2013 Halcon Vineyards Petite Sirah Tierra Theopolis Vineyard, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

This is one of my favorite Petite Sirahs out there.  At age 7, this is still a youngster, but it is delicious.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has boysenberries, char and spice.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this is intense.  Lots of precision.  Very deep.  Boysenberries over a char base.  Great balance.  Delicious.  Long finish.  Great value, too!  This should drink well for another ten to fifteen years, but it is so good now.  Works great on its own or with spicy foods or fatty foods.  

2012 Roederer Estate L'Ermitage Brut, USA, California, Mendocino, Anderson Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

This is a sparkling wine from northern California.  Light golden in color with a lot of very small bubbles.  The nose is interesting with ginger, figs, toasted nuts, and nutmeg.  Full bodied.  Crisp.  On the palate, notes of figs and red apples.  Some ginger.  The finish is very long.  This is very lively.  It should continue to drink well for another five to seven years before slowly turning into a mature sparkling wine.  This will pair well with almost any food or on its own.  

2019 Bonterra Vineyards Rosé, USA, California, Mendocino, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$16.00USD

Bonterra uses organically grown grapes to make their wines.  The wines are very good to great and priced reasonably.  Their Rosé is always a favorite.  As Memorial Day approaches, this year will be a bit different with Social Distancing still appropriate.  Finally, however, we had a nice weather day, and it was a great time to try the latest vintage.  The wine is screw topped which is a great thing.  This vine is mostly Grenache.  It will keep the wine fresher.  It has a very pretty color.  Sort of a deep, ruby/pink in color.  Clear and bright.  Upon opening, notes of Rhubarb with some cher

2016 Fairway & Vines Ben Curtis Cuvee Red Wine Blend Mendocino, USA, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

This is the second vintage for a Red Wine Blend and I far prefer this to the 2015 version.  it is a blend of 42% Zinfandel, 21% Petite Sirah, 19% "Port Grapes, and 18% Syrah.  Yes, Port wine grapes can be a wide variety but I have no idea what they used and that the grapes are from Mendocino.  But, for $20 retail, no need to get hung up on that.  Right now it seems the Zinfandel and to a lesser extent the Syrah dominate the blend although that might change with time.  It is made by Rich Parducci.  This utilizes a cork (unlike the Chardonnay)  Ruby in color with purple swirls.  The nose has

2012 Halcon Vineyards Esquisto, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$27.00USD

This is a blend of 65% Grenache, 30% Mourvedre and 5% Syrah.  Purple in color.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries and plums along with some spice and earthy funk.  On the palate, this is complex.  Layers of black cherries and black raspberries with damp earthiness.  Good acidity.  Long finish.  This is drinking very well right now.  It should be at this level for another five to ten years.  It goes well with roasts and casseroles.  

2016 Halcon Vineyards Esquisto, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

This is a GSM blend of 70/10/20.  Still young, it needs some time, especially for the Syrah and Mourvedre to come out.  Ruby in color, slightly cloudy.  The nose has black cherries and baking spices.  On the palate, this is more raspberries but the baking spice are present.  Smooth and easy drinking but also some depth.  Medium bodied.  Good acidity.  Needs a few years and should have a decade more.  Will work on its own and worked great with a stuffed eggplant dish but roasted foods in general.  

2011 Halcon Vineyards Syrah Alturas, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

This was in magnum and opened to celebrate the engagement of our friends daughter.  The non-wine geek crowd seemed to really enjoy it (as did the wine geeks present).  Purple in color.  The nose has boysenberries, some black pepper and slight bacon fat.  On the palate, this has a wonderful texture.  Juicy, slick and medium to full bodied.  Plenty of boysenberry fruit over a bit of char and slight dry earthiness.  Good balance.  Nice finish.  This is coming around now and just about at peak.  Even in 750ml format there is no hurry though, this should have another decade.  It will go well wit

2014 SonkinCellars Unmasked, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$53.00USD

Disclaimer - biased wine review.  This may be the best wine we ever made.  It is still young and tight and should improve over the next five to seven years.  It is made entirely with Halcon fruit.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has boysenberries, black pepper, slight baking spices, slight earthiness and roasted herbs.  On the palate, I love the texture of this wine.  Deep if still tightly layered.  The biggest difference between this and other Halcon based wines, is that this is a bit riper.  Juicy boysenberry fruit over and bit of char and minerals.  Long finish.  Good acidity.  This sho

2012 SonkinCellars Unmasked, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$45.00USD

This vintage seemed so open at first but eventually got tight.  This took some air/time to open up once the cork was popped.  Purple in color.  The nose is nice with boysenberries, charcoal, black pepper and just a bit of tobacco.  On the palate, this has a nice texture.  Lots of boysenberry fruit but tightly packed.  A nice backbone of acidity.  Good finish.  It is a cooler climate Syrah and Halcon takes a while to mature.  It still needs another three to five years and should be good for a decade or  more after that.  Disclaimer, I was part of the team that made this wine so I may be a li

2016 Halcon Vineyards Syrah Alturas, USA, California, Mendocino, Yorkville Highlands, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$33.00USD

Halcon wines are some of the best values in California wine.  They are top quality cooler climate Syrahs being made at lower alcohol levels in a deliberate style.  At the same time, they are not short on fruit or deliciousness.  They really do take some time to develop though and cellaring or air is highly recommended.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has boysenberries, slight black pepper, slight fried bacon, and a bit of charred earth.  On the palate, this has a medium body.  Tightly layered, it unwinds in the glass.  Nice boysenberry fruit with an underlying minerality.  It s

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