2016 Carlisle Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+

What a great showing for this wine.  Gorgeous.  Purple in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, char, bramble and baking spices.  Full bodied.  Lush and luxurious texture.  Lots of energy though.  It drinks (too) easily.  Delicious but also has a depth and complexity.  Lots of black cherries, black raspberries and black pepper on the palate.  Long finish.  This should continue to drink well for ten years at least but it will lose its vibrancy and be replaced with more complexity.  It would be a shame to miss it now.  It will work great with grille

2017 Gundlach Bundschu Tempranillo Estate Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

There are not a lot of Tempranillo's grown outside Spain and few in California, so it's always a pleasure to get to try one.  I suspect they have a small plot for this to experiment with and bottle it as a winery only release (just a guess).  It is 90% Tempranillo, 6% Malbec, and 1% Petit Verdot.  Ruby in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has cherries and baking spices with a bit of tea leaves and slight smoke.  On the palate, this is full bodied.  Bold cherry fruit with light tannins and underlying roasted herbs.  There is little acidity or depth making me wonder how this might age

2015 Gundlach Bundschu Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Sonoma Valley, Wine Review Valley

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$42.00USD

A very pretty, classically styled Sonoma Cabernet.  This is a blend of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot, 3% Malbec, and 2% Merlot.  Purple in color with some purple swirls.  The nose has cassis, black cherries, tobacco, slight bell pepper and spice.  On the palate, this is full bodied with medium tannins.  Cassis with a nice underlying earthiness/forest floor.  Good balance.  Ripe but not over blown by any means.  This should drink well for the next fifteen years as it develops and matures.  Drinking great on its own, this will work well with roasts or casseroles.  

2016 Rivers-Marie Chardonnay Joy Road Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$75.00USD

This is drinking very well right now.  Light golden in color.  The nose has lemon cream, brioche and slight orange/citrus.  Very nice.  Also just a bit of baking spices.  On the palate, this is full bodied.  Still showing some oak that will integrate with further ageing.  Delicious.  Flavors of orange creamsicle and baking spices.  Great energy and precision.  Long finish.  This worked well with a vegetarian lasagna in bechamel sauce but will work with most seafood or fowl dishes.  it may yet improve a bit but should be great drinking for the next ten to fifteen years.  

2016 Gundlach Bundschu Gewürztraminer Estate Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

An interesting take of Gewurtz.  Very different from the Alsatian counterparts.  Light golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose has no lychee at all which is fine just a bit surprising.  It does have a floral quality to it, along with ginger and a strong mineral base.  Very nice.  On the palate, this is medium bodied.  It is dry as a bone.  The minerality comes thru along with a granny smith apple note and a bit of orange peel.  Clean finish with no bitterness.  Overall, it is a very nice wine that worked excellently with a butternut squash soup.  It probably should be consumed in the n

2017 Once & Future Wine Zinfandel Frank's Block Teldeschi Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

This project of Joel Petterson has been at it for a while now and the wines are getting a certain style to them which is very nice.  That is, robust, but just barely (for Zin).  This wine is  80% Zinfandel with the rest Alicante and old-vine Carignan.   Purple in color with ruby swirls.  Mostly clear and bright.  The nose has black cherries, raspberries, roasted herbs (sage?), and dust.  Medium bodied with light tannins.  On the palate, this is delicious.  It drinks easy.  Raspberry fruit with some underlying black pepper and bramble.  Good energy.  Nice finish.  This should drink at this l

2017 Dry Creek Vineyard Zinfandel Heritage Vines, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$15.00USD

This is a solid wine and a nice value in Sonoma Zinfandel.  A blend of 77% Zinfandel, 21% Petit Verdot & 2% Carignane.   Ruby in color with purple swirls.  The nose has raspberries, spice and dust.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, this is slightly brawny with red fruits.  Easy drinking.  Light tannins.  Best to drink now or in the next few years.  Works well with pizza or burgers.  A nice wine for a party.  Shop around as its MSRP is $26 but its widely available ranging from $15 and up.  

2009 Bedrock Wine Co. Syrah Griffin's Lair, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$43.00USD

This is drinking quite well now.  A great example of a cooler climate Syrah from California.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, black pepper, and slight bacon fat.  On the palate, this is very concentrated.  Boysenberry fruit with char underneath and a slightly meaty taste.  Medium to full bodied.  A wisp of tannins.  Nice acidity.  Long finish.  This is great with roasted veggies (and would be with meat or fowl) and would also work with Indian food.  No hurry, this should be good for another seen to ten years.  

1999 Vérité La Joie, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1999
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$150.00USD

This was purchased by me on release back when it was merely expensive.  Today, this is one of the top guns of the Kendal Jackson empire and the pricing has gotten prohibitive for the newer releases.  If trying this blind, a good guess might have been a 1999 Bordeaux, maybe Graves or maybe even 1998.  it was quite good and certainly just about at peak.  A 60/40 blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.  Purple/ruby in color with just a hint of browning at the rim.  The nose has some brett but plenty of cassis, cherries and an earthy funk too.  On the palate, this is complex.  Layers of fruit (

2012 Carlisle Syrah Papa's Block, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$60.00USD

This is one of the best Syrah's out of Sonoma County.  It is built for the long haul so make sure to let it rest in the cellar or give it plenty of air.  Purple in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, roasted meats and slight root beer note which was interesting.  Full bodied.  On the palate, lots of black raspberry fruit starting to layer with a charred earthiness and slight bacon notes.  This still has medium tannins.  Great balance and energy.  Long finish.  This may yet improve, but is more likely about as good as it will get.  No hurry, this

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