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Posts Tagged ‘Sonoma’

2008 Rabbit Ridge Merlot Barrel Cuvée

Appellation:  Sonoma County

Tasting Notes:  100% Merlot, 13.8% ABV.  Dark color, but translucent.  Blueberry, dark cherry, plum nose, with some oak, but not too much.  Similar flavors, fruit forward; a little oak there, but not too much.  Well balanced, a little light.  Medium finish.  I’ve had a number of Rabbit Ridge wines and liked them all, this wasn’t my favorite of theirs.  Great party wine, would work with a variety of food.  Good value.  A good call for Wednesday night pizza or burgers.  Fun. 

Rating:  3/5

Price:  $11.99 at Beltway Fine Wine

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2007 Alexander Valley Vinyards Merlot Wetzel Family Estate

Appellation: Alexander Valley, CA

Notes: 13.9% ABV.  This Merlot is blended with a small amount of Cabernet.  Color is violet.  Nose is dark fruit, some oak, has a bit of an old world bordeaux smell to it.  Attack is dark fruit, blackberry.  Nice tannic structure, a little astringent.  Very dry.  Medium finish.  Not knocking my socks off, but pretty good.  This is another one to decant to see if that helps, as it is showing young.  (After decanting for 45 minutes, it smoothed out and became very nice, so I’d hold it for a few years or decant before drinking).

Rating:  3/5

Price:  $14.99 at Wells

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2004 Artesa Merlot

Appellation: Sonoma/Napa blend

Tasting Notes: 100% Merlot, 74% from Sonoma, 26% from Napa.  13.9% ABV.  Bought this several months ago at a dinner with the winemaker after having the 2005 Merlot, which knocked my socks off.  Pretty dark violet.  This nose is a little candy, cherry, red berries, a touch of vanilla/oak.  On the palate, the red raspberry and cherry fruit comes through along with a little pepper, some clove; fantastic tannins, a bit of oakiness, but not too much, and acid.  Full body, smooth.  Very food friendly.  Big for a Merlot, but not as new world as you might think.  Wonderful lingering finish.  Delicious.  Unbelievable for the price.  Might have some time left on it too, I might hold the other bottle for a while longer.

Rating: 4/5, 17/20, 93/100

Price: $20 at The Wine Market

A note on ratings:  I use the 100 point rating for Cellartracker, even though my palate is still developing.  As a statistics geek, I know that the variability in scores works itself out as the number of scores increases.  However, my score may not be yours or Robert Parker’s, it is simply a subjective value based on my palate.  I much prefer to use a 5 point (or star, or whatever you want to call it) scale, as it more represents my reaction to wine, which is more simple than a 100 point scale represents.  I like the 20 point scale as the more detailed score.   On this site, I will provide all three, although the most meaningful are the 5 and 20 point ratings.

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2005 Orogeny Pinot Noir Green Valley

Appellation: Green Valley, Sonoma County

Tasting Notes: 100% Pinot Noir.   14.2% ABV.  Cherry, cinnamon, and a little mushroom nose,  some floral notes.  Typical light pinot color.  Nice cherry fruit, some cedar, some oak, a little cola, medium finish, a little spice on the back end followed by more cherry and strawberry.  Nice.  Medium bodied.  As it opens up, it comes together well, if a little one dimensional.  It really could have benefited from a decant for an hour or two.  Pleasant.   A little pricy.

Rating: 3/5, 13/20, 86/100

Price: $33.99 on Snooth (someone brought this as a gift.)

A note on ratings:  I use the 100 point rating for Cellartracker, even though my palate is still developing.  As a statistics geek, I know that the variability in scores works itself out as the number of scores increases.  However, my score may not be yours, or Robert Parker’s.  I much prefer to use a 5 point (or star, or whatever you want to call it) scale, as it more represents my reaction to wine, which is more simple than a 100 point scale represents.  I like the 20 point scale as the more detailed score.   On this site, I will provide all three, although the most meaningful are the 5 and 20 point ratings.

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