The Weekend Extra

Quick hits on a few wines consumed over the weekend out and with friends.

2009 CASTIGLION DEL BOSCO Brunello di Montalcino Toscana DOCG
Medium clear ruby.  Big oak and mellow spice over an obvious core of dark preserves.  Tastes even richer than looks and smells.  Incredibly fruited and with a perfect polish and no old-world funk at all.  Fabulous wine for a great price.

2014 BODKIN Sauvignon Blanc North Coast
Rich glowing straw.  A blast of floral unlike any other.  Lily and chrysanthemum over an immense mineral and spice foundation.  In the mouth, fruit vying between ripe Golden Delicious and Granny Smith with a briar and banana-peel overwhelming whatever “grassy” or “cat-piss” these things classically use as reference-points.  This is easily one of the finest sauv-blancs I have tasted in my life.  Find it.

2012 RIDGE Three Valleys Sonoma County
Dense ruby but not staining.  Really subdued.  Quite surprised how subdued in nose and taste it was.  So accustomed to Zinfandel IN YOUR FACE with SOMETHING overt, and this has none.  This is not to say it is a slacker, it just doesn’t assault you in any way.  Rich and round nose, with mellow oak and rich fruit.  Nothing heady or alcoholic, maderized or oxidized.  I wouldn’t exactly call it *bright* though.  Good, solid plummy fruit with a perfectly balanced spice.  In the mouth, the same thing.  Rich, round unsurprising fruit, a solid background of spice and light briar.  Quite mild tannin.  It is DEFINITELY Zinfandel, make no mistake.  It carries the Zin high-fruit-note clear and confidently, it just does it without insulting your senses with cloying oxidized 15-6 pancake syrup.  Read:  ALL of Paso and MOST of Sonoma.  This is a decent little Zinfandel.  14.2

2014 DONKEY & GOAT Chardonnay Pet-Nat Anderson Valley
Milky bright yellow.  Yeasty with a touch of buttery fruit and green stem.  An absolute WALL of  effervesence and fruit in the mouth.  Sparkling wine and Champagne can be subdued in fruit, effervesence and acid or ALL THREE, but this thing just doesn’t screw around and really, a WALL is the best way to describe the mass of avec gas and rich Chardonnay fruit which attacks your every inch of your mouth and overwhelms all senses.  It settles immediately into a creamy, spicy and incredibly sharp middle and finish almost headed toward acerola.  Bubbles non-existant after initial pour.  A definite sweetness early-mid.  Who cares, it is a wonderful bottle.  Find it if you can.  11.2


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