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Showing posts with the label family

2020 Bells Up Winery Jupiter Pinot Noir

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  Rounding out our tastings of samples from Bells Up Winery is their 2020 Jupiter Pinot Noir.  This comes from an estate vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains.  Three words.... It is fantastic.  Too often we have been slightly underwhelmed by Pinot, often getting the "same old" dusty, overly sweet rose petal vibe.  But not with this.  This Pinot Noir is built differently and if this is testament to the Chehalem Mountains AVA, then we can't wait to visit some day.  Cherry pie, tobacco leaf, graphite and forest floor on the nose.  Solid medium purple color makes an introduction to rhubarb, cherry pomegranate and a subtle hint of pepper, leading to a finish that leaves you yearning for more.  This wine should be in your cellar and with such a low production, you'd better act fast.  This is drinking wonderfully now and should for another 5-7 years. ABV:  13.5% Chehalem Mountains, OR Production:  94 cases Suggested retail price:  $48.00 Drink The Bottles score:  94/100

2019 Cline Family Cellars Petite Sirah Contra Costa County

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We're a little giddy over this new release from Cline Family Cellars.  To be honest, Petite Sirah doesn't cross our paths nearly as often as a more dominant Cabernet or Merlot.  But when it does, we are always very eager to taste it and share it with you.  The  2019 Cline Family Cellars Petite Sirah (Contra Costa County) is an inky purple wine in the glass that is immediately inviting and tempting.  Since this wine is very young, we decanted it for about 45 minutes prior to tasting.  The decant opened up this wine considerably and brought forth appetizing aromas of blueberry, mocha, dark chocolate and flecks of mild pepper.  While we often think of Petite Sirah as a straight-forward wine used primary for blending other red varietals, this one steps outside of that comfort zone.  Full and distinct blue and black berry compote flavors explode in the mouth, joined with mild spices, a whisper of vanilla and a finish of star anise against solid tannin that allows this wine to linge

2018 Baldacci Family Vineyards Fraternity

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If you are looking for a wine that pairs with just about anything in your pantry or freezer, you have found it in the 2018 Baldacci Family Vineyards Fraternity blend.   Don't roll your eyes and scoff about red blends....certainly not this  one!  The picture above should really be all that you need to know about how much we enjoyed this wine.   The bottle is empty!  This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (45%), Merlot (36%), Cabernet Franc (10%), Syrah (7%) and Petit Verdot(2%) is exceptionally balanced and a real palate masseuse!  This wine opens with grandma's homemade preserves, dried spices and some incredible hints of earthiness.  It is absolutely full of fruit flavors like juicy bing cherries, ripe plum and multi-berry cobbler, including the taste of spice racks flavors in the crust.  It is always incredible to sip a wine like this, sit back and just laugh at how wonderful it is at this price point.  This wine is young but it drinks like it has been bottled for 10 years.  The co

2017 Pope Valley Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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We absolutely LOVE trying new wines!  And we get super-excited when we get a chance to work with someone we have never tasted before, as is the case here.  This is the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley) from Pope Valley Winery.  As you can see, in the glass what you would expect from a beautiful Cabernet - dark to the rim.  This young wine was swirled extensively and the cherry and spice aromas leaped effortlessly from the glass.  In the mouth was blackberry preserves, cedar, at times a hint of dark chocolate and a very solid and definite finish.  Despite teetering the 15% ABV mark, this wine is not hot in any way, which is testament to the winemaker and time in the barrel.  The tannin was surprising small and soft.  The winemaker states that this wine spent 26 months in oak before bottling and we absolutely love the youthfulness and potential to age this wine.  This would be a fun one to open again in a year, 3 years and 5 years.  At this price point, you really can't go wrong

2016 Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Sangiovese Sonoma Coast

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I am really digging this 2016 Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Sangiovese and think it is drinking very well right now.  This is definitely a great Chicken Parmesan pairing now or you could hold it for 5 years to enjoy more depth and less brightness.  This wine is slightly peppery with berries and a bit of funky, wet earth on the nose.  In the mouth, this light-to-medium wine shows off some gorgeous dried cherry bits, hints of candied apples and vanilla.   There's a suggestion of cedar box towards the end and I think it would be great to taste this vintage again in 3 years to see where that goes.  This is a very flavorful wine and one that I think is best enjoyed with the aforementioned meal.  Great value! ABV:  15.0% Sonoma Coast, California Suggested retail price:  $25.00 Drink The Bottles score:  89/100

2016 Frank Family Vineyards Carneros Chardonnay

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This post is a couple of weeks overdue, but the timing is right considering the scorching heat that most of the US is experiencing right now.  Many people feel that heavier red wines are cumbersome when the heat index is hovering around triple digits and while I am not one of those people, I think some white wines (slightly chilled) are better suited for the sweltering heat.  With that, I give you the 2016 Frank Family Vineyards Carneros Chardonnay.   This is Chardonnay exactly - e x a c t l y - how I like it to taste.  Whether or not oak is your thing, this 100% varietal has just enough that isn't overpowering, but it definitely helps bring the flavors together.  This wine has a really welcoming light gold color with lemon candy and warm buttered bread dominant on the nose.  Extremely creamy on the palate (again, just how I love it), lemon cake, baked cinnamon apple and baking spices combine beautifully and create a finish that clean and extremely satisfying.  This is defin

2014 Gamble Family Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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I was super excited to taste my first (and certainly not last) wine from Gamble Family Vineyards .  This 2014 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is a flavorful and classy blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (86%), Malbec (8%), Cabernet Franc (4%), Merlot (1%) and Petit Verdot (1%).  On the britgher red side in the glass with fiery red streaks at the rim, this wine expresses well-blended aromas of black fruits, blackberry jam, well toasted French bread and pencil lead.  In the mouth is a medium bodied wine that feels polished and refined.  It's really difficult to imagine that this wine is so young.  It drinks like a wine that has been in the cellar, aging appropriately and gracefully for ten or more years.  In the mouth are flavors of the same dark fruits, cocoa powder, mocha, clove and some sweet spices.  The finish isn't extremely long, but this wine is one that keeps you wanting to tip the bottle in your favor.  I am genuinely impressed! ABV:  14.1% Napa Valley, Califor

2016 Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Amador County Barbera

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Barbera, in my opinion, lacks popularity in the US compared to many other red wines, and that is a shame.  This Italian grape produces a memorable and flavorful wine that is incredibly inviting and easy to drink.  The 2016 Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Barbera from Amador County is a fine example of this dark purple, crisp wine.  Black cherry and steel on the nose, this lovely wine exhibits flavors of sour cherry, black cherry, floral bouquet and juicy young raspberries.  This wine would be an excellent companion with braised spare ribs and stuffed mushroom caps.  Very mouth watering wine! ABV:  14.0% Amador County, California Suggested retail price:  $28.00 Drink The Bottles score:  90/100

2016 Hedges Family Estate HIP Cabernet Sauvignon

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Incredibly dark, nearly black in the glass with blended aromas of dark fruits, licorice and tobacco leaf with hints of damp earth.  This 2016 Hedges Family Estate HIP Cabernet Sauvignon is medium bodied and very easy to drink with flavors of dark fruits, dark chocolate, flakes of fine pepper and cinnamon.  This wine finishes brightly and has velvety tannins that gives a welcoming and smooth feel in the mouth.  I like this wine.  The dark colors and peppery notes hint that this is a Cabernet blend, and for this price it certainly is a bargain! ABV:  13.5% Columbia Valley, Washington Suggested retail price:  $17.00 Drink The Bottles score:  89/100

2015 Hedges Family Estate CMS Red Wine Blend

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There are a few wine phrases I've said dozens (hundreds?) of times over the years.  One of these phrases would be, "Good wine doesn't have to be expensive".  And that proves to be true with this 2015 Hedges Family Estate CMS Red Wine Blend.  Made up of a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (27%), Merlot (65%) and Syrah (8%), this wine has a very dark red color with purple center and a very nice layer of aromas like black raspberry, chocolate, dried cooking spices and a hint of pipe tobacco smoke.  This wine is much brighter than anticipated and fills the mouth with ripe berries and plum flavors, blended very evenly.  The chocolate and smokiness is realized on the back side of this tasting and the wine bids adieu with a memorable and strong finish. ABV:  13.5% Columbia Valley, Washington Suggested retail price:  $14.00 Drink The Bottles score:   87/100

2017 Hedges Family Estate CMS Sauvignon Blanc

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The 2017 CMS Sauvignon Blanc from Hedges Family Estate is a brand new, freshly bottled offering that is a very nice surprise compared to the thousands of other options you have.  This wine doesn't stun you with the color, but rather the incredibly aromatic displays of lemon peel, pineapple and pear.  It's not overbearing with lemongrass or fresh cut grass like many of it's brothers and sisters of the same varietal.  While that's quite typical of SB, a little can go a long way!  And just like 99% of white wines, I tasted this one at right around room temperature of 70 degrees.  I do that to get the real feel of the wine.  If you're looking for something refreshing, pop this in the fridge and drink it with a slaw dog and fried mushrooms!  Made in the traditional Sauvignon Blanc style, but this has a fuller mouthfeel with less brightness than typical SB's.  It's a very welcoming surprise and I'm a really big fan! ABV:  13.5% Columbia Valley, Wa

2013 Hedges Family Estate Red Mountain Blend

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Oh what fun this gem is!  The 2013 Hedges Family Estate Red Mountain Blend is made up of a myriad of popular wines.  Very dark in the glass all the way to the edge and the well balanced acidity provides for a tart beginning to a semi-sweet, solid finish on this medium bodied, well rounded wine.  A lot of dark fruits are popping through here and they are balanced with the herbs and leathery goodness that come through on the nose and in the mouth.  This wine would pair extremely well with a French Onion Soup or a beautiful bone-in ribeye.  This has been in bottle for nearly 4 years and you could drink this in 5 years and be just as satisfied, if not more.   The makeup on this wine is Cabernet Sauvignon (59%), Merlot (28%), Cabernet Franc (5%), Malbec (4%), Petite Verdot (2%) and Syrah (2%).  Did I mention that I love the color? ABV:  13.5% Red Mountain, Washington Suggested retail price:  $28.00 Drink The Bottles score:  91/100

2016 Falcone Family Vineyards Syrah

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Syrah is a wine I love to drink with hearty meat dishes and beef stew.  But it's also a wonderful, bold wine that can be enjoyed solo - by itself or by yourself!   The 2016 Falcone Family Vineyards Syrah is farmed from Paso Robles vineyards and expresses some familiar dark cherry and smoky tobacco aromas that are hauntingly welcoming.  I really love smoky wines and red fruits; I can get lost in the swirling and smelling.  This has a wonderful deep red to purple color, and the small amount of Petit Syrah they add to this wine builds the complexity.  The smokiness joins black raspberry and cooked cherries with polished petite tannins that lead to a memorable finish.  This is my first bottle from Falcone and I hope it won't be my last.  I think this vintage in another year or two will be even more remarkable, as this has only been in the bottle for less than six months.  Solid wine! ABV: 14.5% Paso Robles, California Suggested retail price:  $30.00 Drink The