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santa ynez valley

Honea shrunk the nebbiolo

Palmina 2006 Nebbiolo Honea (Santa Ynez Valley) – Soft tannin and elastic juice, with layers of lacticity. Dead-ish; it’s still very present, but there’s no form or content to the presence. Completely uninteresting. (11/11)


Calzada Ridge 2010 Viognier (Santa Ynez Valley) – This is entirely nice, with fresh, flowery fruit. Not much of a finish. (11/11)

Kalyra as day

Kalyra 2010 Sauvignon Blanc (Santa Ynez Valley) – Sauvignon-by-numbers. A little too big for its own good, but perfectly decent. (11/11)

Brander Harris

Brander 2007 “Cuvée Natalie” (Santa Ynez Valley) – Weird, but one approaches this wine knowing that weirdness is on offer. Leafy greens, pale citrus, lurid pink weirdness, and then sort of washing out in a shallow pool of salinity. Did I mention that it’s weird? (9/10)

[Title pun censored]

[vineyard]Babcock 2005 “Big Fat Pink” Shiraz (Santa Ynez Valley) – Sticky fake plums. Definitely blush style, even though I don’t know what the actual residual sugar is, and I don’t care for it at all. (5/08)

TN: Palmina card

[bottles]Palmina 2001 Nebbiolo Stolpman (Santa Ynez Valley) – One of the most tangible wines I’ve tasted in a long time, with a powder-on-velvet texture that’s absolutely captivating. The nose is explosive, showing blackberries and black cherries undercut by rich black earth, tarragon and skin-like qualities. Balanced, forceful, and beautiful right now, but it will most definitely age. As to the question of whether or not it tastes like nebbiolo: if the standard is Piedmont, it does not. But it’s a terrific wine nonetheless…one of the best reds I’ve had from California in a long, long time. (5/07)