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Palate Press Wine of the Week: 2009 Bonny Doon Contra

A mix of elegance and muscle. Surprisingly dark ruby color in the glass. A nose of overripe raspberries and blackberries is almost misleading as this is not a fruit bomb. The fruit is not shy on the palate with some back hints of cinnamon and allspice, but the tannins play their supporting role very well. The majority carignane plays well with others in the blend. The finish is long but not extended. A really lovely and intriguing offering. Try it with roast duck.
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2008 Bonny Doon Vineyard Vin Gris de Cigare – Santa Cruz, CA

I will confess I am partial to Bonny Doon’s wines, but the 2008 Vin Gris de Cigare is one of the finest rosés I’ve tasted. I keep several bottles well chilled at all times. A blend of grenache, cinsault, roussanne, mourvèdre, syrah and grenache blanc, it is perhaps untypical of a Southern Rhône rosé since two white grapes (roussane and grenache blanc) have found their way into the blend, but to me the 2008 Vin Gris de Cigare is a quintessential rosé. Crisp and light yet round in the mouth, the strawberry and summer fruit notes harmonize with the sweetness of the tomatoes, while the citrus notes and crispness of the wine cut through the richness of the olive oil. You’ll keep sipping this one long after you’ve licked your plate clean.