Turkey Day Psychout Road Trip

Jimi made it, Large shot it

101 at Gaviota Dec 1 2014

Freud may have invented the id but it takes a Bird and the holidays to throw the id into a higher gear. Basic wine needs and basic family desires were in full run last Thursday. Tribal members gathered around the flame. Drink began to flow soon as guests arrived. “Noshing tasties” were served to the brethren and it was all ssssoooo ggggooooooddd. Thanksgiving is everyone’s favorite holiday for all the right reasons. Traditions. Laughs. Loving. Bowl games. Family arguments. It is a day that celebrates thanks, generosity and indulgence. Just like wine the season can be a mixed bag. The holidays get longer every year. With T-day in the bag that’s one down and two to go.

The Large and tBoW took to the road for a bit of RnR. His Largeness conducted a jazz seminar for lamuchs on the ride up so tBoW might improve his basic knowledge of the art form. When it comes to jazz tBoW is stuck somewhere between plonk and Russian River Pinot Noir. Now he knows Weather Report, Eberhard Weber and Kiev. Once we reached Buellton we stopped at our first destination – Loring and Cargasacchi, proceeded to an impromptu winery choice – Cold Heaven, and finished with a drive north to CORE in Orcutt.

Brian Loring and Peter Cargasacchi make wines that are among the most popular out of SRH. As pesonalities and somewhat in style, these two compadres anchor the opposite ends of a winemaker spectrum. Cargasacchi is a grower/winemaker. Loring sources his fruit from notable vineyards up and down the coast, including Santa Lucia Highlands. Peter bottles his own fruit from his three SRH vineyards. He also bottles his Salsipuedes wine under his Point Concepcion label which blends fruit from Santa Barbara County. As you can tell, Peter is devoted to the region as a winemaker. Brian Loring is an effusive, gregarious individual who in his own words has a Pinot Noir obsession. He has five current Loring Wine Company single vineyard Pinot Noir releases however I will bet if we tallied all the single vineyards he has ever bottled the number would be close to 20. Both winemakers favor the fruit forward style; Brian more so than Peter. Both are purists and individualists, each in his own way.invinceblsun09WEB The Large is a big fan of Point Concepcion Salsipuedes which has a distinctive burnt – not smokey – enzymatic nose. tBoW purchased a couple bottles of Peter’s dessert wine. First one we have seen from him and assuredly only available locally.

2009 Invincible Sun Late Harvest Pinot Grigio Santa Barbara County $25 (Black Friday discounted): Unfiltered late harvest “sticky” throwing notable sediment. Love that! Peter the purist. Golden color, viscous, lush nose and flavor, undetectable alcohol. Rich sweet yammy flavors. A beauty. 16.4%

We found the first deal of the day at Cold Heaven.

2011 Cold Heaven Cellars Mutchmore Pinot Noir $12 (Black Friday deal): This wine blended from three California vineyards was so deeply discounted that the price alone caught our attention. CH-mutchmore-2011WEBHowever, the soft red color and softer fruit flavors made by the queen of domestic Viognier with the soft steady gaze [ed. getting steamy in here] closed this deal. We had time to kill before hitting up David and Becky Corey so this seemed like a promising stop. The Large tBow team bought a bunch of Mutchmore and chatted up the chatty hostess/goddess Kara while tasting the lineup of Morgan Clendenen’s Viognier and Pinot Noir offerings. tBoW was able to acquire several bottles of the 2005 Deux C. The wine is a NV blend but this is the last year of this special wine from another steamy Cold Heaven adventure. 500 cases. We left fulfilled for a wine-country-late lunch in Los Alamos. 14%

The CORE tasting room in Orcutt sparked a small discussion about which town is the better choice for a post-children online career move [ed. he means retirement]. We took the local drive up 135 reminding ourselves we were in an agrarian zone. Orcutt is more “citified” and without a Starbucks in sight. Good sign.

Becky Corey wo-manned the tasting room. Honestly, hanging out in the CORE Wine Company tasting room is a bit like hanging out in the Gold Dust Saloon [ed. down there round Sarigosa?]. Becky poured until we were done. tBoW was conducting the seminar now. The Large got the Old World style wines (Mr Moreved) and the New World style wines (Hard Core).

Double Mag Maya

Double Mag Maya

tBoW purchased the unusual and unexpected Bordeaux blend Kuyama 13 Moons07 and 08. We loaded our mixed cases and headed down the 101 in time to catch the sun going down on PCH. Electric Ladyland was playing as the ocean turned turquoise and the hills went strawberry. It was… psychedelic.

Here is what got poured with our bird the day before.

2003 Babcock Cargassachi Pinot Noir $priceless: The legendary wine made by the locals only Kenneth Crawford team covered by tBoW in the past. This was served from a double magnum which is in itself a special situation. Theoretically, wine served from a double mag should be fresh as the year it was released. We did leave a taste for Peter at the winery on Friday. Hope he got to taste it.

MSChrd09WEB2009 Malibu Sanity Chardonnay $32: “Native grapes only” reads the label. Charles Schetter is quite proud [ed. and well he should be] that he produces all the grapes for his premier Malibu label wines. Schetter is unique in the ‘Bu. He is a winemaker with Old World chops who strives to produce an Old World style wine 600 feet above the Pacific overlooking the Malibu Colony. While winemaking remains a lifestyle matter for most of the 50 plus fable labels from Agoura to County Line, for Charles his work is more like a noble cause. He leads the movement to create an AVA for many after the first two AVAs only benefited two individual non-aligned properties. How does that help the wine community up PCH? Charles thinks and makes wine like a Burgundy vigneron. And how is his wine? The Pinot noirs are light colored and lean like a Burgundy from the south. The Chardonnays are, for now, more distinctive. This four year old bottle is light golden color. The nose shows camphor out of the bottle which blows off. The serious native tannins remain in harmony with the excellent fruit. All steel fermented. Distinctive like the man. 14%

More wines were poured with the Bird, however, this post has exhausted tBoW. Here is Jimi getting jazzy in Electric Ladyland. Large points out this is the clearest indicator of where Jimi’s next phase was heading.

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