but it WILL improve greatly with age if you can believe it.
Red
2010 Bevan Cellars Ontogeny USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
92 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery.
Cab Franc and Merlot.
Chocolatey, rich and extracted. Supple and smooth. Really fruit driven but softer mouth feel.
Great finesse and coconut action with some nice floral notes.
Violets and great smooth moderate grip. Drinking well in its youth.
Red
2010 Bevan Cellars EE Cuvée Showket Vineyards USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
93 points
Taste with Victoria Bevan at the winery. 50% Cab Franc 50% Cab Sauv.
Little savory notes. Very royal and well made.
Leather, cigar box. Bordeaux on steroids.
Caramel, nutty, figs, rock. Black flowers. Nice heat and grip.

Flight 7 (7 notes)

White
2010 Kosta Browne Chardonnay One Sixteen USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
92 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne.
Honeyed pear and lemons and banana. Lots of minerals, chalky and pure with focus.
Great balance. Long finish and really really nice. Understated. Great wine.
Red
2010 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast
93 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne.
So smooth. Earthy, funky but smooth. Great strawberry essence. Limited notes.
Red
2010 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Russian River Valley USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
92 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne.
Spicier, flora but really really spice driven.
Red
2010 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Lucia Highlands
93 points
Pomegranate and really funky. Best of the regular AVA wines from Kosta. Fantastic styling.
Red
2010 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Keefer Ranch Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
94 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne.
So lush and nutty. A little smoky and a touch of beef jerky.
Great length and robust action. Right in your face. Loved it.
Red
2010 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Koplen Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
94 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne.
Much bigger and fruit driven with lots of layered complex baking spice.
The palate is super lush and thick. SO much going on. This wine is a beast. Let it settle for a year or two.
Red
2011 Cirq Pinot Noir Treehouse Vineyard USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
94 points
Private tour and tasting with Michael Browne. Special Barrel Sample taste intended for James Laube the following day!
Limited notes, but this wine is extraordinary. Robust and bold with luxurious Russian River finesse. I can sense some KB styling but it's different, more refined and elegant.
Aromatically the juice is rustic and earth driven with a strong backbone indicating this will live for a few decades with ease.
Cannot WAIT to get my hands on a bottle or two of this. Worth the wait and the coin - I can tell that already.
2 people found this helpful Comments (1)

Flight 8 (6 notes)

White
2010 Far Niente Chardonnay USA, California, Napa Valley
90 points
Executive luncheon at the winery.
Crisp, butter and oak. Yellow fruit. Balanced big palate. Good acidity. Great wine for passed pizzas and apps.
White
2009 Far Niente Chardonnay USA, California, Napa Valley
91 points
Executive luncheon at the winery.
Light peach and nectarine. Finesse and less oak then the 2010 - enjoyed a bit more.
Good fruit showing and more understated.
White - Sweet/Dessert
2006 Dolce Winery Late Harvest USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Executive luncheon at the winery.
Light and rich rich flavor. Vibrant. Yellow fruit, honey, nutty and some serious cream soda.
So balanced and so delicious. Such a great wine every vintage. This stuff can age for decades with ease.
I'd love to try an older vintage.
Red
2009 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
92 points
Executive luncheon at the winery.
Big in your face fruit. Plum, dark chocolate, leather. Very fresh.
Voluptuous big berry rush with some nice oak and cedar. Baking spice notes are gorgeous.
Great finish with a touch of heat. Needs a few years on its side but this should come into its own.
Red
2005 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
93 points
Executive luncheon at the winery.
Softer aroma. More Bordeaux like than the '09. Still big and bold but restrained. Palate is bigger than the nose.
Smooth finish. Milk chocolate city. Like a river.
White - Sweet/Dessert
1998 Dolce Winery Late Harvest USA, California, Napa Valley
94 points
Oh my goodness. Just as I wished I could try an older vintage of Dolce, one was served with our dessert.
Funk some nuts and orange fruit - dried apricot and stewed orange stew. So unique. Showing a touch of age. I'd love to try one of these thirty years down the line.

Flight 9 (1 note)

Red
2009 Continuum Proprietary Red USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Private tour and tasting at Continuum with Stu Harrison and Tim Mondavi! What! SO cool!
The wine was elegant, complex, well layered with fruit, earth, spice and loads of unique minerality.
The nose soared across the room from the glass. Silky cassis, black olive, roasted dark nuts, fig.
Rocky black volcanic rock notes along with beautiful oak.
A complete wine with well polished tannins. Though it's still so young this will be remarkable down the road.
I implore you to get a bottle of this for a special occasion or just to share with someone who will appreciate this excellent juice.

Flight 10 (6 notes)

Red
2010 Pride Mountain Vineyards Syrah USA, California, Sonoma County
89 points
Taste at the winery.
Dark black fruit espresso and dark chocolate. Palate isn't overdone. Decent, just not worth the price in this case.
White
2011 Pride Mountain Vineyards Viognier USA, California, Sonoma County
89 points
Taste at the winery.
Bright toned fruit. Some austere minerals.
Red
2011 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Franc USA, California, Sonoma County
92 points
Taste at the winery. Barrel Sample from within the caves drawn before our eyes.
Exotic blueberries, baking spices. Touch of herbs. Elegant and supple. Blue flowers.
Restrained and drinkable. Really really clean. Delicious.
Red
2010 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Franc USA, California, Sonoma County
92 points
Taste at the winery.
Soft cranberry, old leather. Young. Subtle iron core.
Spice but sweet. Touch of grip.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2009 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon USA, California, Napa Valley
90 points
Taste at the winery.
Dark blueberry, cherry, sandalwood, cedar. Soft, nutmeg, cinnamon palate.
Red
2009 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve USA, California, Napa Valley
93 points
Taste at the winery.
Red flowers and violets. Soft tomato notes - not stewed but fresh in this case - unique.
Great finesse. Lovely mouth feel. Layered, rich and big structured but red fruit all day long.
Great balance and long finish.