Saturday at TasteVin (12/9/17): Cellar Tasting, 90+ pt California Reds

When dining out, there’s always that moment when you try to figure out what wine to have with the meal.  You look at the wines by the glass and maybe glimpse at the bottle list.  So many choices and the bottle list often has pricier selections, some upwards of $100.  You may see well known wineries of which you have heard, but have yet to try.  Should you listen to all the critics and splurge on that bottle?

This month at TasteVin, we’re trying to solve that dilemma, a few wines at a time.  We’re opening up bottles from our Cellar List, ranging in price from $80 – $165.  You’ll be able to taste 2 or 3 wines without having to splurge on all those bottles.

Last week everyone enjoyed the side-by-side tasting of Silver Oak Cabs.  This Saturday we will focus on a selection of California Reds, all rated 90+ points.

I have to admit that when selecting some of the wines for our Cellar List, even I wasn’t able to try every single one.  I may have tried previous vintages, but not the current vintage.  Some wines are more expensive or so highly allocated that they aren’t available to taste.  Sometimes you just have to do your research and base your selections on consistency: your consistent delight of past vintages, a winery’s consistent standard of quality and excellence, and consistent ratings from highly acclaimed critics.

So when you come in to taste the selection, I’ll be tasting right there with you!

2013 Kistler, Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley, CA

90 pts Wine Spectator: “Shows a touch of gravelly, dusty earth and cedary oak amid the supple blackberry and wild berry flavors, accented by a savory herb edge. Ends clean and spicy. Drink now. 6,200 cases made. –JL”

2014 Ridge, Geyserville, Alexander Valley, CA

93 pts Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate:This is a big-time winner in 2014, with copious quantities of juicy blackberry and black cherry fruit, some wood spice and loamy soil undertones. Full-bodied, fleshy and seductive, the wine is clean, pure, textured, and offers sensational drinking now and over the next 7-8 years.” (60% Zinfandel, 24% Carignan, 12% Petite Sirah, 4% Mourvèdre) 

2013 Flora Springs, Trilogy, Napa Valley, CA

94 pts Wine Enthusiast: “This is a wow wine, supported by small amounts of Petit Verdot and Malbec. Blood orange, cranberry, cassis and raspberry provide a crisp counterpoint to the firm tannin structure, ending with grace and plenty of body, smoothly textured and refined.”

92 pts Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: Flora Springs was among the first Napa wineries to create a Bordeaux blend called Trilogy, and the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Trilogy is a blend of 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot and 6% Malbec. Notes of sweet plum, licorice, black cherry and blackcurrant fruit jump from the glass of this dense, dark ruby/purple wine. It’s medium to full-bodied, with impressive purity and elegance. It’s meant to be an elegant take of Napa viticulture and they’ve pulled it off fabulously. This wine has excellent balance of all its component parts, and should continue to drink well for 15-20 years.”

92 pts James Suckling: “Lots of fruit on the nose with coffee and walnut undertones. Full body, round and velvety tannins and a fresh finish. Open and soft.”

To learn more about Saturdays at TasteVin and upcoming and past tastings, please click here.

Stay tuned next week for a Champagne tasting!


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