Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2007 Carter Cellars Merlot Truchard Vineyard (Napa Valley)

This wine is very young and will no doubt improve with additional bottle time. The nose shows notes of bay leaf, red fruit and violets. Plumb, cedar and spice are the predominate flavors across the palate. The tannins are big and burly now but will lay down with another year or two in bottle. It has the structure to age gracefully so give it some time. The Truchard vineyard is in the cooler Carneros region at the bottom of the the Napa Valley which well suited for growing Merlot.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

2007 Tamarack Cellars Cabernet Franc Wahluke Slope

Dusty cherry and spice on the nose. This wine is a bit young but still shows nice blackberry and plumb fruit across the palate with hints of spice and tobacco. The finish is moderately tannic and lingering. An excellent value at $28. The fruit for this red wine comes from the Wahluke Slope AVA around Yakima, Washington. It's one of the warmest climate growing regions in Washington state. Gravelly, rocky soil, combined with a dry, warm climate, make Wahluke Slope one of the best places in Washington to grow wine grapes.

2005 Frank Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)

This one has been waiting patiently in the cellar. The nose had very floral notes with violets showing most prominently. The mouth feel was balanced with ripe red fruit, cedar and a hint of currant in the mix. The finish was medium length and had a hit of the hefty tannins at the end but these should lay down some with additional bottle time. Very interesting and very good. The Cabernet Sauvignon fruit for this wine come from the S & J vineyard which is east of the Vaca Mountain range in Napa’s Capell Valley. The soils there are fertile, well-drained and clay-loam based. The cold nights balance with the warm days, ensuring the long-even ripening of the fruit.

2007 Delectus Cabernet Franc (Knights Valley)

Ruby red color. The nose is big with black cherry, spice box, plum and bell pepper. The palate is also large with the cherry and plum carrying on and the addition of vanilla, and strawberry. The finish is long and picks up a good mineral note to add to the complexity. The fruit was sourced from a mature hillside vineyard across from the Delectus Estate located in Knights Valley in Sonoma County just west of Calistoga. Although this wine is young it is drinking well now. Save some though as it will get better with additional bottle age. Highly recommended.