Longboard Vineyards Merlot 2015, Dakine Vineyard, Russian River Valley
From the Estate Vineyard on Westside Road in the Russian River Valley, this wonderful Merlot is field-blended with 13% Malbec. Great with any meal that has a nice spice or heat to it, this is a crowd favorite and a wine that rekindles our love affair with this variety.
2014 Trecini Merlot, Russian River Valley, California, USA$25.00
The 2014 Trecini Merlot comes from the Dunn Vineyard, which sits in the low-lying eastern foothills of Sonoma County in a slightly warmer region of the Russian River Valley. The vines grow in well drained gravely soils on a westerly facing slope which allowed the grapes to ripen slowly and capture the last bit of the sun’s afternoon warmth, an essential factor in this much cooler vintage. Memorable, the Merlot brings a richer mouth-feel, with a rich velvet texture. The lower alcohol allows for these deeper complex textures and dimensions to come together and produce a distinctive classic Merlot more reminiscent of Europe than California. Trecini Merlot shows off delicious red fruit characters, with some whiffs of dried herbs and a touch of tobacco. Suitable for drinking now, we believe that this wine has enough natural acidity and structure to be consumed for several years to come.
Melville Vineyards Chardonnay, Verna’s Vineyard 2013$25.00
This wine is 100% from Verna’s Vineyard in Los Alamos and is a combination of clones 4, 76, 95, 96 and selections Mount Eden and Hudson. Like their Sta. Rita Hills vineyard, Verna’s Vineyard also endures very windy conditions and is planted on extremely sandy and porous soils. Pale gold in color, with aromatics of toasted almond, apricot, grilled lemon and
mandarin orange creamsicle coming forward initially. Secondary notes of fresh thyme, cheese rind and dried apricot also drift in the background. Oily and tender on the palate, with a streak of vibrant acidity that maintains the wine’s focus and drive.
Au Bon Climat Chardonnay 2015, Santa Barbara$26.00
The blend is from four well-farmed vineyards: Bien Nacido, Sierra Madre, Los Alamos and Rancho Vinedo. Au Bon Climat has been making balanced, food friendly Chardonnays since 1982. Even in the early 2000s when ripe, oaky Chardonnays were all the rage, Au Bon Climat stuck to a more subtle and refined style, with minerality and intensity. The 2014 Santa Barbara County Chardonnay is a beautiful example of the Au Bon Climat style. The flinty, stony aromas stand out while in the background is a hard spice note from surlee barrel aging. There are notes of lemon-lime and soft vanilla. With the first taste it is irresistible. This is one of those wines that invites the consumer to have another glass. At this young age, this wine would be perfect with shellfish or poultry. It will improve for at least 10 years and as it evolves, try this wine with Chanterelle mushroom pasta and be amazed.