Mounts Family Winery – 2008 Cabernet Franc

December 30, 2010

The Facts:

The Mounts Family Winery 2008 Cabernet Franc was produced using fruit sourced at their estate Vineyard. A mere 130 cases of this release were produced and it sells for $35.

Mounts Family Winery is a small family owned and run operation in Dry Creek Valley. They are relatively new as a Winery, but over three generations, the Mounts family has a 60 year history as growers. They currently make approximately 2,500 cases of wine with plans to expand to 5,000 cases in the future. Mounts makes wine from fruit sourced at their 140 acres Dry Creek Valley Estate. Their portfolio includes hand crafted Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Grenache, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon and a Grenache Rosé.

Gabe’s Take:

One of the great joys of visiting Dry Creek Valley is the great number of small producers. Every region has some, but Dry Creek Valley is particularly blessed with Family run, Artisan wineries making small lots of wine from their own spot on the earth. Mounts Family Winery is certainly among that number. These producers are often the ones that you’ll spend a lot of time thinking about once you get home from that terrific trip to Dry Creek Valley. I’m always eager to try wines from these producers.

This 2008 Cabernet Franc has a classically expressive Franc nose loaded with cherry aromas underscored by leather. The palate is intense, layered, and fully flavored; fleshy plum, raspberry and cherry that shows of hints of kirsch liqueur and cassis are all in play here. Black pepper and plum pudding spices emerge on the finish which has terrific length and persistence. This Cabernet Franc features velvety tannins and more than sufficient acidity. I recommend decanting this wine for an hour or so to really get the most expressiveness from it possible.

This Cabernet Franc will appeal to a wide array of people. It’s got plenty of varietal character and structure as well as lots of up front fruit which is backed up by a very good finish. This wine drinks nicely on it’s own but will perform even better if its paired with full flavored foods. They didn’t make much, so grab it while you can.

Thumbprint Cellars – 2005 Three Some

April 14, 2009

The Facts:

The Thumbprint Cellars 2005 Three Some is a blend of Merlot (57%), Cabernet Sauvignon (36%) and Cabernet Franc (7%). The Thumbprint Cellars Wines are made by Scott Lindstrom-Dake who also makes wine under the Kelley Creek Label. 333 cases of this Bordeaux style blend were made and the suggested retail price is $43.

Gabe’s Take:

Pretty quickly now, I’ve become impressed with the wines that Scott Lindstrom-Dake is making, and releasing. They are distinct, while also simultaneously maintaining a connective thread of similarity that brands them with a house style. The collective tissue is that Scott’s wines tend to be loaded with rich, big, bold fruit flavors, at the same time that they stay true to the varietals in question and keep a sense of balance and proportion.

Blackberries and clove are the dominant characteristics in the nose of the 2005 Three Some. Throughout the palate, huge, dark fruit notes are prominent and mouth-filling. All of that dark fruit, which is paralleled by copious quantities of classic Dry Creek Dust, provides a wickedly brooding feel to the core of this offering. The perfectly dry finish has plenty of earth, mineral notes, dark chocolate and lingering reminders of chicory, in what is a tremendous and memorable close. This wine is very well structured with firm tannins and good acid structure.

What struck me most about this wine is that while it is a true blend with each varietal shining, the Merlot shines just a little more than the other two varietals. It provides the structure that Merlot can when it’s treated right and made into a serious wine. The 2005 Three Some from Thumbprint Cellars is delicious now, particularly with some air, however don’t hesitate to lay it down for 7-11 years. If you do you’ll be rewarded with a wine that is an even greater sum of its parts than it is today. Another offering, and another solid and impressive effort from Scott.

Please vote for Drink Dry Creek!

Quivira Vineyards & Winery Ushers in a New Era

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Wilson Winery – 2009 Sydney Vineyard Zinfandel

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