Gems in My Glass . . . August 2009

Gems in MY Glass . . ., Tasting Notes

Mara 2007 Russian River Valley Laughlin Road Ranch Pinot Noir:    Seductive, inviting aromatics and are just a hint of what’s to come in this handsomely structured Pinot Noir.   Layered and complex with wild cherry fruit, plenty of spice and enticing minerality that glide seamlessly across the palate.   Judicious use of French oak adds another dimension to this classy, food friendly wine.   Showing well now, and count on this beauty to evolve gracefully like a well aged Burgundy; if you can manage to wait!

Campos de Luz 2008:  Aromas of delicate white flowers greet the nose, followed by a burst of freshly squeezed lime and lemon zest that persists on the palate.  This creative blend of Chardonnay, Viura (Macabeo) and Muscat from Spain is refreshing with lively acidity and a bright, clean finish.

Duckhorn Vineyards 2006 Rector Creek Vineyard Merlot:   Swirl, sniff and linger over the glass; this complex Merlot from its rocky soil is not to be rushed.    Dense, spice laden blueberry and cherry compote fills the nose and carries through on the palate with a decadent thread of dark chocolate.  The finely grained tannins and rich, velvety texture coat the mouth delectably, and the finish lasts forever. 

Duckhorn Vineyards 2005 Patzimaro Cabernet Sauvignon:  A plethora of herbs and spices on the nose accent the dense cassis and dark berry fruit deliciously.   Intensely structured and layered with a firm backbone and plenty of grip, this complex Cab explodes on the palate with tobacco, spice and provocative fruit intertwining with aplomb, and finishes with elegance. 

Chateau Montelena 2007 Napa Valley Chardonnay:  Perfect companion for seafood, this lean impressive Chardonnay (with no malolactic fermentation) boasts juicy green apple, crisp pear, fresh herbs and citrus notes alongside a touch of nicely integrated oak and stony minerality.  You’ll want to keep coming back for more.

Chateau Montelena 2002 Estate Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon:   This structured Cab with a touch of Cab Franc is intense and muscular yet has plenty of finesse.   Aromas of dark berry fruit, tobacco and earthiness rise from the glass and lead to a mouthful of cassis, black cherry, licorice, pipe tobacco spices, herbs and a dollop of cedar.   Smooth, rich and full bodied, with an impressive purity of fruit and a finish that persists memorably.

LaZarre 2007 Central Coast Pinot Noir:   Alluring mushroom, vibrant cherry and forest floor nuances on the nose make a perfect entry to the black cherry, raspberry and herbaceous notes filling the palate.  Medium bodied with well integrated silky tannins and toasty oak accents, this Pinot Noir is well balanced and stylish from start to lip smacking finish.