This is a really interesting incarnation of Melville’s Block M. The regular 2014 had some stem inclusion (25%, I think, but I’m not sure about that fraction). As a small lot experiment, Greg Brewer produced a small amount absent the stem inclusion. Fascinating difference. Whereas the regular has a distinctive earthy undercurrent, this one is all about the fruit. Not in a jammy sense, but some really spectacular St Rita Hills aromatics that’s less structured than the regular bottling. By dropping the temp down a few degrees, you get a really interesting, profound flavor profile driven by the acidity of the fruit (as opposed to the added tannins from the stems). Probably doesn’t have the longevity of the regular bottling, but is drinking beautifully right now. — 20 hours ago
I have an affinity for the first reactionaries against the big oaked Napa wines of the 1990s and 2000s. These guys/gals deserve more credit than given for connecting wine with my generation and all before Natural Wine was a recognized term.
Chris Whitcraft was one of these guys buying the best fruit (from places like Hirsch) and leaving the the rest to the land. His son, Drake, took over in 2009 and built out a flourishing business.
This one is excellent and has a high acid rustic murky full bodied tingly perfumed persona. It’s very complete - a full circle. Big exploding sour cherry and red currant. All in harmony. — 8 days ago
A nose like a candied Apple, with hints of hazelnut.
Medium bodied and an explosion of flavor.
All of your classic red and blue berries, high and racy acidity. Long, lingering finish.
This wine has aged beautifully, and is drinking great right now. Perfect hot summertime PN. — 10 days ago
Located in the limestone-rich Gavilan Mountains, east of Monterey. Josh Jensen planted Calera's first 23 acres of Pinot Noir in 1975. De Villiers, planted in 1997 on east-facing slopes high on Mt. Harlan. Third year of drought conditions lowered the yield in ‘14, aged for 20 months in new French oak (30% new). Intense aromas of dark berry fruits with rustic spice. Palate shows tart blackberry and dark cherry flavors with smoky tobacco, oak and subtle spice. Tight tannins, lingering complex ending, very nice. — 6 days ago
Founder Nicky Hahn, grew up speaking German. In his native language, the word ‘Hahn’ means rooster, which is why a depiction of this bird has always graced the label of his wines. Aromas of dark berry fruits with sweet dried spice notes. On the palate cherry and blueberry with oaky notes, cacao and sweet spice. Fine grippy tannins, savory, lingering ending with fruit and mineral tones. Nice value! — 6 days ago
2017 Memorious Pinot Noir
2017 Bloom’s Field Pinot Noir
2017 La Côte Pinot Noir
2017 Sous le Chene Pinot Noir
2014 Sandhi Blanc de Blancs
All Pinot Noirs were delicious. Memorious tasted some spice with black pepper. Bloom’s Field showed darker fruits. La Côte was fuller in body and riper on aromas. Sous le Chene had the best concentration and the most complex profile with hint of wild bouquet. The Blanc de Blancs was refreshing with a tad of funkiness, possibly from VA and a little oxidation, 3 years on lees, all adding to the character.
What’s especial about Sous le Chene is that it’s sourced from this 10 rows of vines literally right next to La Côte but you can somehow really taste the difference between the two. — 4 hours ago