2/16/2016

Chardonnay Flight: Marchesi de' Frescobaldi, La Rochelle Wine, and Broadside Wines

Hello Friends,

Just about every day, as wine o'clock approaches, you can find me uncorking or unscrewing a new wine adventure. Being a wine enthusiast, a wine blogger, and someone who appreciates the liquid expression of place, a person’s vision, and Mother Nature’s influence -- I find wine to be one of the most intriguing beverages out there. It is an area of interest that you never run out of new things to taste and learn.


The wines selected for this post are all bright and expressive selections made from the Chardonnay grape. Chardonnay is one of the most widely planted varieties in the world due to its ability to thrive in a wide range of soils and climates. Chardonnay does quite well in stainless steel but also has a wonderful affinity for oak barrels. At its best, it is a white wine that is both drinkable and age worthy; developing further complexities and fully integrating with time in the bottle (and proper storage). With so many styles of Chardonnay available, there’s no reason to ever become a member of the “Anything But Chardonnay” (ABC) club. But if for some odd reason you are a member, any one of these Chardonnays is a good ticket out. For further information and where you can find these wines, see my tasting notes below.


Marchesi de' Frescobaldi 2012 Pomino Benefizio Riserva (SRP $36): I usually don’t look to Tuscany to satisfy my Chardonnay needs, but that may change soon. Chardonnay is no stranger to Tuscany, and in fact, thrives in the region’s high hills. Cuttings were first planted to the high-elevation Castello di Pomino estate in 1855 by Frescobaldi ancestor Vittorio degli Albizi. This aromatic example is drop-dead gorgeous. It offers the best of all worlds in Chardonnay: brilliant acidity, lovely purity, wonderful richness, and length. Medium-bodied and nicely textured, an appealing cascade of ripe yellow fleshed fruit and mature tree fruit flavors combine with notes of floral perfume and spiced oak flavors and wrap around a concentrated core of vibrant acidity. The finish is medium-long, juicy and bright; a wonderful sipper for sure. Serve between 55-60 degrees. Region: Pomino, Tuscany, Italy. Other info: ABV 13%, matured 10 months in French oak barrels – 50 new and 50% one-time used, matured additional four months in bottle, cork enclosure. Click here to find this wine.


La Rochelle Wine Dutton Ranch-Morelli Lane Vineyard 2011 Chardonnay (SRP $65): La Rochelle Winery specializes in small-production, single vineyard Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines from some of California’s top sites. The fruit for this Chardonnay was sourced from Morelli Lane Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. Yellow-gold in color, this wine is attractively textured with a bracing acidity, which nicely balances the rich array of orchard fruit, lemon curd, and tropical-tinged flavors. There are delicate nuances of brioche and mineral that melds into the lively and long, fruit-forward finish. Enjoy on its own or with grilled salmon, rotisserie chicken, or pasta topped with a white wine cream sauce. Only 91 cases of this wine were produced. Region: Russian River Valley, California. Other info: ABV 14.2%, 15 months maturation in French oak – 50% new, 50% second use, cork enclosure. Click here to find this wine.


Broadside Wines 2014 Wild Ferment Chardonnay (SRP $20): Broadside is a label operated by Paso couple Brian and Stephy Terrizzi. Their focus is on varietal purity and vineyard expression through native ferments, non-interventionist winemaking, and the use of mostly neutral oak barrels. This delightful Chardonnay is sourced from San Luis Obispo and is a pleasant sipper and wonderful food wine. It’s slender yet nicely textured, with fresh aromas and flavors suggestive of pear, tropical fruits, hints of nectarine, and appealing nuances of honeysuckle. The wine’s bright, palate-freshening acidity makes it a perfect match for lighter fare and seafood dishes. Region: Edna Valley, San Luis Obispo County, California. Other info: ABV 13.5%, native yeast fermentation, no adjustments or additions, 10% neutral French oak fermentation, screw cap enclosure. Click here to find this wine.


Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned ...more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: These wines were provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

2/08/2016

Quick Sip: Clos de La Tech Domaine Lois Louise Estate 2009 Pinot Noir

Hello Friends,

Today’s Quick Sip is the 2009 Domaine Lois Louise Estate 2009 Pinot Noir from Clos de La Tech. Situated in the cool-climate, high-elevation Santa Cruz Mountains appellation, Clos de La Tech specializes in crafting small lots of high altitude, single-vineyard Pinot Noir. Their mission, simply put, is – “to make the New World's best Pinot Noir.” Founded in 1994 by T.J. Rodgers, CEO of Cypress Semiconductor, and his wife, Valeta, the company’s silicon chips are featured on the crest of select bottles.

Clos de La Tech wines are produced from three distinct estate vineyards. Their Domaine Lois Louise estate, named after Mr. Rodgers’ mother, is a 163 acre, steep-slope site reaching 1,700 feet, with 35 acres planted. The vines are naturally low-yielding (i.e., below one ton per acre) and so steep that a one-of-a-kind, specially designed tractor moved by cables is required for farming.

A glimpse of the picturesque Domaine Lois Louise Estate

A state-of-the-art gravity-flow winery is built into the steep hillside of the Domaine Lois Louise property, so there is no need for pumps. The wines are foot-crushed, whole-cluster pressed, fermented with wild yeasts, unfiltered, matured 18 months in French oak barrels, of which 75% is new, and aged another two and a half years in bottle prior to release. Clos de La Tech’s disciplined attention to detail and focus from ground to bottle is reflected in the glass. I recommend that my many Pinot-loving readers put this producer on their wine radar. For further information and where you can find this wine, please see my tasting notes below.

Clos de La Tech Domaine Lois Louise Estate 2009 Pinot Noir

Clos de La Tech Domaine Lois Louise Estate 2009 Pinot Noir (SRP $42): This Pinot Noir pours a deep ruby-purple color. It is immensely aromatic, with cascades of well-ripened black cherries, blueberries, and plum flavors framed by spice cake, mineral traces, and dried rose petals. The palate is vibrant, textured, and concentrated, with a generous mid-palate, balanced by ripe tannins, particularly on the back-end, and a firm acid structure. The finish is fruit-driven and medium-long with a pleasant freshness. A pleasure to sip on its own and even better with a satisfying meal; I enjoyed a glass with grilled lamb chops. I recommend decanting this Pinot Noir for around 30 minutes before serving; over time it opens beautifully. Approximately 488 cases of this wine were produced. Region: Santa Cruz Mountains, California. Other info: ABV 14.1%, matured 18 months in François Frères French oak barrels, cork enclosure. Click here to find this wine.

Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned ...more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: This wine was provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

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