Posts tagged ‘#LodiWine’

Cliffs Wine Picks – Albariño Wines from Lodi

 

2016 Estate Crush Albariño Lodi

2016 Klinker Brick Albariño Lodi

2016 Mettler Family Vineyards Albariño Estate Grown

 

 

This post is based on samples that were provided to me.

 

These wines were provided to me for International Albariño Day which was on August 1st.  Since Lodi always raises the bar a notch or two, they turned the day into a long weekend.  Six Lodi wineries, Bokisch Vineyards, Dancing Coyote Wines, Estate Crush, Klinker Brick Winery, Mettler Family Vineyards and Oak Farm Vineyards hosted festivities and special tastings from August 4th to the 6th.

 

Albariño [al-bah-ree-nyoh] is one of the major grape varietals grown in Spain.  The Rias Baixas region is the “home base” for the grape.  The grape occupies 90% of the 8,650 acres of vines planted in Rias Baixas by thousands of independent growers.  This is a thick skinned grape that creates fragrant and floral wines with crisp acidity.

 

Even though the Lodi region is a long way from Rias Baixas, the wines produced here retain the characteristics of their Spanish counterparts but with a touch more ripeness while at the same time maintaining the crisp acidity that allows the wines to be served with a wide range of dishes.  The wine shines when paired with fish and shellfish.

 

For a great, all inclusive look at Lodi, visit the Lodi Wine site.

 

 

Here is my line-up for this tasting:

Lodi Albariño Line-up

Lodi Albariño Line-up

 

 

 

2016 Estate Crush Albariño Lodi – SRP $18

The grapes for this wine come from the epicenter of Albariño in Lodi, Bokisch Vineyards.  The vines are 12 years old and planted in volcanic, gravelly grey loom.  After fermentation, malolactic fermentation was blocked to retain the fresh, crisp acidity.  The wine was aged in 100% stainless steel.  The total production was a miniscule 84 cases.

 

Estate Crush is a custom winemaking operation in downtown Lodi that handles growers desires to make wines from their grapes.  They can process anything from one barrel of wine up to 20 ton lots.  The facility was founded in Spring 2009 and opened in December 2011 and is currently the “home” of 35 brands and 88 wines.

 

More information on the facility is available on their website by clicking here.

 

This is a light yellow color with a slight green tint.  The fresh and vibrant nose has green apples, white peach, unripe pineapple, orange blossoms, melon, fresh leafy herbs, lavender, lemon zest and a touch of sea breeze.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and seems to be totally dry.  On the palate tart green apples, pineapple and orange blossoms grab your attention on the front end with white peach and lavender coming in later.  The finish has great length with leafy herbs and mouthwatering lemon zest providing nice depth.  This is a really nice Albariño that would be perfect on a warm, sunny day.  This is very easy to kick back and sip.  This has 13.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2016 Estate Crush Albariño Lodi

2016 Estate Crush Albariño Lodi

 

 

 

2016 Klinker Brick Albariño Lodi – SRP $15

The grapes for this 100% Albariño come from the Mokelumne River appellation in Lodi and were harvested on August 11, 2016.

 

Klinker Brick is owned by Steve and Lori Felten, fifth generation grape growers in the Lodi region.  In the early days, the grapes were picked and packed in boxes that were shipped to the east coast and Canada for home winemakers.  In the late 1980s the winery upgraded their processes and equipment to reduce yields but greatly increase the quality of their grapes.  A few years later the family added winemaking to their resume and released their first vintage of wine.

 

Much more information on Klinker Brick and the Felten family is available on their website by clicking here.

 

The wine is a pale greenish yellow color.  The bright and lively nose has green apples, white peach, lemon peel with some pith, dusty minerals, melon, tangerine and a touch of leafy green herb.  This has light to medium body with great acidity.  On the palate tart green apples, minerals and melon jump out quickly with lemon zest and minerals slipping in on the back end.  The mouthwatering finish has very good length with tangerine, lemon pith and a touch of leafy herb providing very nice depth.  The bright citrus makes this a delightful wine to sip alone or with a light meal on a sunny day.  I liked the slight bitter bite on the finish.  I’d love to kick back and sip this on the deck during the upcoming eclipse.  This has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (92 pts)

2016 Klinker Brick Albariño Lodi

2016 Klinker Brick Albariño Lodi

 

 

 

2016 Mettler Family Vineyards Albariño Estate Grown – SRP $20

The winery says this wine “pairs perfectly with a good time”, I have to wholeheartedly agree.

 

The Mettler family have been growing grapes in the region for six generations.  The family’s organically farmed vineyards have produced many great wines over the years and their sustainable practices mean continued quality in the coming years.  The Mettler family have roots in the wine industry dating back into the 1770s.  The family planted their first vineyard in Lodi in late 1800s.  As with most Lodi grape growers, for most of their history the grapes were sold to other producers but in 2001 the family produced and released their first estate wine, a Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

One of my stops in a visit to Lodi last year was at the winery.  These are top notch grape growers and winemakers but more importantly they are friendly and knowledgeable first class people.  Much more information on the winery, the Mettler family and their history is available by clicking here.

 

The wine is a light yellow color.  the outgoing and vibrant nose has green apples, pears, chalky minerals, lime zest, spring flowers, melon and a touch of fresh leafy herbs.  This is barely medium body with crisp acidity and seems to be totally dry.  On the palate tart apples and pears are joined by minerals on the front end with melon and a nice floral note coming in on the back end.  The finish lingers nicely with a hint of leafy herbs and a nice jolt of mouthwatering lime zest.  This has enough body to stand up to a slightly heartier dish but with enough acidity to keep it bright and lively.  In my case, it paired wonderfully with pasta tossed with some garlic olive oil topped with a few slices of baked tomatoes that were topped with some fresh basil and oregano.  I really like this wine.  This has 13.8% alcohol and the bottle (which is one of the nicer I’ve seen) is sealed with a twist off closure.  (93 pts)

2016 Mettler Family Vineyards Albariño Estate Grown

2016 Mettler Family Vineyards Albariño Estate Grown

 

 

 

Pairing Suggestion

Here is a quick and easy meal that pairs nicely with any of these wines.

 

Slice a vine ripened tomato into 1/2″ slices.

Drizzle a bit of olive oil over the slices and sprinkle with fresh basil, oregano and garlic.

Bake the slices in a 350 degree over for 5 minutes.

Sprinkle a touch of cheese over the slices and return to the oven for 3 minutes to melt the cheese.

Place the tomatoes over pasta that was tossed with some olive oil (and any juice from the baked tomatoes)

Serve with some shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and a slice of garlic bread to soak up the juice and olive oil.

 

For added garlic flavor we prefer to use a garlic-olive oil.

 

 

 

 

Conclusion and recommendations

In my opinion, Albariño has found a new home in Lodi.  The perfect growing conditions allow the grapes to ripen at their pace allowing them to be harvested with great flavor and concentration but with the crisp acidity the wines need to be fresh and vibrant.  These are very easy to enjoy wines that pair very nicely with a wide array of lighter, warm weather meals.  These are all wines made with pride by families who either grow their own grapes or buy them from “friends”.  The over riding thing I learned during my visit is this region performs like one big team.  Everyone from the grape growers to the winery owners are equals when it comes to producing these world class wines.  The wines in this post are generally not available at you local wine store.  They are available via the winery’s websites or from the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center.

 

 

If you want to plan a trip to Lodi, which I highly recommend, your first step should be to visit the Lodi Wine Site.  If you find yourself in Lodi and want to sip some wine, buy some wine or look for recommendations, I encourage you to visit them at:

Lodi Wine & Visitor Center

2545 West Turner Road

Lodi, CA 95242

Phone: (209) 367-4727

Email: lwwc@lodiwine.com

 

This is also a great place to buy Lodi wines.  They have an extensive inventory of wines that you can have shipped to your home.

 

 

 

 

 

Lodi Information

Lodi is just east of San Francisco and has provided grapes for producers all over the world since the 1800’s.  The Lodi area has provided grapes for producers all over the world for decades, and many families in Lodi have been growing grapes for six and seven generations.  Today, there are approximately 85 wineries and tasting rooms, over 750 growers and more than 100,000 acres planted to vineyards.  The wines we tasted commemorate the heritage of Lodi and are not only exquisite, but tell a narrative.

 

It is a well-known fact that Lodi is predominantly a red wine region, proudly holding the self-proclaimed title of “Zinfandel Capital of the World”.  What is lesser known is that Lodi’s unique Mediterranean climate allows for over 75 different varietals to thrive.

 

Tons of great and useful information is available on the Wines of Lodi, LOCA website.  I highly encourage you to read about the area by clicking here.  You can also follow Lodi on Twitter at @Lodi_Wine.

 

 

Lodi Green Program

The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program.  Originally launched in 2005, over the past two years the program went through and extensive review to update and make standards more rigorous.

 

The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.  This allows us to produce higher quality wines more reflective of the places and people that grow them.  It gives you the opportunity to promote responsible farming by enjoying the great wines from these vineyards.

 

When you drink a certified sustainably grown Lodi wine, you are supporting a farmer, a vintner, and a community that embraces its responsibility to take care of the environment.

 

Visit the Lodi Certified Green site for more information on the region’s sustainable winegrowing.

 

 

 

 

Calhoun & Company enjoys a diverse portfolio of wine and spirits clients. From family owned to corporate managed, luxury to everyday priced, small lot wines to nationally distributed, Napa to Oporto, we thrive on the varied media opportunities each of these categories presents. We are exceptionally proud of the breadth and depth of our practice, as illustrated by this partial list of brands we have worked with over the past 13 years.  For more information, visit their website.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

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!

 

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Cliffs Wine Picks – July 2017 Vol 3

 

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

2007 Elyse Petite Sirah Barrel Select

2014 Jean Edwards Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Dalla Gasperina Vineyard

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rosé

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

 

 

 

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White – $28.50

This wine is a blend of:

54% Sonoma Valley Semillon, Monte Rosso Vineyard

30% Sonoma Valley Muscadelle, Pagani Ranch

16% Russian River Valley Palomino, Saitone Ranch

 

This was the third vintage of this versatile white wine.  The amount of new oak used for this wine has decreased to allow the fruit to shine.  The Muscadelle was fermented in stainless steel. The Palomino was fermented in 75% stainless steel and 25% new oak.  The Semillon was fermented in all oak but only 22% was new.  The wine did not go through malolactic fermentation to allow the retention of the acidity and to retain the freshness.  There were 316 cases produced

 

The wine is a nice golden straw color.  The fresh nose has melons, beeswax, lemon zest, orange blossoms, pineapple, chalky minerals and just a hint of spicy oak.  This has a fairly full body and a creamy texture with good acidity.  On the palate melon, beeswax, minerals and orange blossom grab your attention on the front end with under ripe pineapple coming in later.  The finish has nice length with lemon zest and a touch of spicy oak providing depth.  This is drinking very nicely right now and it should continue to show well for at least a couple more years.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

 

 

 

2007 Elyse Petite Sirah Barrel Select – $20.83

I’ve been a big fan of the quality red wines being produced by Elyse for many years.  The winery was one of the first we visited on our first trip to wine country.  This is an outstanding winery with equally outstanding people selling their wines at very consumer friendly prices.

 

This wine includes 9% Zinfandel.  The grapes are from Oles, Souyoultzis, Massa, Wood and Chavez-Leeds vineyards.  After fermentation, the wine was aged for 10 1/2 months in American oak with 40% being new.

 

The wine is a dark, inky maroon color, almost black.  The very expressive nose is full of crushed blackberries, minerals, blueberries, fresh ground dark roast coffee, dark bittersweet chocolate, warm baking spices and vanilla.  This has medium to full body, moderate to solid tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate the spicy blackberries and minerals hit first and slowly allow some coffee and chocolate to peak through.  The finish is long and full of berries and dark chocolate with nice spice and coffee adding depth.  This is now in its’ prime drinking window and should hold for several years.  This isn’t made in a massively ripe style, the alcohol is a manageable 14.7%.  This could last another decade.  This wine has 14.7% alcohol by volume and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2007 Elyse Petite Sirah Barrel Select

2007 Elyse Petite Sirah Barrel Select

 

 

 

2014 Jean Edwards Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Dalla Gasperina Vineyard – $24

The 2015 vintage of this wine was included in last week’s post.

 

This is the first white wine produced by Jean Edwards Cellars.  Dalla Gasperina Vineyard is on the northern end of the Rutherford Bench, down the road from Franciscan Winery.   This is a blend of 92% Sauvignon Blanc and 8% Semillon.  I highly recommend getting on the winery’s mailing list to get first shot at these limited production wines and to enjoy mailing list prices.  Check out the mailing list by clicking here.

 

The wine is a pale straw yellow color.  The enticing nose has apples, lemon zest, white pepper, leafy herbs, pineapple, dusty minerals, apricot, orange blossoms and anise.  This has medium body with mouthwatering acidity.  On the palate tart apples, white pepper, lemon zest and an herbal streak immediately take control on the front end with apricot and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with anise and dusty minerals joining the tropical fruit and white pepper.  The crisp acidity will leave your mouthwatering for another sip.  A great initial white wine effort from this formerly red wine only winery.  This is very drinkable now but will last for at least two or three years, maybe longer.  This wine has 14.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2014 Jean Edwards Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Dalla Gasperina Vineyard

2014 Jean Edwards Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Dalla Gasperina Vineyard

 

 

 

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc – $9.49

Ironstone Vineyards is a family owned winery that we visited during our Lodi excursion.  The Kautz family were gracious hosts during the visit.  I enjoyed their entire line-up of value priced wines.  The quality of the wines far exceeded the “low price of admission”.  To me, their Petite Sirah and this Cabernet Franc were the standouts.  I like the wine enough to include a few bottles in the case I bought soon after returning home.  Visit the Ironstone Vineyards website for a ton more information on the winery, family and the wines.

 

This wine is 85% Cabernet Franc and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon from the Alta Mesa and Sloughhouse AVAs in Lodi.  The wine gets a brief two month aging in new French oak.

 

The wine is a medium to dark ruby color.  The very approachable nose has crushed berries, stony minerals, dried leafy herbs, vanilla, cedar and wild flowers.  This has medium body with soft tannins and good acidity.  On the palate juicy berries, vanilla and dried herbs dominate the front end with toasty cedar coming in on the back end.  The fruit laden finish has nice length.  This isn’t a wine to lay down, I’d drink this one on the younger side while the fruit is crisp and fresh.  Open this one with a juicy burger hot off the grill or even better with a platter of cheeses and meats with a few friends.  This wine is a steal if you can find it for around $10.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an artificial cork.  (90 pts)

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

 

 

 

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rosé – $14.40

I couldn’t find much information on the winery online.  I assume I’m just looking in the wrong places.

 

The wine is a light pink salmon color.  The soft and laid back nose has cherries, strawberries, stony minerals, orange blossoms, white peach and lemongrass.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and seems to be totally dry.  On the palate bright red fruit, minerals and white peach jump out on the front end with lemongrass and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with mineral and red fruit.  The is a very flavorful and balanced rosé that pairs nicely with a light meal but also excels sipping on its’ own on a sunny day.  This has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (90 pts)

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a'Campo Old Vine Rosé Lodi

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rosé Lodi

 

 

 

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard – $25.60

Michael McCay and his family moved to Lodi in the mid 1980s.  He started making wine in 1994 and launched McCay Cellars in 2007.

 

This is 100% Grenache that utilized a “native yeast” fermentation and that was aged in neutral oak.  A total of 178 cases were produced.

 

Much more information is on the winery’s website.

 

The wine is a light, translucent ruby red color.  The entrancing nose has raspberries, crushed stone minerals, warm baking spices, plums, white pepper, dry underbrush, fresh flowers and charred wood.  This has medium to full body with medium tannins and great acidity.  On the palate tart berries, white pepper, minerals and under ripe plums quickly grab your attention with baking spices and a nice floral note coming in later.  The finish has very good length with tart cherries and charred wood providing nice depth.  This is on the young side but already tastes great.  This has good balance and is not on the highly extracted/over ripe side of the line.  An outstanding effort!  This tastes more like a Rhone wine than one from the new world.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

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!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – Lodi Summer Wines – Vol 2

 

2016 M2 Vintners Carignane Rosé of Carignane

2016 Jeremy Wine Company Albariño

2016 St. Amant Winery Barbera Rosé

2015 Michael-David Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

2016 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Cinsault Rosé

2016 d’Art Wines Barbera White Barbera

 

 

This post is based on samples that were provided to me.  I am showing the suggested retail price for the wines.

 

For a great, all inclusive look at Lodi, visit the Lodi Wine site.  I highly recommend reading ” The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing” to learn more about the region’s commitment to the environment and leaving the area better for future generations.  This is very important for a region built around family owned businesses.

 

 

 

2016 M2 Vintners Carignane Rosé of Carignane – SRP $18

This wine is made from 100% Carignane grapes grown from the Mule Plane Vineyard that was planted “sometime” around 1920.  The vineyard’s name, “Mule Plane”, is in respect of the mules that pulled cast-iron blades to cultivate the ground and vines in the early days.

 

This is made in a traditional French style; the grapes were harvested, then crushed, and the skins were allowed to remain in contact with the juice for a short period of time to gain color and flavor.  After the must is pressed, the juice is fermented as if it was a white wine at a very low temperature.  The total production was only 180 cases.

 

Much more information on the winery and their wines is available on their website by clicking here.

 

The wine is a light peach color.  The bright and vibrant nose has cherries, chalky minerals, strawberries, white peach, melon, orange blossoms, subtle underbrush and a hint of leafy herbs.  This is barely medium body with nice acidity and just a subtle hint of sweetness.  On the palate tart cherries, white peach, strawberries and minerals grab your attention immediately with melon and a touch of underbrush coming in later.  The juicy finish has good length with orange blossoms and a touch of leafy herb providing nice depth.  The nice upfront fruit makes this easy to sip and the savory notes coming in on the back end and finish keep it interesting.  Nice job!  This has 12.6% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (91 pts)

2016 M2 Vintners Carignane Rosé of Carignane

2016 M2 Vintners Carignane Rosé of Carignane

 

 

 

2016 Jeremy Wine Company Albariño – SRP $20

Jeremy Wine Co is owned by Jeremy & Choral Trettevik.  The winery has grown from 5 tons of grapes in their first harvest to now harvesting well over 100 tons.

 

I’ve been very impressed by the Albariño wines being produced in Lodi.  These are world-class wines that rival the wines being produced anywhere in the world.  The grapes for this 100% Albariño come from the Felten Vineyard.  The grapes were fermented in temperature controlled stainless steel.  There were only 210 cases of this wine produced in this vintage.

 

For more information on the winery and their wines or to make a purchase, visit their website by clicking here.

 

The wine is a light straw golden color.  The alluring nose has apples, white peach, lemon grass, orange blossoms, lime zest and dusty minerals.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate apples, white peach and lemon grass jump out on the front end with minerals and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with mouthwatering lime zest providing depth and compelling you to grab another sip.  This is great as an aperitif or with a light meal, preferably one with seafood.  This is very easy to like.  This has 13.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2016 Jeremy Wine Company Albariño

2016 Jeremy Wine Company Albariño

 

 

 

2016 St. Amant Winery Barbera Rosé – SRP $15

St. Amant is a family owned and run winery that was founded in 1979 by Tim and Barbara Spencer.  Their son, Stuart is currently the  knowledgeable and very friendly winemaker.  I highly encourage you to read about the wonderful history and growth of this winery by clicking here.  While you are visiting the site, you can purchase their wines.

 

My first exposure to this specific wine was at a “welcome” reception and dinner in Lodi in September.  I love this crisp and flavorful wine.  I’m glad I was able to try the latest vintage.

 

The wine is a bright cherry color.  The fresh and lively nose has strawberries, cherries, dusty minerals, orange blossoms and a touch of leafy herb.  This has light to medium body with nice acidity.  On the palate tart strawberries and cherries jump out on the front end with minerals and a hint of leafy herb coming in later.  The finish has nice length with orange blossom and a touch of citrus zest providing depth.  This is extremely easy to sip on a warm and sunny day alone or with a light meal.  This may not be the most complex bottle of wine out there but it is extremely tasty.  I like this one a lot.  This has 12.8% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2016 St. Amant Winery Barbera Rosé

2016 St. Amant Winery Barbera Rosé

 

 

 

2015 Michael-David Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc – SRP $16

The Michael and David are brother Michael and David Philips, the fifth generation of grape growers in the Philips family storied history.

 

Sustainable farming practices are just slogans and buzzwords for the Michael David Winery.  They have adopted some of the most progressive sustainable farming practices in state.  All 750 acres of the family’s vineyards are third party certified.  The winery goes as far as offering a per ton bonus to follow in the family’s foot steps.  Starting with the 2011 vintage, 100% of the Lodi grown fruit crushed at Michael David winery have been certified sustainable.

 

Much more info on the family, the winery and their wines is available on their website.

 

The wine is a very light straw yellow with a slight green tint.  The enticing nose has green apples, flinty minerals, lemon grass, apricot and grapefruit zest.  This is barely medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate tart apples, apricot and minerals pop out on the front end with lemon zest coming in on the back end.  The finish has nice length with mouthwatering grapefruit zest providing depth.  This would be very nice by itself or with a light meal on a warm day in a sunny location.  This is very appealing and refreshing.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (90 pts)

2015 Michael-David Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

2015 Michael-David Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

 

 

 

2016 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Cinsault Rosé – SRP $24

The proprietor/winemaker for Uvaggio is Jim Moore.  Jim has a long history in the California wine business.  It was his vision and development that lead to the creation of La Famiglia di Robert Mondavi.  This was my first introduction to the other wines coming out of California beyond Cabernet, Zinfandel, Merlot, etc.  Their Barbera was our “house wine” for several years.  I’m glad I now know and can enjoy the newest iteration of these wonderful wines.

 

Much more information on Jim, the winery and their wines is available by clicking here.

 

This 100% Lodi sourced wine is a blend of 80% Cinsaut from the Bechthold Vineyard, 11% Vermentino from Gayla’s Vineyard and 9% Grenache from the Mettler Vineyard.  For this wine, the winery co-fermented the Vermentino with the Cinsault and a week later added the Grenache to prolong the fermentation to add additional complexity.

 

The wine is a bright salmon pink color.  The expressive nose has strawberries, cherries, orange blossoms, lime zest, white peach and a hint of white pepper.  This has light to medium body with nice acidity and just a hint of lingering sweetness.  On the palate bright strawberries and cherries are joined with orange blossoms on the front end with white peaches coming in on the back end.  The finish has good length with white pepper and tart lime zest providing nice depth.  This is very easy to sip and enjoy.  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (91 pts)

2016 Uvaggio (L'Uvaggio di Giacomo) Cinsault Rosé

2016 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Cinsault Rosé

 

 

 

2016 d’Art Wines White Barbera – SRP $22

“What does a Spanish dancer have to do with a winery that has a French name?”  so begins the history of d’Art Wines.

 

d’Art Wines is owned by Helen and Dave Dart, and this is truly a family business.  Dave and their daughter Jessica handle the winemaking end of the business while Helen greets visitors in the tasting room and shares the winery’s history and some of her wine friendly recipes to pair with the wines.  Some of these recipes are available on their website.  I know I’m looking forward to trying here recipe for Pappa Al Pomodoro, especially with a few of the serving suggestions.

 

Much more information on the Darts, their winery, the wines and Helen’s recipes is available by clicking here.

 

The wine is a pale orange color.  The fresh and exotic nose has cherries, orange blossoms, leafy herbs, strawberries, white pepper and dusty earth.  This is barely medium body with nice acidity and seems to be totally dry.  On the palate tart cherries, strawberries and orange zest come through on the front end with white pepper and leafy herbs coming in later.  The finish has decent length with a touch of dusty earth providing some depth.  This is a lighter bodied wine that will stand up to a lighter meal or even better with a small platter of cheese.  This is easy to sip on a hot sunny day.  This has 14% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (89 pts)

2016 d'Art Wines Barbera White Barbera

2016 d’Art Wines Barbera White Barbera

 

 

 

Conclusion and recommendations

These are all wines made with pride by families who either grow their own grapes or buy them from “friends”.  The over riding thing I learned during my visit is this region performs like one big team.  Everyone from the grape growers to the winery owners are equals when it comes to producing these world class wines.  The wines in this post are generally not available at you local wine store.  They are available via the winery’s websites or from the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center.

 

 

If you want to plan a trip to Lodi, which I highly recommend, your first step should be to visit the Lodi Wine Site.  If you find yourself in Lodi and want to sip some wine, buy some wine or look for recommendations, I encourage you to visit them at:

Lodi Wine & Visitor Center

2545 West Turner Road

Lodi, CA 95242

Phone: (209) 367-4727

Email: lwwc@lodiwine.com

 

This is also a great place to buy Lodi wines.  They have an extensive inventory of wines that you can have shipped to your home.

 

 

 

How can’t you talk about these food friendly wines and not show a few of the dishes that were paired with them.

 

Seafood Boil with Jeremy Albarino

Seafood Boil with Jeremy Albarino

 

 

Shrimp Stir-fry with Michael-David Sauvignon Blanc

Shrimp Stir-fry with Michael-David Sauvignon Blanc

 

 

Steak Bruschetta with Uvaggio Cinsault Rose

Steak Bruschetta with Uvaggio Cinsault Rose

 

 

 

 

Lodi Information

Lodi is just east of San Francisco and has provided grapes for producers all over the world since the 1800’s.  The Lodi area has provided grapes for producers all over the world for decades, and many families in Lodi have been growing grapes for six and seven generations.  Today, there are approximately 85 wineries and tasting rooms, over 750 growers and more than 100,000 acres planted to vineyards.  The wines we tasted commemorate the heritage of Lodi and are not only exquisite, but tell a narrative.

 

It is a well-known fact that Lodi is predominantly a red wine region, proudly holding the self-proclaimed title of “Zinfandel Capital of the World”.  What is lesser known is that Lodi’s unique Mediterranean climate allows for over 75 different varietals to thrive.

 

Tons of great and useful information is available on the Wines of Lodi, LOCA website.  I highly encourage you to read about the area by clicking here.  You can also follow Lodi on Twitter at @Lodi_Wine.

 

 

Lodi Green Program

The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program.  Originally launched in 2005, over the past two years the program went through and extensive review to update and make standards more rigorous.

 

The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.  This allows us to produce higher quality wines more reflective of the places and people that grow them.  It gives you the opportunity to promote responsible farming by enjoying the great wines from these vineyards.

 

When you drink a certified sustainably grown Lodi wine, you are supporting a farmer, a vintner, and a community that embraces its responsibility to take care of the environment.

 

Visit the Lodi Certified Green site for more information on the region’s sustainable winegrowing.

 

 

 

 

Calhoun & Company enjoys a diverse portfolio of wine and spirits clients. From family owned to corporate managed, luxury to everyday priced, small lot wines to nationally distributed, Napa to Oporto, we thrive on the varied media opportunities each of these categories presents. We are exceptionally proud of the breadth and depth of our practice, as illustrated by this partial list of brands we have worked with over the past 13 years.  For more information, visit their website.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

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!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – Lodi Summer Wines – Vol 1

 

2016 Markus Wine Co. Zeal

2015 Heritage Oak Sauvignon Blanc

2015 Harney Lane Albariño

2016 Peltier Rouge Rosé

2016 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

 

 

This post is based on samples that were provided to me.  I have the samples clearly marked and supply the suggested retail price for the wines.

 

For a great, all inclusive look at Lodi, visit the Lodi Wine site.

 

 

 

2016 Markus Wine Co. Zeal – SRP $22

Markus Wine Co. started in 2014 as a sub-venture of Borra Vineyards.  Markus is Markus Niggli, the Swiss born winemaker for Borra.  Borra Vineyards produces fuller bodied red wines from the winery’s vineyards in Lodi and Clements Hills.  For Markus Wine Company’s wine, they went the opposite direction.  These are generally lighter bodied, lower alcohol white wines containing the tasty but lesser known varietals, at least in Lodi, such as Torrontes, Traminette, Kerner, Riesling, Bacchus and Gewürztraminer.  Everyone who thinks Lodi only produces big red wines should check out Markus, they will be in for a BIG surprise.

 

Much more information and the ability to order Markus (and Borra Vineyards) wines are available on their website by clicking here.

 

This is a blend of 64% Borra Gill Creek Ranch Syrah and 36% Borra Church Block Carignane.  This wine was fermented in 100% Stainless Steel using only native yeast.  The wine did not go through malolactic fermentation to retain the crisp acidity.  Only 55 cases were produced and bottled on January 13, 2017.

 

The wine is a bright pink color.  The very inviting nose has cherries, strawberries, dusty minerals, orange blossoms, lime zest and white pepper.  This is dry with a  medium body and very nice acidity.  On the palate strawberries, cherries and dusty minerals quickly grab your attention with orange blossoms and white pepper slipping in on the back end.  The finish has very good length with mouthwatering lime zest providing depth and leading you to grab another sip.  This is another wine that proves Lodi does a lot more than just produce big bodied red wines.  I really like this one!  This has 13.8% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (93 pts)

2016 Markus Wine Co. Zeal

2016 Markus Wine Co. Zeal

 

 

 

2015 Heritage Oak Sauvignon Blanc – SRP $18

Heritage Oak Winery is located on an isolated stretch of Woodbridge Road six miles east of Lodi on 106 acres that nestles up against the north bank of the Mokelumne River.  The winery was built beneath a towering blue oak tree that dominates the landscape for miles around.  The winery produces crisp whites and fruit driven red wines and is owned by Tom and Carmela Hoffman.  The land has been in Tom’s family for five generations.

 

More information on the winery and their wines, as well as the ability to order wine, is available on their website.

 

The wine is a very light, pale straw color.  The refreshing nose has tart green apples, lemon zest, orange blossoms and a hint of leafy herbs.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate tart apples and lemon zest jump out on the front end with under ripe pineapple and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with mouthwatering lemon zest and a touch of leafy herbs providing nice depth.  This is crisp with nice fruit making it very easy to sip on a sunny day.  This one is hard to resist.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2015 Heritage Oak Sauvignon Blanc

2015 Heritage Oak Sauvignon Blanc

 

 

 

2015 Harney Lane Albariño – SRP $20

Harney Lane Winery is a family owned winery that has been in existence sine 2006.  For the previous 100 years the Mettler family farmed the area and vineyards in the area.  I love the following quote from their website – “Meet our most valuable ingredients in our bottles-our family.”  In Lodi family and friends mean everything.

 

Much more information on the winery, family and their wine is available on their website.

 

The wine is a pale yellow with a slight green tint.  The fresh and invigorating nose has green apples, lemongrass, melon, white peach, pineapple, lime zest, dusty minerals and a touch of leafy herbs.  This has medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate tart apples, melon, white peach and lemongrass quickly jump out on the front end with pineapple and lime zest coming in later.  The mouthwatering finish lingers very nicely with an herbal note and minerals providing good depth.  After trying a few different Lodi Albariño wines, this region is turning out some of the best ones from California and they can compete with versions from anywhere in the world.  This is top notch!  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2015 Harney Lane Albariño

2015 Harney Lane Albariño

 

 

 

2016 Peltier Rouge Rosé – SRP $18

Peltier Winery is an innovative, cutting edge winery and custom crush facility. Their mission is to produce and create outstanding wines from our sustainably farmed, certified green, estate grown vineyards.  The owners are Rodney and Gayla Schatz, third generation grape growers.  The couple purchased the 40 acres that would become their first vineyard and home to the winery in 1985, shortly after graduating from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.  Even though the couple are relatively new to growing grapes it is not a strange venture for them.  Rodney’s family farms 1,200 acres of vineyards in the region.

 

In 2001, Rod and Gayla built a custom crush facility to allow numerous other growers in the area to produce their own wines.

 

Much more information on Rod and Gayla, their winery and their wines is available on their website.

 

The wine is a beautiful bright cherry red color.  The inviting nose has cherries, raspberries, dry loamy soil, orange zest, wild flowers and white pepper.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate bright cherries, dry earth, minerals and wild flowers quickly grab your attention with white pepper coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with mouthwatering orange zest and raspberries providing good depth.  I like this wine and absolutely love the bright red color.  This is very easy to sip on the deck on a sunny day.  This has 12% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2016 Peltier Rouge Rosé

2016 Peltier Rouge Rosé

 

 

 

2016 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc – SRP $25

Acquiesce Winery was originally considered to be a long-shot to survive.  In the middle of a region that relied on full bodied Zinfandel and Petite Sirah wines, Susan Tipton started a winery based on the white grapes from France’s Rhone region.  The winery produces crisp and nuances wines from Grenache Blanc, Picpoul Blanc, Roussanne and Viognier as well as a Grenache Rosé.  The vines for the vineyards were sourced from the famous Château de Beaucastel of Châteauneuf du Pape in France.  The winery is so popular that there is a waiting list to join their “wine club”.

 

As usual more information on the winery and the ability to purchase these marvelous wines is available on their website.

 

The wine is a very light pale straw with a slight green tint.  The impressive nose has green apple, melon, white peach, chalky minerals, leafy herbs and lime zest.  This is barely medium body with very nice acidity.  On the palate tart apples, melon, white peach and minerals quickly grab your attention on the front end with a nice herbal note coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with more minerals and a healthy dose of tart lime zest leaving your mouth watering for another sip.  This is a crisp and lighter bodied wine perfect for a light meal on the deck or patio on a sunny day.  This has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (91 pts)

2016 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

2016 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

 

 

 

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé – SRP $18

We met Michael MaCay and his Syrah/Grenache grower Phil Abba and had a “side of the road” tasting at Phil’s Abba Vineyard.  Just like every grower we met you could “feel” Phil’s dedication and pride in the grapes that come out of his vineyard.  I bought this wine as well as McCay Cellars’ Syrah and Grenache wines made from the fruit from Abba Vineyard.  This was fantastic on the side of the hot, dry and dusty road and I could not wait to open a bottle to sip at home.

 

McCay Cellars is owned by Michael McCay.  McCay moved to Lodi in the mid 1980s and started to grow grapes.  He started making wine in 1994 and launched McCay Cellars in 2007.  Much more information is available on the winery, history and most importantly their wines by visiting the McCay Cellars webpage.

 

This wine is mainly Carignane (from 102 year old vines) with Grenache.  The wine was produced with a “native fermentation” in stainless steel.  The wine is a bright salmon color.  The fresh smelling nose has strawberries, peaches, dusty minerals and lime zest.  This has a medium body with good acidity and just a hint of sweetness.  On the palate strawberries and minerals immediately grab your attention with peaches in the background.  The finish has nice length with a hint of lime zest leading you to grab another sip.  This has just a hint of sweetness making it an easy to enjoy companion to a warm day in the sun.  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off cap.  (90 pts)

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

 

 

Conclusion and recommendations

These are all wines made with pride by families who either grow their own grapes or buy them from “friends”.  The over riding thing I learned during my visit is this region performs like one big team.  Everyone from the grape growers to the winery owners are equals when it comes to producing these world class wines.  The wines in this post are generally not available at you local wine store.  They are available via the winery’s websites or from the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center.

 

 

If you want to plan a trip to Lodi, which I highly recommend, your first step should be to visit the Lodi Wine Site.  If you find yourself in Lodi and want to sip some wine, buy some wine or look for recommendations, I encourage you to visit them at:

Lodi Wine & Visitor Center

2545 West Turner Road

Lodi, CA 95242

Phone: (209) 367-4727

Email: lwwc@lodiwine.com

 

This is also a great place to buy Lodi wines.  They have an extensive inventory of wines that you can have shipped to your home.

 

 

 

 

Lodi Information

Lodi is just east of San Francisco and has provided grapes for producers all over the world since the 1800’s.  The Lodi area has provided grapes for producers all over the world for decades, and many families in Lodi have been growing grapes for six and seven generations.  Today, there are approximately 85 wineries and tasting rooms, over 750 growers and more than 100,000 acres planted to vineyards.  The wines we tasted commemorate the heritage of Lodi and are not only exquisite, but tell a narrative.

 

It is a well-known fact that Lodi is predominantly a red wine region, proudly holding the self-proclaimed title of “Zinfandel Capital of the World”.  What is lesser known is that Lodi’s unique Mediterranean climate allows for over 75 different varietals to thrive.

 

Tons of great and useful information is available on the Wines of Lodi, LOCA website.  I highly encourage you to read about the area by clicking here.  You can also follow Lodi on Twitter at @Lodi_Wine.

 

 

Lodi Green Program

The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program.  Originally launched in 2005, over the past two years the program went through and extensive review to update and make standards more rigorous.

 

The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.  This allows us to produce higher quality wines more reflective of the places and people that grow them.  It gives you the opportunity to promote responsible farming by enjoying the great wines from these vineyards.

 

When you drink a certified sustainably grown Lodi wine, you are supporting a farmer, a vintner, and a community that embraces its responsibility to take care of the environment.

 

Visit the Lodi Certified Green site for more information on the region’s sustainable winegrowing.

 

 

 

 

Calhoun & Company enjoys a diverse portfolio of wine and spirits clients. From family owned to corporate managed, luxury to everyday priced, small lot wines to nationally distributed, Napa to Oporto, we thrive on the varied media opportunities each of these categories presents. We are exceptionally proud of the breadth and depth of our practice, as illustrated by this partial list of brands we have worked with over the past 13 years.  For more information, visit their website.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

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!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – Lodi Wines Vol 2

 

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc Lodi

2013 Turley Zinfandel Kirschenmann

2013 Mettler Family Vineyards Zinfandel Old Vine Epicenter

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rose

2014 Acquiesce Roussanne

2014 Oak Farm Vineyards Barbera

2014 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

2014 Bokisch Vineyards Albariño Terra Alta Vineyard

 

 

 

These are mostly wines that I purchased, a few were samples that were provided to me.  I have the samples clearly stated as samples.  Some were from my cellar, some were purchased during my recent tour of Lodi and some were purchased after I returned.  I write about wines but I am also a collector and wine consumer.  I may write about some wines that are provided to me but I buy the wines I want to drink.  Here are some of the wines from Lodi that are now part of my cellar.

 

This is my second post on Lodi Wines.  If you missed my previous post, it is available by clicking here.

 

 

 

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard – $25.60

Michael McCay and his family moved to Lodi in the mid 1980s.  He started making wine in 1994 and launched McCay Cellars in 2007.

 

This is 100% Grenache that utilized a “native yeast” fermentation and that was aged in neutral oak.  A total of 178 cases were produced.

 

Much more information is on the winery’s website.

 

The wine is a light, translucent ruby red color.  The entrancing nose has raspberries, crushed stone minerals, warm baking spices, plums, white pepper, dry underbrush, fresh flowers and charred wood.  This has medium to full body with medium tannins and great acidity.  On the palate tart berries, white pepper, minerals and under ripe plums quickly grab your attention with baking spices and a nice floral note coming in later.  The finish has very good length with tart cherries and charred wood providing nice depth.  This is on the young side but already tastes great.  This has good balance and is not on the highly extracted/over ripe side of the line.  An outstanding effort!  This tastes more like a Rhone wine than one from the new world.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

2013 McCay Cellars Grenache Abba Vineyard

 

 

 

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc Lodi – $19.20

Susan Tipton is the Owner/Winemaker for Acquiesce Winery.  The winery’s vines were sourced from the famous French Châteauneuf du Pape estate, Château de Beaucastel.  The winery produces almost all white wines with only one exception, a delicious rosé.  These are all small batch, hard to find wines.  The best sources for Susan’s wines are direct from the winery or from the Lodi Wine & Visitor Center.  See below for info on the Center.

 

Much more information is available on the winery’s site.

 

The wine is a pale yellow with a slight green tint.  The captivating nose has apples, melons, leafy herbs, orange blossoms, white peach, dusty minerals, lemon zest and a hint of roasted nuts.  This has medium body with a creamy texture and crisp acidity.  On the palate apples, under ripe melons, minerals and leafy herbs jump out quickly on the front end with orange blossoms slipping in on the back end.  The finish has good length with lemon zest and a nice, slightly bitter roasted nut element adding nice depth.  This is easy to sip and shows great balance and complexity.  Another great, crisp white wine from Lodi.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the stylish bottle is closed with an agglomerated cork.  (92 pts)

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc Lodi

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc Lodi

 

 

 

2013 Turley Zinfandel Kirschenmann – $32.00

If you have not been living under a rock for the last couple of decades, you should know Turley Winery.  Turley is one of the first “cult” wineries in California.  The wines are mainly sold via a mailing list but I have seen some of the wines in retail stores.  A lot of people are surprised to know Turley produces a wine from Lodi.  It really shouldn’t come as too big of a surprise since this vineyard that was originally planted in 1915 is now owned by Tegan and Olivia Passalacqua.  Tegan is the winemaker for Turley.

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The nose doesn’t lead you to think Zinfandel, this has raspberries, plums, scorched earth, dried herbs, dusty minerals, baking spices, violets and vanilla.  This has a full body with moderate tannins and decent acidity.  Berries, plums, scorched earth and minerals quickly coat your palate with baking spices and vanilla coming in later.  The finish has good length with a touch of black pepper and dried leafy herbs providing depth.  This may not be easily identifiable as a Zinfandel, but it easy to recognize the wine as being very tasty and enjoyable.  I wouldn’t stash this one away for more than another couple of years.  This has 15.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90pts)

2013 Turley Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard Lodi

2013 Turley Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard Lodi

 

 

 

2013 Mettler Family Vineyards Zinfandel Old Vine Epicenter – SRP $19.99

This was a sample provided by the winery, Lodi Wine & Visitor Center and Calhoun & Company.

 

The Mettler Family is one of the oldest farming families in the region.  The Mettlers have roots in the wine industry dating back to the 1770s and they have been growing wine grapes in the Lodi appellation since the late 1800s when their first Lodi vineyards were planted.

 

This is a blend of 85% Zinfandel, 10% Petite Sirah, 3% Cabernet Franc and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon.  The wine was aged for 18 months in 70% American and 30% French oak; 60% new barrels.  There were 7,186 cases produced.

 

Much more information on their history and wines is available on their website.

 

The wine is a deep maroon color.  The big and bold nose has blackberries, dark chocolate, toasty oak, black peppercorns, licorice, tobacco, cola, dusty minerals and dried leafy herbs.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and decent acidity.  On the palate crushed berries, dark chocolate and toasty oak quickly take control on the front end with tobacco, black pepper and dusty minerals coming in on the back end.  The finish has nice length with dried herbs and dark chocolate providing nice balance to the rich berries.  This is a big, rich and bold Zinfandel that pushes the ripeness and demands hearty food.  This has 15.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (89 pts)

2013 Mettler Family Vineyards Zinfandel Old Vine Epicenter

2013 Mettler Family Vineyards Zinfandel Old Vine Epicenter

 

 

 

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rosé – $14.40

I couldn’t find much information on the winery online.  I assume I’m just looking in the wrong places.

 

The wine is a light pink salmon color.  The soft and laid back nose has cherries, strawberries, stony minerals, orange blossoms, white peach and lemongrass.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and seems to be totally dry.  On the palate bright red fruit, minerals and white peach jump out on the front end with lemongrass and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with mineral and red fruit.  The is a very flavorful and balanced rosé that pairs nicely with a light meal but also excels sipping on its’ own on a sunny day.  This has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (90 pts)

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a'Campo Old Vine Rosé

2015 Azienda Bologna Cinsault a’Campo Old Vine Rosé

 

 

 

2014 Acquiesce Roussanne – $21.60

Acquiesce Winery is Lodi’s only winery that is dedicated to white wines, though they do produce an occasional rosé.  If you visit their website and check out the wines they produce, the first thing you’ll notice is that all their wines are made with the traditional Rhone grapes.  No chardonnay or sauvignon blanc wines here.  Instead, you will find Roussanne, Viognier, Picpoul Blanc and Grenache Blanc.  The second thing you’ll notice is their bottles.  Again, they are different and distinctive.

 

There is nothing wrong about being predictable other than being predictable and boring.  I love wineries that think outside the box and are distinctive.  Being different and distinctive is only a good thing if you are good at it, and Acquiesce excels at what they do.

 

Much more information is available on the winery’s website.

 

The wine is a light yellow color.  The exotic nose has apples, melons, banana, orange blossoms, spice and wet stones.  This has medium body with nice acidity.  On the palate this creamy textured wine has tart apples, melons and spice on the front end with orange blossoms and citrus zest coming in on the back end.  The finish has very nice length with stony minerals providing depth.  This would be perfect with a light lunch on a sunny day.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (89 pts)

2014 Acquiesce Roussanne

2014 Acquiesce Roussanne

 

 

 

2014 Oak Farm Vineyards Barbera – SRP $25

This was a sample provided by the winery, Lodi Wine & Visitor Center and Calhoun & Company.

 

When I visited Lodi with a group of fellow bloggers in late September, one of the highlights was a tasting of Lodi produced Barbera wines.  These were all high quality, distinctive wines with considerable merit.  Oak Farm was one of the wines we tasted and I looked forward to being able to spend an evening with a bottle of their wine.

 

Oak Farm Vineyards is a beautiful winery that specializes in small lot/premium wines.  If you ever make it to the region, I highly encourage a visit.  A visit with Dan Panella the Owner/Winemaker and Chad Joseph the Head Winemaker will be an informative and tasty experience.  More information is available on their website.

 

The wine is a deep garnet red color.  The very inviting nose has black cherries, crushed stone minerals, dry underbrush, warm baking spices and dead wood embers.  This has medium to full body with soft tannins and great acidity.  On the palate cherries, spice and minerals jump out on the front end with underbrush and charred wood coming in on the back end.  The finish has good length with the cherries and spice lingering nicely.  This has great balance and it very easy to enjoy.  I really liked this wine, a great job!  This has 14.9% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2014 Oak Farm Vineyards Barbera Lodi

2014 Oak Farm Vineyards Barbera Lodi

 

 

 

2014 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine – $18.38

In Italian, “Macchia” means “the spot”.  After a visit to the winery, especially their tasting area, you will agree.

 

Macchia is owned by the husband and wife team of Tim and Lani Holdener.  The winery started operations in 2001 using grapes they sourced from California’s premium vineyards.  The winery specializes in Zinfandels, they produce 7 or more different Zins.  They also produce some very nice wines from Italian varietals.  Tim is one of the “characters” in the region.  He always seems to be smiling and have a joke or gag ready.  The first time I met him, he was walking around on the dusty road we were having a tasting wearing a “tuxedo T-shirt”.  Much more information on the winery is, of course, available on their website.

 

A potential source for Macchia wines is Total Wine.  I know my local store carries a few of their wines, including this one.

 

The wine is a deep garnet color.  The open and bold nose has blackberries, baking spices, black pepper, licorice, scorched earth, dried wildflowers, plums, dusty minerals, cherries and vanilla bean.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate blackberries, black pepper, scorched earth and baking spices quickly take control with plums and vanilla coming in later.  The finish has nice length with cherries and a dried floral note providing good depth.  This is big and rich with plenty of fruit and enough savory elements to provide some complexity and depth.  I wouldn’t stash this one in the back of the cellar, I’d probably open this one over the next two to three years or the alcohol may start poking through.  This has 15.7% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2014 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

2014 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

 

 

 

2014 Bokisch Vineyards Albariño Terra Alta Vineyard – $16.20

I was a fan of Bokisch wines before I met Marcus Bokisch and visited the winery.  Afterwards, my love and appreciation went up even more.  Marcus is one of the most knowledgeable and well spoken people I have ever met.  If you ever make it to Lodi, Bokisch is a “must stop”.  If Marcus is there, ask him about “fairy shrimp and vernal pools”.   Marcus and Winemaker Elyse Egan Perry are a top notch team producing world class wines.

 

Much more information, including recipes from Liz Bokisch, is available on their website.

 

The wine is a light yellow color.  The very appealing nose has apples, orange blossoms, lime zest, crushed stone minerals and a hint of white pepper.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate tart apples, lime zest and orange blossoms quickly grab your attention with minerals and orange zest coming in on the back end.  The finish has very nice length with just a hint of white pepper adding nice depth before the mouthwatering citrusy acidity forces another sip.  This has great balance and is a world-class Albariño.  I really like this wine.  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (93 pts)

2014 Bokisch Vineyards Albariño Terra Alta Vineyard

2014 Bokisch Vineyards Albariño Terra Alta Vineyard

 

 

 

Conclusion and recommendations

These are all wines made with pride by families that either grow their own grapes of buy them from “friends”.  The over riding thing I learned during my visit is this region performs like one big team.  Everyone from the grape growers to the winery owners are equals when it comes to producing these world class wines.

 

 

If you want to plan a trip to Lodi, which I highly recommend, your first step should be to visit the Lodi Wine Site.  If you find yourself in Lodi and want to sip some wine, buy some wine or look for recommendations, I encourage you to visit them at:

Lodi Wine & Visitor Center

2545 West Turner Road

Lodi, CA 95242

Phone: (209) 367-4727

Email: lwwc@lodiwine.com

 

This is also a great place to buy Lodi wines.  They have an extensive inventory of wines that you can have shipped to your home.

 

 

 

loca_logo-enclosure_cmyk

 

 

Lodi Information

Lodi is just east of San Francisco and has provided grapes for producers all over the world since the 1800’s.  The Lodi area has provided grapes for producers all over the world for decades, and many families in Lodi have been growing grapes for six and seven generations.  Today, there are approximately 85 wineries and tasting rooms, over 750 growers and more than 100,000 acres planted to vineyards.  The wines we tasted commemorate the heritage of Lodi and are not only exquisite, but tell a narrative.

 

It is a well-known fact that Lodi is predominantly a red wine region, proudly holding the self-proclaimed title of “Zinfandel Capital of the World”.  What is lesser known is that Lodi’s unique Mediterranean climate allows for over 75 different varietals to thrive.

 

Tons of great and useful information is available on the Wines of Lodi, LOCA website.  I highly encourage you to read about the area by clicking here.  You can also follow Lodi on Twitter at @Lodi_Wine.

 

 

Lodi Green Program

The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program.  Originally launched in 2005, over the past two years the program went through and extensive review to update and make standards more rigorous.

 

The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.  This allows us to produce higher quality wines more reflective of the places and people that grow them.  It gives you the opportunity to promote responsible farming by enjoying the great wines from these vineyards.

 

When you drink a certified sustainably grown Lodi wine, you are supporting a farmer, a vintner, and a community that embraces its responsibility to take care of the environment.

 

Visit the Lodi Certified Green site for more information on the region’s sustainable winegrowing.

 

 

 

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Calhoun & Company enjoys a diverse portfolio of wine and spirits clients. From family owned to corporate managed, luxury to everyday priced, small lot wines to nationally distributed, Napa to Oporto, we thrive on the varied media opportunities each of these categories presents. We are exceptionally proud of the breadth and depth of our practice, as illustrated by this partial list of brands we have worked with over the past 13 years.  For more information, visit their website.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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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Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

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Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

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Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

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!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – Wines of Lodi

 

 

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Petit Verdot Inkblot

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

2014 McCay Cellars Viognier

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

2015 LangeTwins Sangiovese Rosé

2013 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

2013 St. Amant Winery Zinfandel Old Vines Mohr-Fry Ranch Vineyard

2012 Harney Lane Zinfandel Old Vine Lizzy James Vineyard

 

 

These are all wines I purchased, none are samples that were provided to me.  Some were from my cellar, some were purchased during my recent tour of Lodi and some were purchased after I returned home.  I may write about wines but I am also a collector and wine consumer.  I may write about some wines that are provided to me but I buy the wines I want to drink.  Here are some of the wines from Lodi that are now part of my cellar.  The prices noted are what I paid without tax or shipping.  Most of the wines were discounted due to case or multi-case purchases, or store related percentage off coupons from Total Wine.

 

Some of the bloggers have already posted blogs on our visit to the area.  I’m sure there will be more posted in the coming weeks, a few will be from me.  For this post, I wanted to highlight a few of the world class wines bearing the Lodi name on the label.

 

 

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Petit Verdot Inkblot – $33.24

This is a wine I tasted during a visit to the winery as part of a group of bloggers with Snooth and the Lodi Wine organization.  I liked it enough to include a few bottles in a case of Lodi wines purchased when I returned back home.  For more information, visit the Michael-David Winery website.

 

This wine has a “touch” of Petite Sirah included with the Petit Verdot.  The grapes for this wine came from Jon Wetmore’s vineyard on the northeast side of Lodi.  This wine is always put into new barrels early in the harvest season due to the high level of tannin, color and concentration.  The wine was aged 19 months in French oak.  This is the first varietal bottling of Petit Verdot by the winery, there are very few other Lodi wineries producing Petit Verdot labeled wines.

 

The wine is a deep, dark maroon color.  The impressive nose has crushed berries, baking spices, licorice, black cherries, dusty minerals, dark chocolate, scorched earth and a touch of cedar.  This full bodied wine has moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate loads of crushed berries, baking spices and dusty minerals grab control on the front end with licorice, black cherries and scorched earth coming in later.  The long finish is full of berries, spice and a touch of cedar.  This is an impressive Petit Verdot.  The wine has 14.8% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Petit Verdot Inkblot

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Petit Verdot Inkblot

 

 

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann – $28.00

I have been on the Bedrock mailing list since the inception several years ago.  Bedrock is owned by Morgan Twain-Peterson, son of former Ravenswood owner and Zinfandel visionary, Joel Peterson.

 

This is from a vineyard now owned by Tegan Passalacqua (Turley winemaker) and his wife Olivia.  This is an “own rooted” Zinfandel vineyard that was planted in 1915.  The “own rooted” vines had survived because the soil is very sandy which is a natural deterant to pests and diseases they plague vines in other soil conditions.  The wine is a deep ruby color.  The very inviting nose has brambly berries, cherries, warm baking spices, dusty minerals, black peppercorns, dried leafy herbs, licorice and violets.  This has a medium to full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  This is rich and voluptuous on the palate with juicy fruit, minerals, black pepper and dusty minerals on the front end with dried herbs and dry earth coming in later.  The spicy finish has nice length.  This is a very easy Zinfandel to sip and enjoy.  The wine has 14.6% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (94 pts)

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann

 

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé – $16.20

We met Michael MaCay and his Syrah grower Phil Abba and had a “side of the road” tasting at Phil’s Abba Vineyard.  Just like every grower we met you could “feel” Phil’s dedication and pride in the grapes that come out of his vineyard.  I bought this wine as well as McCay Cellars’ Syrah and Grenache wines make from the fruit from Abba Vineyard.  This was fantastic on the side of the hot, dry and dusty road and I could not wait to open a bottle to sip at home.

 

McCay Cellars is owned by Michael McCay.  McCay moved to Lodi in the mid 1980s and started to grow grapes.  He started making wine in 1994 and launched McCay Cellars in 2007.  Much more information is available on the winery, history and most importantly their wines by visiting the McCay Cellars webpage.

 

This wine is mainly Carignane (from 102 year old vines) with Grenache.  The wine was produced with a “native fermentation” in stainless steel.  The wine is a bright salmon color.  The fresh smelling nose has strawberries, peaches, dusty minerals and lime zest.  This has a medium body with good acidity and just a hint of sweetness.  On the palate strawberries and minerals immediately grab your attention with peaches in the background.  The finish has nice length with a hint of lime zest leading you to grab another sip.  This has just a hint of sweetness making it an easy to enjoy companion to a warm day in the sun.  (90 pts)  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off cap.

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

2015 McCay Cellars Rosé

 

 

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc – $9.49

Ironstone Vineyards is a family owned winery that we visited during our Lodi excursion.  The Kautz family were gracious hosts during the visit.  I enjoyed their entire line-up of value priced wines.  The quality of the wines far exceeded the “low price of admission”.  To me, their Petite Sirah and this Cabernet Franc were the standouts.  I like the wine enough to include a few bottles in the case I bought soon after returning home.  Visit the Ironstone Vineyards website for a ton more information on the winery, family and the wines.

 

This wine is 85% Cabernet Franc and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon from the Alta Mesa and Sloughhouse AVAs in Lodi.  The wine gets a brief 2 month aging in new French oak.  The wine is a medium to dark ruby color.  The very approachable nose has crushed berries, stony minerals, dried leafy herbs, vanilla, cedar and wild flowers.  This has medium body with soft tannins and good acidity.  On the palate juicy berries, vanilla and dried herbs dominate the front end with toasty cedar coming in on the back end.  The fruit laden finish has nice length.  This isn’t a wine to lay down, I’d drink this one on the younger side while the fruit is crisp and fresh.  Open this one with a juicy burger hot off the grill or even better with a platter of cheeses and meats with a few friends.  This wine is a steal if you can find it for around $10.  (90 pts)  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an artificial cork.

 

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

2014 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc

 

 

2014 McCay Cellars Viognier

Information and links dealing with McCay Cellars is above with my review of their rosé.

 

The wine is a golden straw color.  The inviting nose has apples, peach pits, honey, orange blossoms, dusty minerals, lime zest and lemongrass.  This has medium body with nice acidity and just a hint of lingering sweetness.  Apples, lime zest and peach pits immediately coat your palate with richness, on the back end minerals and lemongrass enter the picture.  The finish has nice length with honey and orange blossoms adding depth.  This is an easy drinking wine that would be a hit with friends.  (90 pts)  This wine has 14.1% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.

2014 McCay Cellars Viognier

2014 McCay Cellars Viognier

 

 

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc – $19.20

I was already familiar with Acquiesce wines before the Lodi trip from earlier tastings.  Acquiesce Winery was not visited on this trip but one of their wines, the 2015 Belle Blanc, was included in an online Snooth Tasting and chat while we were there.  If you want to see the session, it is available online.  I bought this wine as well as their Roussanne while in Lodi and had them shipped back home to me.

 

The wine is a very light golden yellow color.  The fresh and lively nose has green apples, white peach, flinty minerals, pineapple, lemon zest and a hint of spice.  This has medium body with great acidity and it seems to be totally dry.  On the palate tart apples and flinty minerals take control quickly with white peaches, pineapples and spice coming in on the back end.  The finish has good length with mouthwatering lemon zest leaving you reaching for another sip.  Another great example of the white wines made from Rhone grapes that excel in Lodi.  (92 pts)  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

2015 Acquiesce Grenache Blanc

 

 

 

2015 LangeTwins Sangiovese Rosé – $12.00

LangeTwins is another winery we did not visit.  The winery was still well represented, this wine was included in our “Welcome” dinner the day we arrive in Lodi.  I tried a small taste of the wine, took a sip and wanted more.  Needless to say, with a large table full of people, the bottle was empty.  I bought a few bottles of the wine while in Lodi and had them shipped to me back in South Carolina.  More information on LangeTwins Winery is available on their website.

 

This wine is a bright salmon color, a bit darker than a typical rosé.  The refreshing nose has strawberry, cherry, dry earth, stony minerals, orange blossoms and a touch of lime zest.  This has light to medium body with nice acidity and just a hint of sweetness.  On the palate nice fruit and minerals hit first with orange blossoms and a touch of dry earth coming in later.  The finish has nice length with mouthwatering lemon zest providing nice balance to the slight sweetness.  This is not sweet but there is just enough residual sweetness to add some body and keep the fruit at the front.  This is VERY easy to sip while relaxing.  This has 12.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off cap.  (90 pts)

2015 LangeTwins Sangiovese Rosé

2015 LangeTwins Sangiovese Rosé

 

 

2013 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine – $16.99

This is a bottle from my cellar.  I am fortunate enough to have a local Total Wines and More that carries several Lodi wines.  This wine and the St. Amant covered later in this post are almost always in my cellar.

 

In Italian, Macchia, means “the spot”.  The owner/winemaker for Macchia is ever dapper, Tim Holdener.  I’ll post a picture of Tim in his “tuxedo” shirt in a later post.  We had a great visit to the winery which included tastes of several barrel samples.  Time hosted a “Barbera tasting” that included several wineries in his outdoor tasting area which would be better called a “man cave”.  The area was outstanding.  Again, pictures and tasting notes will be included in a later post.  During the event, when asked about the aging potential of Lodi Barbera wines, Time grabbed a bottle of his 2003 Barbera from his personal stash.  Spoiler alert – it was outstanding.  Much more information is available on the Macchia website.

 

The wine is a deep garnet to maroon color.  The open and inviting nose has brambly berries, warm baking spices, vanilla bean, black cherries, chalky minerals, black peppercorns and dried violets.  This has a fairly full body with moderate tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate brambly berries, spices, black pepper and cherries jump out quickly with vanilla and minerals coming in later.  The finish has good length with a dried floral note providing nice depth.  This is on the young side but already drinking very nicely with some air.  Load up if you can find this one.  The wine has 15.8% alcohol that is well concealed and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2013 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

2013 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

 

 

2013 St. Amant Winery Zinfandel Old Vines Mohr-Fry Ranch Vineyard – $16.99

This is a wine I always have in my cellar from the local Total Wine.

 

During the trip, we had a marvelous tasting of St. Amant wines in Marian’s Vineyard which is part of the Mohr-Fry Ranch with grower Jerry Fry and Stuart Spencer, the winemaker for St. Amant.  The vineyard is well over 100 years old and produces wonderfully rich and concentrated fruit.  I highly recommend visiting St. Amant’s website and reading about the people and wine, but especially about the vineyards that are used by the winery.

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The enticing nose has brambly berries, charred wood, crushed stone minerals, cracked black peppercorns, baking spices, black cherries, tobacco, earthy underbrush and dried wildflowers.  This has a full body with moderate tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate brambly berries, baking spices, crushed stones and black pepper jump out quickly with black cherries and subtle charred wood coming in on the back end.  The finish has very nice length with a pleasing dried floral note entering the picture.  This could use a bit of time in the cellar but with a bit of air it is already stunning.  Stock up on this one.  (93 pts)  This wine has 14.7% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.

2013 St. Amant Winery Zinfandel Old Vines Mohr-Fry Ranch Vineyard

2013 St. Amant Winery Zinfandel Old Vines Mohr-Fry Ranch Vineyard

 

 

2012 Harney Lane Zinfandel Old Vine Lizzy James Vineyard

This is another bottle from my personal cellar.

 

We visited Harney Lane Winery during our trip.  The Mettler family has been farming the vineyards for over 100 years.  After many decades selling the grapes, in 2006 the family decided to start making wine.  The grapes for this wine come from the Lizzy James Vineyard that was planted in 1904, making this truly an “old vine” Zinfandel.

 

Our visit to Harney Lane provided us a nice tasting of their wines including barrel samples.  We had to “work” for the samples by doing “punch downs” of their fermenting Petite Sirah.  Thankfully there was no mishaps for those wearing light colored clothes.  Pictures of a few of us doing the punch-downs will be provided in a later post.  Much more information on the winery’s history, family and wines is available on the Harney Lane website.

 

The wine is a deep ruby to maroon color.  The inviting nose has blackberry compote, black peppercorns, crushed stone minerals, warm baking spices, scorched earth, ripe plums and vanilla bean.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate jammy berries, black peppercorns, baking spices and crushed stones jump out first with plums and scorched earth coming in on the back end.  The finish has nice length with dark roast coffee entering the picture.  This wine has 15.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Harney Lane Zinfandel Old Vine Lizzy James Vineyard

2012 Harney Lane Zinfandel Old Vine Lizzy James Vineyard

 

 

Conclusion and recommendations

 

Some other wineries that merit your consideration are Bokisch Vineyards, m2 Wines, Borra Vineyards, Markus Wines a sub venture of Borra Vineyards, Oak Farm Vineyards and Mettler Family Vineyards.

 

 

If you want to plan a trip to Lodi, which I highly recommend, your first step should be to visit the Lodi Wine Site.  If you find yourself in Lodi and want to sip some wine, buy some wine or look for recommendations, I encourage you to visit them at:

Lodi Wine & Visitor Center

2545 West Turner Road

Lodi, CA 95242

Phone: (209) 367-4727

Email: lwwc@lodiwine.com

 

This is also a great place to buy Lodi wines.  They have an extensive inventory of wines that you can have shipped to your home.

 

 

 

I was included as part of this blogger trip by Snooth, one of the top wine related sites on the internet.  I highly recommend visiting their site.

 

 

loca_logo-enclosure_cmyk

 

Lodi Information

Lodi is just east of San Francisco and has provided grapes for producers all over the world since the 1800’s.  The Lodi area has provided grapes for producers all over the world for decades, and many families in Lodi have been growing grapes for six and seven generations.  Today, there are approximately 85 wineries and tasting rooms, over 750 growers and more than 100,000 acres planted to vineyards.  The wines we tasted commemorate the heritage of Lodi and are not only exquisite, but tell a narrative.

 

It is a well-known fact that Lodi is predominantly a red wine region, proudly holding the self-proclaimed title of “Zinfandel Capital of the World”.  What is lesser known is that Lodi’s unique Mediterranean climate allows for over 75 different varietals to thrive.

 

Tons of great and useful information is available on the Wines of Lodi, LOCA website.  I highly encourage you to read about the area by clicking here.  You can also follow Lodi on Twitter at @Lodi_Wine.

 

 

Lodi Green Program

The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program.  Originally launched in 2005, over the past two years the program went through and extensive review to update and make standards more rigorous.

 

The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.  This allows us to produce higher quality wines more reflective of the places and people that grow them.  It gives you the opportunity to promote responsible farming by enjoying the great wines from these vineyards.

 

When you drink a certified sustainably grown Lodi wine, you are supporting a farmer, a vintner, and a community that embraces its responsibility to take care of the environment.

 

Visit the Lodi Certified Green site for more information on the region’s sustainable winegrowing.

 

 

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Whether one is just a beginner, or a total pro, Snooth offers its 1 million+ users countless opportunities to learn, taste, share and shop in the world of wine.

 

Members are able to interact with wineries, stores, fellow wine lovers, and wine professionals from all over the globe with Snooth’s daily newsletters, wine search, social forums and interactive media tools.

 

Since its launch in June 2007, Snooth has become one of the world’s largest and most comprehensive online wine destinations, featuring millions of price listings and wine reviews. Snooth also powers wine & food pairings for major sites including Epicurious.com (Conde Nast) and myRecipes.com (Time Inc).

 

Visit Snooth by by clicking here.

 

 

 

Connect with me

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.

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2016 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

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Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

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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!

 

 

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