I haven’t done a “One Bottle Post” in awhile because I had so much to write about from my Paso Robles trip. So, it was nice to segue from California to Mendoza, Argentina, to use my WSET education and take my time to evaluate a Malbec blend I had never had before from winemaker Michel Rolland.
08 Clos de los Siete
From the Uco Valley, about 120 Km South of the city of Mendoza in Argentina.
56% Malbec, 21% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Syrah, 2% Petit Verdot.
Color: Clear, dark ruby, with a viscosity that coated my glass with voluptuous legs.
Aroma, in order of appearance: Cherry, bell pepper, mint, possibly some mushroom. Quite a delight to linger over and contemplate.
Taste: Coating my mouth, as well as it did my glass, with a nice viscosity, then giving way to a pleasant balance of tannin and fruit that made me question the vintage year – it tasted a wee bit older than an 08. From there I was treated to deepened fruit, more blackberry. And with a long, pleasurable finish, I could count to at least ten before I just had to add more to my wanting palate.
90 Eve points.
A funny note on the foil, cork and bottle: I don’t usually spend a nanosecond here but, the foil capsule was loose enough to pull off without the use of the serrated knife on my corkscrew. (Does anyone know if that means anything?) Regardless, I paid closer attention than I usually do to the cork, expecting it to be dried out, or just plain difficult to remove. The cork came out cleanly, a little tight, but the opening on the bottle was slightly narrower than most. I only know that for sure as it was difficult to slide my wine pourer/stopper into the bottle. I’ve never encountered this in an Argentinean wine before either…
I asked a brand representative about the foil and was told, “Interesting note on the foil – the bottle is a Bordeaux style bottle, which is where its unique shape comes from. While the foil is not taught as you might find on some bottles, it shouldn’t interfere with the quality of the bottling and, in turn, the wine.”
I had to agree – it certainly didn’t effect the quality of the wine! So if your bottle looks like this you now know why!
Excerpts from the technical sheet:
Location: Canton de Tunuyan (120 km south of Mendoza)
Climate: Continental with low rainfall.
Soil: Sand and clay with large pebbles.
Altitude: 1000 m
Transport: Gravity, no pumping.
Maturing: 11 months with 1/3 in 100% new French oak barrels, 1/3 in one year old barrels, and 1/3 in vat.
No fining, no filtration.
Wine Spectator: 08 Clos de los Siete Mendoza 89 points, $19: Quite ripe, but focused and juicy, with blueberry, açaí berry and bramble notes laced with fruitcake and spice hints. A nice briary edge keeps the finish honest. Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Petit Verdot. Drink now. 50,000 cases made. –JM
(Disclosure: I didn’t pay for the wine, it was sent to me for review. This post originally ran in my Eve Wine 101 column in the West Ranch Beacon. They allow me to reprint my own words and I wanted to get my own words out there a second time. One reader did ask where to purchase and I found it at Vino 100 Valencia. Where I quickly purchased another bottle.)
BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND and just in time for Mother’s Day
Relay For Life® Team Check ‘Em Out is hosting their annual wine event!
What: POP A CORK FOR A CURE, Fifth Annual wine tasting benefiting American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life®
When: Saturday, May 7, 2011, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: 24071 Regents Park Circle, Valencia Summit (Arroyo Park/McBean Parkway)
Donation: $25.00 per person, payable to American Cancer Society. Such a deal!
Wines – reds, whites and desserts – will be poured; gift basket/silent auction, drawings and refreshments. Luminaria bags available for $10.00 donation.
Live Entertainment: provided by Fiddle, Sticks & Ivory Plus!
RSVP: by May 1, 2011 at (661) 255-1392 or (661) 312-5372.
Drawing & Auction Donations gladly accepted!
Come out for a beautiful afternoon with friends and fellow warriors! Sip wine and nosh on tasty hors d’oeuvres. Bid on a variety of auction items or listen for your raffle ticket to be
called. Relax and be entertained by the delightful Fiddle, Sticks & Ivory Plus! All this while helping to eradicate cancer? It’s a win-win!
For directions and/or more information on this event, call (661) 312-5372 (days) or (661) 255-1392 (evenings).
Additional information about Relay For Life® can be found at www.scvrelay.org. American
Cancer Society Federal Tax ID Number: 94-1170350.
Thank you for your help in spreading the word about this exciting fundraiser!
I had not had this varietal before, at least that I could recall, when my pal Denise Lowe suggested I buy it when we were at Vino 100.
Aroma: Fresh mowed grass, pineapple and cantaloupe melon.
Taste: pineapple, very slight honey nuance, very high acidity, reminiscent of a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc in its crispness and fruit.
Finish: Only got to a count of three before the flavors left my palate = short finish. But a very smooth, and surprising, back palate for a wine so high in acid.
89 Eve points.
Price: I think it was about $20.
Want to know more? Here is a description of the wine from the website “Snooth”: This wine is produced in the Coteaux du Languedoc region of southeast France. The terroir is a mixture of limestone, sand and clay. Pinet is a small Languedoc village overlooking the oyster and mussel farms of the Bassin de Thau. Although the climate is dry and sunny, the lake provides coolness and humidity at night which allows the grapes to retain a high level of acidity. It is a wine of compelling minerality and crisp acidity. Best known as an accompaniment to seafood. – Description from pjmesbono
Sip, nosh, and mingle at Hollywood’s Historic Raleigh Studios June 11 and 12, where 150-plus wine, spirits, and beer folks will come together to celebrate the 6th Annual LAWineFest, benefiting Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles. Dubbed “LA’s largest educational wine festival,” LAWineFest 2011 will feature the Robert Mondavi Discover Wine Tour, an interactive experience educating guests about wine and entertaining.
WHAT: 6th Annual LAWineFest, benefiting Make-A-Wish, Los Angeles.
WHEN: Saturday, June 11, 2:00 – 6:00 p.m.; trade & media only, 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. Sunday, June 12, 12:00 – 6:00 p.m.
WHERE: Raleigh Studios, 5300 Melrose Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90038.
TICKETS: Early Bird: $45 Saturday Pass, $39 Sunday Pass through March 31, 2011. Regular Price: $69 per day; $99 couples or weekend pass. Purchase tickets at www.LAWineFest.com.
CHARITY: Benefiting Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles.
Special Programs: Special classes on wine and cheese pairing, international wines, and bourbon, scotch and sake appreciation will be offered both days; tickets available separately at LAWineFest.com or by calling (818) 429-6770.
Parking: Street parking (metered on Saturday) and paid parking available at Paramount Studios lots on Bronson and Van Ness. Metro accessible via Red Line; exit Vermont/Santa Monica and walk two blocks south, three blocks west.
LAWineFest was founded in 2005 by renowned wine educator, columnist and Sommelier for the Escoffier Association of Southern California, Dr. Joel M. Fisher. LAWineFest is the largest wine tasting event in Los Angeles, with the dual mission of bringing wine education and enjoyment to Angelenos and supporting local charitable organizations. For further information, please visit LAWineFest.com
About Robert Mondavi Discover Wine Tour
Let us bring the wine country experience to you, with the fifth annual Robert Mondavi Discover Wine Tour 2011. Featuring wines from the Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi, Robert Mondavi Private Selection, and Robert Mondavi Winery Napa Valley portfolios, the tour provides an interactive experience educating guests about wine and food. The Discover Wine Tour is for learning, experiencing, tasting – and above all, enjoying. After all – isn’t that what wine – and life – is all about?
About Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles
The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Since its founding in 1983, they have brightened the lives of more than 7,200 children.
2007 Zinfandel, Steinbeck/Wine Bush
Eberle 2007 Zinfandel showcases two of Paso Robles finest Zinfandel vineyards, the reputable Steinbeck Vineyard and the Wine-Bush Vineyard. The Steinbeck Vineyard contributes layers of sweet briar fruit with hints of earth and minerality, while the Wine Bush Vineyard contributes depth of color and jammy flavors of ripe blackberry, red raspberry with a peppery finish.
Eve: Very traditional Zin nose and a nice balance. All in my party agreed it was the best we tasted !