17 January, 2011

2011 Winter Wineland

As you might know, Winter Wineland is an annual weekend of fun put together by the good people of Wine Road, an organization of Alexander Valley, Dry Creek Valley and Russian River Valley wineries and vineyards. It's a celebration of wine, art and education and a bit of each can be found at many of the more than 140 participating wineries........from Alderbrook to Zichichi Family Vineyards.

We were fortunate enough to attend this year and we wanted to some 3 great experiences out of many places we visited.

Our first stop was with the folks at White Oak Winery in Alexander Valley. Their Sauvignon Blanc was a pleasant first stop for our palate as well. It's a typical SB with crisp meyer lemon and Valencia orange notes.

Retail - $16
Grade - B

Next up was a stop to see the venerable John Holdredge at Holdredge Wines in Healdsburg. John and his fabulous staff were pouring several of their great Pinot Noir offerings, but also, some nice 2007 Zinfandel that was on sale for $149/case or just more than $12/bottle. It's a non-typical Sonoma zin with more mature fruit and less of the spice that we see as a rule.

Retail - $12 (on premise sale)
Grade - A-

Finally, we stopped to see Simon and Kathleen Inman at Inman Family Wines on Olivet Road in Russian River Valley. Their recently opened new facility is looking great. It's a super example of progressive eco-thinking and building and furthermore, their facility has Sonoma County's first privately owned electric car charging station where you can fill-up your batteries while tasting some wonderful Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris.

Their 2006 and 2007 OGV Pinot Noirs were drinking superbly. We also tasted their 2009 RRV Pinot Gris and for the sake of our blog and price point, we think this is a great, lean, mineral driven  P. Gris with the first fish of spring that we're all looking forward to. (Note:...we were fortunate enough to have a wonderful sunny day that was nearly 70ºF in the middle of winter -- January 16, 2011)

Retail - $25
Grade - B+

Next year, don't forget to get out to Winter Wineland...but heck, why wait until next year....Wine Road's Barrel Tasting Weekend is coming shortly. Get your tickets (starting Jan 24th) and we'll be sure to see you there!


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