2007 Markus Molitor Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

2012 ZAP Zinfandel The Heritage Vineyard

2011 Poderi Luigi Einaudi Dolcetto Dogliani

2010 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon Stile Blocks

2008 Treasure Hunter Wines Grenache Emma’s Crush Santa Barbara County

2011 Myriad Cellars Sémillon McGah Family Vineyard

2004 Jean Edwards Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard

 

 

 

2007 Markus Molitor Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett – $19.00

I bought a six pack of this wine during a tasting at the local wine store several years ago.  I remember it being fairly sweet but loaded with acidity so I swore I’d keep my hands off the wine for at least 5 years.  I was almost successful waiting for that long and my patience was rewarded.  It’s been another year and a half, so it’s time to check in again.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a bright golden yellow color.  The very alluring nose has apples, honeydew melon, spice, minerals, vanilla, citrus zest, orange blossoms, and a touch of petrol.  This has light to medium body, crisp acidity and solid residual sweetness.  The rich and creamy palate has ripe apples dipped in honey, minerals and melon up front with vanilla and lime coming in on the back end.  The finish is very long and full of sweet fruit, minerals and bit of closing citrus.  Definitely on the sweet side for a Kabinett, but the acidity does a valiant job holding everything together.  There’s no hurry on opening this one, it has several years of life, perhaps even more with good cellaring.  This wine has 7.5% alcohol.  (92 pts)

2007 Markus Molitor Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

2007 Markus Molitor Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

 

 

 

2012 ZAP Zinfandel The Heritage Vineyard

The Heritage Vineyard is an unusual and unprecedented collection of rare and famous Zinfandel vine cuttings grown throughout California.  The Heritage Vineyard stretches over one acre within the UC Davis Oakville Research Station in Napa Valley, California.

 

During the first phase of the project in 1995, 63 selections were planted; during the second phase in 1999, an additional 27, so that the total number of selections now totals 90.  The vines are grafted onto St. George rootstock in clay loam soil with a spacing of 9 feet x 8 feet.  Each vine is head-trained and spur-pruned in the “goblet” shape as they would have been in the nineteenth century.  These practices are not as typical today, since they insure a low (and high quality) yield.  ZAP began producing wine from this historical vineyard in 1997.

 

The first Heritage Vineyard Zinfandel was harvested by ZAP winery producer Nils Venge of Saddleback Cellars and Mary Buckles Pisor of PlumpJack Winery in Oakville.  The 1998 vintage by Robert Biale of Robert Biale Vineyards in Napa, the 1999 vintage was by Matthew Cline of Cline Cellars.  The 2000 vintage is by Rod Berglund of Joseph Swan Vineyards, 2001 vintage is produced by Joel Peterson of Ravenswood, 2002 vintage by Ehren Jordon of Turley Wine Cellars, vintage 2003 by Paul Draper of Ridge Vineyards, 2004 by Kent Rosenblum of Rosenblum Cellars, 2005 by Bill Knuttel of Dry Creek Vineyard and Ottimino, 2006 by Dr. J. Bernard Seps of Storybook Mountain Vineyards. 2007 by Joel Peterson of Ravenswood and 2008 produced by Tom Mackey of St. Francis Winery.  2009 by Ted Seghesio of Seghesio Family Vineyards. 2010 by Diane Wilson of Wilson Family Winery. 2011 by Scott Harvey of Scott Harvey Wines. 2012 by Chris Leamy of Terra d’Oro Winery.

 

More information on the project is available by clicking here.

 

Each year ZAP selects a distinguished winery member to craft a unique Zinfandel vintage from the Heritage Vineyard, which is available for tasting at many ZAP events and for purchase during the Zinfandel Festival.

 

This wine has 14.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.

 

This wine was provided to me by Protocol Wine Studio for a tasting during #WineStudio online tasting and chat.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a bright ruby red color.  The inviting nose has brambly berries, dusty minerals, warm baking spices, tart cherries, freshly cracked black peppercorns, dried earth and a touch of mint.  This has medium body with moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate bright cherries, spice and brambly berries jump out first with dusty minerals and black pepper coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with dried earthiness and a touch of mint adding nice depth.  (92 pts)

2012 ZAP Zinfandel The Heritage Vineyard

2012 ZAP Zinfandel The Heritage Vineyard

 

 

 

2011 Poderi Luigi Einaudi Dolcetto Dogliani – $15.19

I enjoy a nice Italian Dolcetto, they are just not that easy to find around here.  I had enjoyed this wine in past vintages so when a local wine store offered this vintage on an e-mail offer, I had to grab several bottles.

 

This wine has decent distribution in this country.  If you can’t find this wine in your area, there are several online retailers that carry the wine.  Click here to check out some of the online stores that carry this wine.  The release price is $20, but you can generally find it for a couple dollars less.

 

This wine has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a medium to dark ruby color.  The inviting nose has plum, black cherry, dusty minerals, licorice, cocoa powder and wildflowers.  This has medium body, soft to moderate tannins and good acidity.  On the palate nice fruit and minerals hit first, followed by cocoa.  The finish has decent length with a floral note coming into focus.  This is easy to pair with food but is also tasty on its own.  (90 pts)

2011 Poderi Luigi Einaudi Dolcetto Dogliani

2011 Poderi Luigi Einaudi Dolcetto Dogliani

 

 

 

2010 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon Stile Blocks – $39.99

I bought a few bottles of this wine hoping it was going to be a nice Cabernet for weekend dinners.  My first bottle was a bit disappointing since the wine lacked everything that makes a Howell Mountain Cab distinctive and interesting.  I’m hoping the first bottle was a bit off but based on a couple other notes, I’m afraid my initial opinion was right.  I guess I’ll see this evening.

 

This has 13.6% alcohol by volume and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a fairly deep maroon color.  The big and fully open nose is full of cassis, licorice, warm baking spices, black pepper, leather, dried herbs, and a touch of cedar.  This has medium to full body with soft, ripe tannins, and decent acidity.  On the palate this is soft and jammy for a Howell Mountain wine.  Big, ripe, juicy, berries and spice hit the front end of the palate coating it in flavor with dried herbs and spicy oak coming in on the backend.  The finish has good length and shows jammy fruit and spice with an oaky overlay but could use some additional complexity.  This is an easier drinking wine than I expected, this isn’t one to stash in the cellar for an extended time.  (89 pts)

2010 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon Stile Blocks

2010 Ladera Cabernet Sauvignon Stile Blocks

 

 

 

2008 Treasure Hunter Wines Grenache Emma’s Crush Santa Barbara County – $16.90

This was about as easy of a purchase that I ever made.  I love the Grenache grape, the wines coming out of Santa Barbara County, and the value the Treasure Hunter label provides.

 

Winery history

Each Treasure Hunter wine goes through a pain-staking process of examination from our panel of nine called The De-Vine Nine.  Made up of top sommeliers, winemakers and restaurateurs, they are the best of the best and they pour through hundreds of wines before they are deemed worthy.

 

Each wine is a small one-time offering and represents an extraordinary opportunity to drink seminal wines of great importance.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a light to medium ruby color.  The very inviting nose has cherries, raspberries, dried herbs, baking spices, white pepper, crushed stone minerals and earthy underbrush.  This has medium body, moderate tannins and good acidity.  On the palate spicy, peppery cherries and raspberries grab hold, slowly allowing some dried herbs and earthiness slip into focus.  The finish had decent length with a nice mix of the fruit and savory elements.  This is drinking very nicely at this time and should hold for another year or two.  This has 14.7% alcohol.  (91 pts)

2008 Treasure Hunter Wines Grenache Emma's Crush Santa Barbara County

2008 Treasure Hunter Wines Grenache Emma’s Crush Santa Barbara County

 

 

 

2011 Myriad Cellars Sémillon McGah Family Vineyard – $24.00

When Mike Smith, the owner/wine maker of Myriad Cellars sent out an e-mail offer for this wine as well as three others with a total combined production of well under 200 total cases, I was lucky enough to get a small allocation.  This was one of those offers you couldn’t refuse.  There was a total production of only 48 cases of this wine.  How can you pass on a single vineyard, Rutherford Sémillon for $24?  I couldn’t!  In the same offer, I had to also grab a few bottles of their Rutherford sourced Petit Verdot, which had an even lower production of only 22 cases.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a bright yellow with a golden tint.  The crisp and clean nose has melon, pineapple, lemon zest, toasted almonds, minerals, spices, honey, and a very slight herbal note.  This has medium body, tart citrusy acidity, and a touch of tannins.  On the palate this has rich fruit and minerals up front with a big jolt of citrus coming in to hold everything together very nicely on the midpalate.  The finish has nice length with a touch of an herbal element coming into the picture.  This is drinking nicely, this can be enjoyed now or over the next year, maybe two.  This has 14.4% alcohol.  (92 pts)

2011 Myriad Cellars Sémillon McGah Family Vineyard

2011 Myriad Cellars Sémillon McGah Family Vineyard

 

 

 

2004 Jean Edwards Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard – $60.00

I guess you can call this a Social Media relationship.  I learned of Jean Edwards Cellars via Twitter.  I read their Tweets and started following them, luckily they followed me back.  Over the last couple of years we have exchanged jokes and Tweets about just about everything.  I was finally able to order a few bottles of their wine, and after giving a bottle a good 15 minutes to recover from the trip half way across the country, I popped the cork.  I am now a big fan and I spread their name to anyone who will listen to me.  I highly encourage you to check out their website and join their mailing list.  These are two very nice people making some of the best wine in the Napa Valley.

 

Winery history

We are the owner/vintners of Jean Edwards Cellars – we share a passion for wine, a similar palate and a singular vision on the style of wines we produce.  We live by our motto that “you should only make wines you love to drink” and focus our production on artisan red wines that are full-bodied and classically styled.

 

Quality and heritage are important to us – our wines are reflective of their origins and are sourced some of the most prestigious vineyards (and vineyard blocks) throughout Napa Valley including Stagecoach Vineyard (on Pritchard Hill); vineyards on the valley floor in Rutherford, Oakville and Coombsville; and mountain vineyards on Howell and Spring Mountain.

 

Time really flies – we started producing commercial wines in 2004 but our dream of producing high quality Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon wines started much earlier when we travelled to the valley in 1985.  During that trip, we developed a true appreciation for cabernet sauvignon wines and decided we would some day be a part of the business and produce a wine called Jean Edwards Cellars (our two middle names).  It was a goal worth waiting for and twenty plus years later we released our first wine in the Spring of 2006.

 

For much more information on the winery or to join their mailing list click here.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a fairly deep ruby to garnet color with just a touch of lightening at the edge.  The sensuous nose features cassis, cedar, tobacco, dried herbs, cherries, smoke, well worn leather, dried violets and just a touch of earthiness.  This has medium body with moderate ripe tannins and very good acidity.  The wine is rich and velvety on the palate with dried herb laced berries and cherries up front with nice savory notes and spicy oak adding considerable depth and complexity.  The long finish adds a touch of dark chocolate and earthiness to the fruit and dried herbs.  The wine is in a perfect drinking window with absolutely no rough edges or overpowering elements, but it should hold for at least a few more years if not longer.  This wine has 14.7% alcohol and sports a natural cork.  (95 pts)

2004 Jean Edwards Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard

2004 Jean Edwards Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard

 

 

 

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You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

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Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!