Monday, August 24, 2009

Italy in the Valley Wine Tasting Event

First annual event celebrating Italian varietals that are grown and/or vinified in Oregon, held on the patio and lawn of Cana's Feast Winery in Carlton, OR. We couldn't have asked for a better day, or place, to have this event. Also included were panino sandwiches, either porchetta and ricotta, or panino with roasted garden tomatoes, goat cheese an arugula, and served with either heirloom tomato salad with basil oil, aged balsamic and shaved parmesan or shaved zucchini with lemon basil leaves, and toasted pine nuts We also had the chance to ogle a Lamborghini Gallardo and two Ferrari F455's. All for $10!

Apolloni Vineyards
Apolloni Vineyards
Poured by Alfredo Apolloni
  • 2007 Apolloni Pinot Grigio - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Yamhill-Carlton
    Pale golden in color. Nose of melon, following to the palate. Sharp acidity, but light flavor. (85 pts.)

  • 2007 Apolloni Soleggio Conti di Val Seriana - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    Nice deep maroon color. Nose is wonderfully exotic, with red and black fruit, tobacco and spices. Some sour cherry on the palate, along with cigar box, and some fairly hefty tannins at this point. Several years in a cellar will do this wine well. (91 pts.)

Barking Frog Winery
Barking Frog Winery
Poured by Ron & Cindy Helbig
  • 2007 Barking Frog Sangiovese - USA, Oregon/Washington, Yakima Valley
    Lighter red in color. Subtle perfume of cherry. Light in flavor, with cherry and a floral component. Light acid. (86 pts.)

Cana's Feast Winery

Cana's Feast Winery
Poured by Patrick Taylor & Dan Duryee
  • 2006 Cana's Feast Winery Sangiovese Bricco - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
    Deep red color. Raspberries and some earthy/smoky flavors. Quite enjoyable. (89 pts.)

  • 2006 Cana's Feast Winery Nebbiolo - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain
    Rust colored, which surprised me. Looks like a lighter aged cabernet. Very floral perfume, with cherry and tobacco on the palate, and drying tannins on the finish. Prepare to pucker... (89 pts.)

Duck Pond Cellars

Duck Pond Cellars
Poured by Cindy Olson
  • 2007 Duck Pond Pinot Gris - USA, Oregon
    Barely anything there...some melon and pear, but I can't get any enjoyment out of this. Ick. (77 pts.)

  • 2005 Duck Pond Sangiovese - USA, Oregon
    Light nose, can't really smell much. Bitter, sour cherry flavor. Has some age on it, compared to the others here, but you can't tell at all, unless it is just past peak. (82 pts.)

Hip Chicks Do Wine

Hip Chicks Do Wine
Poured by Laurie Lewis, Renee Neely & Callie Snyder
  • N.V. Hip Chicks do Wine Sangiovese - USA, Washington
    A blend of 2006-2007 fruit from Yakima Valley in Washington. Super dark in color. Stewed, sweet prune aromas, almost like a port or madiera. Bittersweet in the mouth, and unlike any Sangiovese I've ever had. And not in a good way. Very bitter finish. (80 pts.)

Marchesi Vineyards

Marchesi Vineyards
Poured by Franco Marchesi & Anya Cristina
  • 2008 Marchesi Dolcetto - USA, Oregon, Columbia Valley
    Light in color. Nose of strawberries, following to the palate. Slight sweetness on the finish. (85 pts.)

  • 2007 Marchesi Barbera - USA, Oregon, Columbia Valley
    Deep red in color, almost like an Oregon Pinot from a good year. Cherry nose. Sour cherry on the palate, but very stewed fruit. (83 pts.)

Mystic Wines

Mystic Wines
Poured by Rick Mafit
  • 2006 Mystic Wines Barbera - USA, Oregon, Columbia Valley
    Nice deep maroon. Sweet plums, with impressive structure. Somewhat mouthcoating and lush. (87 pts.)

Natalie's Estate Winery

Natalie's Estate Winery
Poured by Cassandra Teegarden
  • 2008 Natalie's Estate Winery Sangiovese - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    Barrel sample. Dark, dark red, nearing black in color. Quite young tasting, with a crush of tannins, but big cherry and plum fruit, with tobacco. This may be a blockbuster in a few years. Showing very well from barrel. (89 pts.)

Ponzi Vineyards

Ponzi Vineyards
Poured by Scott VanDyke
  • 2008 Ponzi Vineyards Arneis - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
    Very pale straw color. Very aromatic and floral nose. Pears/green apples, slightly sweet, but with a dry, acidic finish. (85 pts.)

  • 2006 Ponzi Vineyards Dolcetto - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
    Medium red color. Earthy strawberries, with a touch of tobacco. Finishes rather sour and primary. (86 pts.)

Remy Wines

Remy Wines
Poured by Remy Drabkin
  • 2006 Remy Wines Lagrein - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
    VERY interesting red! A traditional Italian varietal, only recently introduced to Oregon. A fairly tannic wine, with mulberry, cherry and some smokiness on the palate. This will rock in about 5 years! (90 pts.)

Terra Vina Wines

Terra Vina Wines
Poured by Karl & Carol Dinger
  • 2007 Terra Vina Sangiovese - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    Medium red color. Cherry and pepper on the nose. Spicy and sweet, like cherry candy, in the mouth. I like the peppery aspect. (87 pts.)

Three Angels Wine

Three Angels Wine
Poured by Ed Fus
  • 2007 Three Angels Primitivo Coyote Canyon Vineyard - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley
    Lush red color, typical of a Zinfandel. Quite structured, especially compared to the Sangiovese and Barbera's we've been trying thusfar. Sweet cherries, with some earthiness or tobacco in there. (84 pts.)

  • 2008 Three Angels Primitivo Coyote Canyon Vineyard - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley
    Barrel sample. Showing well for being a barrel sample...but also showing a lot of tannins at this stage. Smoked meat/bacon (!) and sour cherries. (85 pts.)

Viento Wines

Viento Wines
Poured by Rich Cushman
As always, my tasting notes are posted from CellarTracker.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

A Taste of Two Rooks

Corvidae Rook Columbia Valley Corvidae Rook Oregon
Seeing as how Corvidae Wine Co., the new Owen Roe value label, made two different versions of their 2007 "Rook" red blend, I thought I'd get a bottle of each and taste them head-to-head. First, a little information about each wine, and then the tasting notes.

The Oregon blend was from 100% Southern Oregon fruit: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon from Ironbird Vineyard in the Applegate Valley AVA (also providing all of the fruit for the Owen Roe Ironbird Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon), as well as 15% Syrah and 8% Merlot from undisclosed vineyards in the Rogue Valley AVA. The resulting wine is 13.0% alcohol, and was bottled at Owen Roe's St. Paul, OR winery.

The Washington blend is 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Syrah and 28% Merlot, sourced from undisclosed vineyards in the Columbia Valley AVA (check out the Owen Roe Vineyards List to see the potential vineyards used), and bottled at Owen Roe's new Sunnyside, WA winery. Alcohol is at 14.3%, reflecting the higher brix of their Washington-sourced fruit. And now my tasting notes:
  • 2007 Corvidae Wine Co. Rook Cabernet - Merlot - Syrah - USA, Oregon
    Color is a dark maroon with a bit of purple, just slightly lighter than the Washington wine. Nice fruity nose of blackberries with just a touch of plums and earth. Quite smooth in the mouth, although lacking a bit on the mid-palate...Seems somewhat thin there. Tastes of black fruit and some bittersweet chocolate, with Asian spices, following to a medium length finish. A very tasty blend, but seems like it needs something on the mid-palate. (90 pts.)

  • 2007 Corvidae Wine Co. Rook Cabernet - Merlot - Syrah - USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
    Color is darker than the Oregon wine, with more purple tones added to the maroon. On the nose, this wine is more sweet smelling, but needs some swirling to bring about the aromas. A touch of black pepper in there also. On the palate, this is much more full-bodied than the Oregon blend, with big blackberry fruit and black pepper notes. Mid-palate is nicely rounded and not as thin as the Oregon blend. The wine ends with a long finish of berry and dark chocolate. Much more sweetness in the fruit also. I definitely like the Washington blend more, although I think both wines will improve with 6-12 months of additional bottle age, but not much more than that. (92 pts.)

Tasting notes posted from CellarTracker