Wine Blog

07 Rodney Strong Knotty Vines Zinfandel ($20) ☺☺

This wine is probably at its peak right now and I can't see it progressing much further. That said it has a subtle flavour for a Zinfandel, gone are the peppery classic Zin style and in its place you have blackberries and raspberries with definite mineral undertones. This wine would definitely rate in the Good Value section of any cellar and would be welcome at many tables as a great accompaniment for stronger flavour meats such as venison. The blackberry and raspberry combination just give it that edge and fruitiness to compensate for the meaty flavours. 

06 Merry Edwards Coopersmith Pinot Noir $45 ☺☺☺

Decanted for about one hour before drinking, this wine is probably now at its peak. Cherry Cola and Rosehip with a hint of vanilla all with a  delicate floral nose. A nicely balanced wine with soft lush tannins and delicate flavours. Merry Edwards continues to create just wonderful wines and even in a less than average year this wine shows the skill of the winemaker. 

06 Joseph Swann Stellwagen Zinfandel $26 ☺☺☺

What a stunning wine, deep fruit from such a light colour. I opened this about 90 minutes and decanted into the Reidel standard decanter. There was about 2 inches left in the bottle once the light sediment started to appear so I let that stay n the bottle. I'm glad I did as I tasted that residue after finishing the wine and it fully justified the decanting. The nose was almost tinned strawberries and chocolate which was surprising for a Zinfandel. The finish was long, very long with that lovely spicy after taste and the warm glow of the higher (14.9% alcohol content. Great value wine. 

07 Mark David Cabernet Franc $57 ☺ ☺

When we first tried the Mark David at Arista in 2010 it was showing great promise. The high fruit content, good acid and strong tannins suggested this may be a good keeper. it was given 91 points at that point. On todays tasting it was clear the wine has gone into a dormant phase, the tannins are now dominant and despite decanting for more than an hour the fruit was very reluctant to show. So this wine is far from ready yet, in my opinion. Lets hope next year it shows better.

06 Porter Creek Estate Pinot Noir $38 ☺☺☺

When I first tasted this in 2009 it struggled to give up much on the nose however the underlying fruit was solid and the tannic structure also firm. Time has been kind to this wine and it now has a beautiful full nose of ripe cherries and mineral earthy undertones. It opens up beautifully in the glass and rewards patience.

© John Holmes 2014