Browse Tag

grenache blanc

Still butterfly

[dashe grenache blanc]Dashe 2014 Grenache Blanc Monarch Mine (Sierra Foothills) — My adoration for Dashe is so wide-ranging that I’m surprised just how boring I find this wine. Maybe time will help? There’s nothing at all wrong with it…perhaps a touch of heat, but nothing unmanageable…but it just sits there; grenache blanc in weight and palate density but not in aromatics. One of the more surprising, even absurd, conclusions I’ve come to over the years is that Paso Robles — quite possibly the least interesting region in California for my palate and preferences — is the source of the most interesting grenache blanc. And yes, I include France in that tally. (9/16)

Light bulb

Epiphany 2010 Grenache Blanc (Santa Barbara County) – Fat and happy nectarines wearing bronzer and some out-of-date Ray-Bans™. (11/11)

Take a break

Signal Hill “La Siesta” 2005 Grenache Blanc (Western Cape) – When first conceived (not that long ago), this was the only grenache blanc in all of South Africa, though that may not be true any longer. I’ve ordered it because it’s “local” – the winery is, at least ostensibly, located in Cape Town – and it’s certainly an adventurous introduction to the local wine scene. Oxidative but complex…less Scholium Project or Gravner than Kalin…showing old apricot, brown soil, and an old-leaf, mulchy texture. Dry, white and peppery is how it finishes. Points for effort, and it’s quite drinkable (though a bit of a crank with food), but I think this could be a little better. (11/08)

I keep on searching

Edmunds St. John 2007 “Heart of Gold” (El Dorado County) – 54% grenache blanc, 46% vermentino. It should amaze me that wines with this sort of acidic presence can be made in California, given the endless evidence to the contrary, but then I remember who’s behind it. Crisp greenness, lemon, mixed citrus and orchard fruit rinds, with a dry minerality that hums along in the background; a rocky feedback that never achieves prominence until very, very late in what is almost a shockingly persistent finish. Really striking, and extremely drinkable. (5/08)

Roure of the crowd

Jaume Sabaté Mestre “Mas Plantadeta” 2004 Priorat Garnatxa Blanc Roure (Cataluña) – Big, heavy, and sun-baked. Minerality abounds, with moderate wood slightly masking peach and apricot fruit. So heavy it’s very nearly a syrup, and the structure is completely wonky, yet one can’t help but feel that with a different upbringing… (10/06)

Chocolate grenache

[label]Tablas Creek 2005 Grenache Blanc (Paso Robles) – Stone fruit and almond oil with hints of acacia. Crisp apples dominate the midpalate, which brightens and freshens everything before a denser finish of blood orange rind. This is a really nice wine, with more life and vivacity than one might expect from a Rhônish white, and it would appear to have some medium-term aging potential as well. (1/08)