Summer Time and Summer Wine

JEff_CasanovaWEB2Dotoré can finally exhale. The summer has arrived. Even though the official Summer Equinox is June 21 ’round these parts shit is here already. Temps in 90s, hot tub running, goff any day we like. It is time to pay serious attention to bright whites, cool reds and pink ladies.

Expect a return to Vinho Verde, Verdejo and lightly chilled Rioja wines this summer. Dotoré will furnish an array of Provencal pinks. The Largenex will provide Spanish and Italian Rosés. The Field Mouse is scheduled to show up. Count on wines we have seldom or never tried. Kris-B will almost certainly show up with a handful of Sicilian, Puglian and Alto Adige whites and reds nobody knew from. Finally, we fully expect to engage the HandleMan in a Big Red bust-out before September. The calendar is filling up so there will be plenty to post.

If you are traveling to the Monterey area this summer we strongly suggest you have a meal at Casanova in Carmel. Jeff [ed. smiling above] is the somm who can show you the wine cellar.

A recent outbreak of outdoor dinners produced several notable wine bottles.

TC_Dianthus_2012WEB2012 Tablas Creek Dianthus $25: A blend of 60% Mourvedre, 25% Grenache and 15% Counoise. We are big fans of Tablas Creek. Many estate vineyards are topping 20 years and the reds with ten years age on them are showing a lot of New World sophistication. The promise of Rhone style wines in the Central Coast is being realized. This new pink blend addresses the only weakness in the TC lineup. The 2012 blend has the largest % Mourvedre and the smallest % Grenache since 2009. We find the flavors more friendly and less severe. Dark pink color. 14.5%

Weins-Prum06WEB2006 Dr. F. Weins-Prüm Erdener Prälat Riesling Spatlese $30: What a contrast. Here is a Mosel Riesling with seven years age from a premium Mosel producer. The TC pink has weight and playful power. This Old World wine is oily with a whiff of characteristic petrol on the nose. The flavors are pure apricots. The fleshy weight and the sweet flavors bring back the old Van de Kamp fruit cocktail juice the old man used to drink from the can! While I like this wine and it held up fine over three days I prefer the more acidic style of Monchhof or the newer producers Kris-B has been pushing my way…gratefully. 8%

lazycreek06WEB2006 Lazy Creek Vineyards Anderson Valley Pinot Noir $50: Been sitting on this a few years. Purchased at the venerable winery one of many living obscurely in America’s pot-basket up in Mendocino [ed. like Iowa is the bread basket?]. Ferrari-Carano may have purchased the winery after this wine was made. It is all about the barnyard. Rustic style with Syrah flavors which we would consider a flaw. However we would not go so far as to call it a flawed wine. Vanity will not permit since we paid for it. We had hoped to see more development in the direction of refinement and sophistication. Instead we have the farmer’s best cow. 14%

Next post we start covering the stupendous Napa trip recently completed in whirlwind fashion.

Everyone please comment here that we would like to see the photos and notes from the Krisses intrepid February Piemonte trip!



  1. Wavatar
    Kris-B says:

    Hey, give Dr. F. Weins-Prum some slack. In 2006, the Mosel was rampant with botrytis and acid was severely lacking everywhere. I strongly suspect you were tasting more the vintage character than the producer’s style.

    • Wavatar
      Bacchus says:

      We always welcome informed readers…who are informed with information. As you can tell we haven’t boned up on anything wine in a decade. We need Kris-B on the tasters team. Gets a hat when we get them made up. Thanks!

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