2007 Hannah Nicole Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon

2007 Hannah Nicole Vineyards Cabernet SauvignonPrice: $26.00 via Hannah Nicole Vineyards

What They Said:

Per Hannah Nicole Vineyards “Our 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon boasts aromas of pepper and plum, with hints of smoked toasted
walnuts and fine leather. The finish coats your palate with fine tannins that linger, a taste which will hunger you for a fine cut of choice beef, a perfect accompaniment to this luscious Cabernet Sauvignon”

What I Think:

(13.8%) 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot – A touch green (olives) initially with nice berries, baking spice on chocolate on the nose. Lively on the palate with plum and black pepper flavors. The acidity keep this medium bodied (and very food friendly) before the barrel creaminess kicks in on finish that dries out as it lingers with lasting tannins. For those that like “big” Cabs you might not find this ripe enough or lush enough. That said I found the fruit flavors nice and balanced without being over the top big. My tip? Be sure to open and decant this a few hours before you intend to enjoy.

Wine Geek Notes: 900 cases made; aged for 30 months in new and one year old oak (French & American)

Rating: Nice but… (while enjoyable there are others I prefer at $26 like the Broadside Cabernet)

2000 Jade Mountain Mourvedre

2000 Jade Mountain MourvedrePrice: $16.99 @ BevMo

What They Said:

Per the winery (pdf) “The old vines, combined with low yields of two tons per acre, transform this normally rustic red grape into a fine complex red wine that is both hearty and satisfying. Mourvèdre is broadly planted in the famed Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation in the southern Rhône valley, but it is seldom bottled as a single variety. Its characteristic aromas of pepper, spice and sweet tobacco are mixed with raspberry and blackberry fruit that linger on the palate. The wine’s dense flavor and silky tannin make it versatile for food pairing. The 2000 vintage shows great concentration and is meant for the richest foods of Southern France and the Mediterranean. Mourvèdre is a perfect partner for leg of lamb, Mediterranean beef stew, pasta primavera, and grilled fish, such as sea bass. In warm weather, chill this wine to 50 degrees and serve it with summer barbecue to enjoy its complex, delicious fruit flavors. Optimum time for consumption 2002—2012″

What I Think:

I’ve had this one since almost the beginning of time, my wine drinking time that is. One of my early splurges which I have looked at year after year. For those that may not be familiar with Mourvedre it most commonly appears in Rhone blends along with Grenache and Syrah. Until I took a look at the pdf I tracked down I had forgotten that Jade Mountain was part of the much larger Chalone Wine Group.

Not sure why it lasted so long nor why I decided to open it this given night but I am very thankful I did. The nose was subdued seeming a bit smoky and warm. It hits heavy at the front of the palate, seems almost inky and shadows the presence of dark purple fruit. The flavors turn to dark berries (blackberry and boysenberry) and towards the end of palate the wine turns slightly chewy leading to a great tangy, nice tannic finish. This was much richer and deeper that I would have initially thought. A very complex powering that doesn’t over power, certainly leaning towards the old world in style. I’m a fan. I’m also looking to try a few more of Jade’s offerings, I asked for tips on twitter and @JugShop recommended the La Provencale. Anyone here have tips for me? As for this one is an early wine of the year favorite and could start a Mourvedre buying and drinking run… Anyone want to come along for the ride?

Rating: Wow!

2004 Rosenblum “Heritage Clone” San Francisco Bay Petite Sirah

Price: $14.99 direct from the winery

What They Said:

Per K&L Wines 92 points Robert Parker: “There are nearly 10,000 cases of the stunning 2004 Petite Sirah Heritage Clone. A dense ruby/purple hue is accompanied by glorious aromas of creme de cassis, vanilla, incense, crushed rocks, blackberries, and smoke. It is a full-bodied, tannic, chewy, rich, pedal-to-the-metal effort with low acidity as well as ripe tannin. The latter two components will make it difficult to resist, but it should age well for 15-20 years.” (08/06)

What I Think:

First off, I apologize for the time between posts. The good news is that I haven’t stopped drinking so there is a backlog that I will try to empty as quickly as possible. Given that, my notes on some may be briefer than normal so bear with me. Now to the wine…

My brother-in-law from Germany came over a few weeks ago for desert. He enjoys wine and even owns a portion of a vineyard in his home country. As I mentioned when tasting the 2005 version of this wine I have almost 3 cases of it in the cellar. Given that I was so impressed I figured it would have half a shot of doing the same with him.

This wine is big, full and even looking at it you can tell by the dark color heavy in alcohol (15%+). On the nose you get just about anything under the sun mild earthy notes to plum through darker fruits before finishing with some chocolate aromas. On the tongue it is silky smooth and very bold, it has rich velvety fruit with smoky overtones. It feels like you can almost chew on this wine. The fruit last through the mid-palate and into the finish before giving way to tannins which are held in balance by what you have just experienced.

Given my interest in aging this wine, as I drank this I tried to imagine how it will continued to develop in the bottle. Parker says it should last for 15-20 years. I am guessing that it will begin to mellow, the fruit, the tannins, the heavy alcohol. I wonder if I will like that better than it is now. Likely I have enough to try it both ways…

Rating: Cellar It

2005 Rosenblum “Heritage Clone” San Francisco Bay Petite Sirah

Price: $14.40 direct from the winery

What They Said:

Per the winery “The vineyards are located at the foot of Mt. Diablo at the edge of San Francisco Bay. This wine exhibits a great jet black color with aromatics and flavors of ripe blackberries, plums, chocolate, black pepper, violets and spice. This is the perfect wine to pair with hearty fare such as barbecue smoked prime rib, leg of lamb with thyme or grilled sausages. Drink now or cellar for 3-10 years.”

What I Think:

Before we get too far on this one, especially considering my recent comments in regards to Rosenblum, I want to quickly disclose that I have nearly three cases of the 2004 of this wine in my cellar, which accounts for roughly a third of the total quantity. By the way, I recently pulled a few out so maybe you will be seeing that write up soon. I’ll save my big spiel on what attracted me to this wine initially for then.

Now that I have highlighted my bias, let’s get on to this wine. As my wife was making me a nice steak dinner for Father’s Day this seemed like a good bottle to grab.  After popping the cork and pouring it in the glass the first thing you immediately notice is the color, actually I’m not sure that is it. I actually think that you notice the density, or perhaps viscosity. I am not even sure what it means as I say it but this wine seems thick. On the nose you get loads of blackberries with darker things that I have difficulty, with cheating from above maybe it was the chocolate, identifying lingering in the background. On the tongue you are immediately hit with a burst of dark fruit that slightly sours to plums before again rounding out in the mid-palate and giving way to a combination of smoke, spice and vanilla. This trio, along with a bit of tannins, makes for a long, smooth (and again) dark (or thick) finish. At this price point not sure you can hope for much more

My initial reaction was that I should have grabbed a case at the tasting when they were offering 25% off. The winery listed this at $18.00, even with 25% off, I would have saved $4.50 a bottle, the price would have been $13.50. Given that K&L has it for $13.95 I am not as disappointed as I thought I may have been.

I feel as if my wine budget is pretty close to tapped based on recent spending but I think I will dig a little deeper, initially for at least a few more bottles. I need to try this side by side with the ’04 to see if it is as good as the previous vintage. Ideally the results there would leave me wanting more and I could start a nice library of these bottles as they seem to age for some time. Try a bottle of the rich, layered, luscious wine if you have a chance. And if you do let me know your thoughts because I think this is something special. Especially at this price point!

Rating: Wow!