I know they do not get trotted out on the blog very often–in fact this is the first time–but I am a huge fan of dessert wines. Keep a fairly deep collection and buy–and drink–reasonably often, but, like mags–or port–fun to have but difficult to find an opportunity to open.
This is a Viognier made in the ‘apres’ fashion: Intensely ripe grapes–but typically without botrytis–are picked and the bunches carefully laid in a protected area on straw on many flats to ‘dry’ somewhat before being crushed and fermented. This is considerably different from the fairly-normal methods used to make most of the dessert wines of Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Muscat or Semillon, where grapes are left hanging on the vine for extended periods of time. In the case of Gewurtz and Semillon, botrytis often is present. This is all very generalized and I am not going to give you a full tutorial on Dessert wines. Do some research.
This one is a nice deep straw and fairly viscous. Decent petrol, grassy notes layer into deep, rich, over-ripe tomato fruit bouquet and some wet cardboard. A very nice combination. Fruit in the mouth is well-defined and acidity fights off any cloying nature.
A very nice dessert wine. Wines like this are rare jewels requiring an unbelievable amount of care and handling to produce. Just absolute nectar. 15-9 and no indication on label of RS. Guessing I would say 6-8%.
2009 WESTERLY Viognier ‘Apres’ Happy Canyon Santa Ynez Valley Santa Barbara Co. 15.9