Another solid effort from Ron Rubin Winery who specializes in unoaked varietal wines (Ron's wife prefers her wine unoaked). This is inexpensive and a great value. Golden in color, clear and bright. The nose is nice with Meyer Lemons, some grapefruit and a bit of minerality. Medium bodied. Good acidity. On the palate, the Meyer Lemons come thru with a slight touch of lemon-lime. Good finish. This drinks easily on its own and will work well with lighter foods. This would be nice with fried appetizers at a party or on the back deck. Drink over the next few years.
2019 Dutcher Crossing Chardonnay Costello Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Alexander Valley, Wine Review
This is a very nice Sonoma County Chardonnay. Light golden in color, clear and bright. The nose is great with lemons, green apples, slight vanilla, light toast, and slight buttery note. Full bodied. Crisp acidity. On the palate, lots of yellow grapefruit notes with some vanilla. Plenty of depth. Long finish. This drinks great on its own but will work well with sea food or vegetarian dishes. Drink over the next eight to ten years.
This is a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Syrah from Sonoma County. Purple in color, opaque and bright. The nose is nice with black cherries, black raspberries, slight vanilla, spice, leather and char. Full bodied. Medium tannins. On the palate, this took about 30 minutes to open and then drank quite well. Nice black cherry fruit with some black raspberries along with a bit if spice and slight cedar note. There is some depth as it opens in the glass. Nice finish. This drinks well on its own and will work well with meats and chicken. It went well with a Veggie Burger. Drin
Small lot Chardonnay. Not many people take the time to create small batches of wine, but Cuvaison does and it opens the door into wines that are specially cared for and you can taste that. This Chardonnay is a shy, subtle Chardonnay, and even though winemaker Steve Rogstag says it’s an “iconic California style,” it’s really more a respectful nod to Burgundy. Yes, this is 100% Chardonnay, aged in both French and American oak for 18 months, with full malolactic fermentation, but the acidity and light flavors veer away from California to France.
The devil is in the details and with Cuviason’s Diablo Syrah, the details are key to an exceptional wine. Syrah often is mis-treated and most Syrahs on the market are fairly benign. But winemaker Steve Rogstad coaxes much out of these 21-year-old vines grown is less than optimal soils. A smooth viscosity leads to plum, huckleberry, black cherry, red currant, and light pomegranate notes, with back notes of young tobacco leaf and new leather. This is not a timid wine, but a sensuous one that is definitely meant to work with food, as it’s a little heavier on the alcohol.
Though Cuvaison is best known for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, they have an impressive overall portfolio of wine that often doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Case in point, their 2019 Merlot is nothing short of outstanding. This is a medium bodied wine that drinks like a full-bodied wine with lots of swagger. Black cherry notes dominate along with plum, blackberry, light blueberry, cocoa powder and fresh sawed cedar wood. This is 100% Merlot and shows that with excellent fruit, you can make a Merlot that doesn’t need the addition of other grapes to make it better.
This is Cab Franc from Uruguay! Purple/ruby in color, mostly clear and bright. The nose has cherries, bell peppers, tobacco and slight chocolate. Medium bodied. Light to medium tannins. Lovely texture. On the palate, this has juicy acidity. Black cherry fruit with underlying char. Long finish. Blind, I would have guessed it from the Loire Valley. Drinking well now, it should continue for another eight to ten years. Nice on its own but better with food. This would be a perfect wine with (Veggie) Burgers off the grill.
This is a blend of 50% Tannat 30% Merlot and 20% Tempranillo. Purple in color with ruby hues, mostly opaque and bright. The nose has cherries, black cherries, plums, chocolate and spice. Medium tannins. Full bodied. On the palate, this drinks like a bold, young Bordeaux (which is a compliment). Cherries, black cherries, cinnamon, and plums. There is a nice complexity. Its is drinking well but may still improve. Either way, it should drink well for the next ten to fifteen years. It drinks well on its own and will work well with roasted meats and vegetables.
This is 100% Tannat. Purple in color, ruby at the rim, mostly opaque and bright. The nose is great with cherries, dust, chocolate, spice and a hint of toasted oak. Medium tannins. Medium to full bodied. On the palate, plums and black raspberries. Moderate acidity. This is very tasty. Nice finish. Drinking well now and should continue for another twelve to fifteen years. Nice on its own but better with food. This would work well with Lamb Chops. An excellent value!
This is an intriguing blend of 85% Tannat and 15% Viognier. Garnet in color, mostly clear and bright. The nose is nice with chocolate, cherries, and a slight coconut note. Medium to firm tannins. Full bodied. Juicy acidity. On the palate, cherries and other red fruits. Moderate finish. This is drinking well now and should drink well for another five to eight years. This works better with food. It would go well with roasted duck or chicken.