This single vineyard Chardonnay shows clear effect of the 40% new French oak, but wood complements rather than overwhelms. Pear, apple, honeydew melon and some tart pineapple are joined by caramel, smoke, and a surprising kick of white pepper. This would be a perfect pairing with Flounder Francese with Toasted Almonds, Lemon and Capers.
Relatively dark in color, not quite opaque. Flavors are overwhelmingly tart red fruit, barely ripe cherries, wild strawberries, and lots of rhubarb. Sweet wood is there, but barely perceptible behind the tartness. Finish is mid-length, tannins slightly drying. A rich food match might pair well, so try it with a well-sauced duck.
The King Andrews Muscat Blanc is, well, muscat. Nothing problematic about it, but nothing particularly attention-grabbing about it, either. If you like the sweet version, however, be forewarned that this is made in a somewhat drier style. The winery describes it as citric with hints of grapefruit and recommends pairing it with thin-sliced pan-grilled turkey breasts.
This was rich with dark blue and black fruit and a floral hint. Smooth, suede-like tannins were paired with a slight sweetness, a hint of astringency and appropriate acidity.
For my 40th birthday I took a much-needed get away to Napa. We visited my friend Jeff Miller and his wife Beryl. Jeff lives in Napa and grows and makes wines in the Suisun Valley AVA under several labels: Seven Artisans, Sly Dog Cellars, and Red Côte.
If you are tired of over-the-top Cabernet and are looking for something with less tannin, you will appreciate this release. Red fruit of blackberry, blackcurrant, plum clove, and berry on the nose. Soft mouth feel, excellent balance, and a pleasant lingering finish on the palate. Layers of complexity. Could be laid down a few more years but certainly approachable and highly drinkable now. For more visit Simple Hedonisms.