Barra of Mendocino Shines Again

4:26 pm Gems in MY Glass . . ., Mendocino, Tasting Notes

Tasting newly released Barra of Mendocino wines had me reminiscing back to the day I first met (the late) Charlie and his wife Martha Barra well over a decade ago. Following in the footsteps of his father and maternal grandfather, Charlie began cultivating vineyards here in the 1940s. He was among the early leaders (if not the first) to practice organic grapegrowing in Mendocino County. He and his family began farming organically more than fifty years ago, and Barra has been Certified Organic for more than 30 years; impressive!

I recall my very first impression of their wines, each one was remarkable, and also reasonably priced. Tasting the following wines this month confirms that the Barra team continues to produce skillfully crafted wines, with an excellent quality to price ratio.  I appreciate their striking, classy new label, too. Martha, daughter Shelley, son Shawn, and Director of Winemaking Randy Meyer carry on Charlie’s legacy today.

2020 Reserve Zinfandel:  The tantalizing spicy, berry aroma is divine.  The decadent palate coats the mouth with flavors of a spice-accented olallieberry pie melding deliciously with notes of black raspberry jam, succulent tayberries, licorice, a whisper of vanilla bean, and well-integrated oak.  Bright, lively and immaculately balanced through the persistent finish, where a subtle tinge of mint peeks through.  SRP: $26

2021 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon:  Black fruits and a touch of cinnamon on the nose start the juices flowing with this well-structured Cabernet Sauvignon.  Black plum, savory elements, black currants, tobacco, anise seed, and leather comingle with notes of pleasing barrel spice.  Rich while beautifully balanced with firm tannins and a velvety texture, and the finish keeps on delivering long after the last sip.  Approachable now and promises continued  enjoyment ahead.  SRP: $28

2020 Reserve Petite Sirah:  A lovely aromatic of grilled plum and florality greets the nose.  The palate is juicy and mouthfilling as blackberries, dark chocolate covered cherries, blueberry coulis, earthy notes and fresh ground black pepper swirl in harmony.  Bold and expressive with a fine backbone of tannins and complementary acidity ideally balancing the deep fruit, and the lip-smacking finish is precise and long-lasting.  SRP: $28

The Barra tasting room is located in the heart of Mendocino County at 7051 North State Street, Redwood Valley, California.  It is open daily, other than major holidays (New Years Day, Christmas Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Easter Sunday).  More detail can be found at www.barraofmendocino.com.  Plan your visit soon, you’ll be glad you did! 

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