Sonoma County Adventures – Day One

We headed out on vacation to Sonoma County on Friday and made our first stop . .in Eugene Oregon.  We had decided to see some old friends on the way thru AND hit a couple of tasting rooms we have never been to before.

Stop one was at J SCOTT CELLARS.  Jonathan superbly produces 15 wines of various varietals.  Our host was Eric . . .he was so vivacious and full of enthusiasm for what we were about to embark on.  He kept suggesting more and more great wines . . . his laugh and personality really made the experience in this quaintly appointed tasting room amidst the production floor even that much more inviting and enjoyable.  They had all of this wine and these great moveable bar segments that dressed up the production floor really well. . .it made it feel homey to me.  And since we were there on a Friday evening, they had a singer and a keybaord player adding to the ambiance.  Truly a place you NEED to checl out.

Our adventure in tasting went like this. . . .

2016 Semillon – Robust tropical fruit nose, light body and great balance.  A true patio wine.

2014 Grenache Blanc – A bit of green apple nose, med body, tight acidity in the mid but balances at the end.

2016 Grenache Rose’ – Strawberry nose, tight acid and light body.  Great finish

2016 Sauvignon Blanc – Light pineapple and grapefruit on nose, smooth mid, lightly acidic and a clean finish.

2014 Cotes Du Rogue – Blend of Grenache Blanc, Viognier, Rousanne and Marsanne.  Very light nose, superbly balanced mid, delicate flavor profile.

2015 Susan’s Vineyard Pinot Noir – Bright nose and a very solid backbone.  Smooth and silky mid with lingering cherry notes on the finish.

2015 Cabernet Franc – Warm full fruit nose with plums and dark berries.  Super smooth mid with an excellent balance.  Slightly higher alcohol level at 14.9% gives it some warmth on the finish.  I’d call this my “Sitting around the fire” wine.

2014 Cabernet Sauvignon – Very floral nose . . .hints of violet and rose.  Heavy body but silky smooth.  Dry but not too dry finish that lingers for days.

NV Sweet Rose’ – Summer in a glass.  A blended rose’ with gorgeous aromas of peaches and red berries.  My comment upon tasting this for the first time . . “Oh Holy Crap this is great!!”  Hope you think so too.  We took home a CASE . . . so delicious and vibrant.  Love it.

NV Siren’s Song – Peaches prominent in the nose, Slightly syrupy (residual sugars are a bit higher) and quite pleasant.

2015 Dessert Riesling – Peaches and honey on the nose, Much lighter in texture than I expected.  Med body.  Truly a dessert.

2014 Vin Glace’ – (Ice Wine Style) Gewurztraminer – Very interesting aroma, almost vegetal, but not.  Tight acid and sugar balance.

2014 Rousanne – Slightly vegetal on nose, maybe more herbal.  Not a very pronounced flavor profile.

2014 Viognier – Slightly tropical nose, a bit of lemon with moderate acidity.  A good palate cleanser.

Next we went all the way . . across the parking lot to

Noble Estates tasting room.  This too is setup in a production floor atmosphere, barrels stacked to the ceiling (almost).  Very open and airy . . .ready for a big crowd to come and enjoy.

2015 Chardonnay – Bright citrus note on nose, med body, slightly acidic.  Good solid structure and finish.

2015 Pinot Noir Rose’ – Slightly floral / slightly fruity aromas . .solid mid palate with a strawberry finish.

2016 Blanc de Noir – Lightly fruity, nicely effervescent.  Great mild texture.

2016 Riesling – Slightly orange aroma with some stone fruit to back that up.  Smooth mid palate, mild acidity that cleanses the palate at the finish.  Had to grab one of these to take home.

2013 Cabernet Sauvignon – Smoky, meaty nose.  A bit higher in acidity and warm due to higher alcohol content and a tight finish.

2013 Syrah – Plum on the nose as well as a bit of dark berries.  Acidic front end with a bit higher alcohol.  Less fruit flavors than I’d hoped.

2016 Ruby – Bright red fruit on the nose.  Slightly effervescent and tingly red fruit flavors favoring raspberries and strawberries.  A Superb patio wine.  Another one of these is one it’s way to our house.

Day one was in the books . . .and we’d made it 2 hrs down the road . . . much more to come.


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