Jul 252010



This week we tasted Emeritus Pinot Noir, Matchbook Tempranillo, Sanford Chardonnay and Souverain Sauvignon Blanc.

Wines From Last Night….

July 25, 2010

Emeritus Pinot Noir – Russian River 2007 – Sonoma, CA $35

Let’s see, what term should I use to describe this wine? I think I’ll go with “WOW!” We were lucky enough to be introduced to the rep for Emeritus on the patio of one of our favorite wine bars, Cru in Denver, who shared a glass (or two) with us. I was familiar with Emeritus from a few restaurant wine lists but had not actually tasted it.  Emeritus is owned by Brice Cutrer Jones (Founder of Sonoma-Cutrer) and all they make are Pinots. The Russian River is the less expensive of their two offerings. This is a bright Pinot with notes of raspberries, bing cherry, a bit of spice and a touch of strawberry and cola in addition to a great nose. There just a hint of jaminess which added to it’s depth. The Russian River Emeritus has a nice long finish and a soft mouth-feel. By the way, Spectator rated this wine an 86…it’s closer to a 90, in my book.

Matchbook Tempranillo 2007 – Dunnigan Hills, CA $16

If you read our reviews regularly you know I am always looking for good American Tempranillos. Though they are far and few between, American Tempranillo can be a great summer red and Matchbook is no exception. Matchbook Temp also includes small additions of Petite Sirah and Graciano in its blend to add a bit of richness, spice and color. The wine spent 19 months in oak adding to the texture. We found the wine a bit tight upon opening but after 15-20 of decanting we enjoyed it.

Sanford Chardonnay 2007 – Santa Barbara, CA $17

This is a very nice Chardonnay, especially at a $17 price point. It has gotten well deserved and consistent ratings in the 88-89 range. We found a fair amount of the smokey oak and buttery creaminess we like, but it is in no way overpowering. Other flavors include tropical fruit and citrus with a touch of minerality and well balanced acidity. This is an excellent food pairing chardonnay for seafood, chicken, or pasta. We enjoyed it with lightly grilled pork topped with a pineapple-mango salsa.

Souverain Sauvignon Blanc 2007 – Alexander Valley – Sonoma, CA  $15

No B.S.here, I did not like this wine at all. The ratings have been all over the place, low to high 80’s. Parker gave it an 88. We must not have been drinking the same wine. The label says it has “inviting citrus and minerality.” To me, it tasted like an old lemon that had been kicked across a dusty back road.

  4 Responses to “Wines From Last Night – Emeritus Pinot Noir, Matchbook Tempranillo, Sanford Chardonnay and Souverain Sauvignon Blanc”

  1. I’m a big fan of Sanford and the whole Santa Barbara region specifically for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. I’m going to look for that Emeritus Pinot Noir though. Thanks!

  2. this post is very usefull thx!

  3. Any recommendations for American nebbiolos?

    • I have not had one…but found this article for you
      Martin & Weyrich, Paso Robles (California) Nebbiolo Reserve “Il Vecchio” 2003 ($22): Italy’s Nebbiolo grape–the grape behind Piedmont’s glorious Barolo and Barbaresco wines–is notorious for its inability to perform well outside its home region. But every rule has its exception, and what’s more, patience pays off. After decades of commitment to Nebbiolo and other Italian grape varieties, California winery Martin & Weyrich is producing Nebbiolos that are better than any I have tasted outside of Italy.

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