Jeff’s Corner 2-7-18

Hello, Hello!

With all the activity lately, I’ve gotten a little behind with my reviews of new releases, so how about we catch up this week and next and take a peek at our 2015 Rendezvous and ’16 Muscat Canelli.  This will finish our ’15 reds and ’16 whites and sweets for the year.  We should start anew soon, probably with our 2017 Cuvee Blanc.

Our Rendezvous is our lightest red wine in style, and thus occupies an important place in our portfolio.  It is an awesome cross-over wine for folks just beginning to enjoy reds, and is the go-to wine for someone that likes Pinot Noir.

Rendezvous is our Rhone-style blend, and in the trendy world of wine lingo would be called a “GSM”.  GSM stands for Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre, the dominant red grapes in the southern part of the Rhone Valley from which this wine is traditionally blended.

Varying the percentages of these three grapes will create wines of different character.  Often, GSM wines are predominately Grenache which yields bright red fruit flavors on the front of our palate.  Syrah adds dark fruit to the mid-palate, and Mourvedre provides structure and depth on the finish.

First produced at Grape Creek in 2010, the ’15 Rendezvous is (to me) the most “French” in style of its predecessors. The blend is 33% Grenache, 30% Mourvedre, 28% Syrah, and 9% Viognier.  The alcohol-by-volume (ABV) is 13.9%.

Once again, Jason and crew have created a wine loaded with subtle complexities.  The color is a brilliant ruby/violet with a bright, vibrant rim.  With moderate extraction, the color sparkles in the glass.
The nose is delightful.  Both fruity and floral, intriguing aromas of raspberry, cherry, and red plum flirt with hints of violets, red roses, and lavender amid soft layers of sweet oak.  I must have smelled this wine for close to 10 minutes before I tasted it.  (Hey, why not, I’m on the clock!)

The wine is lively on our palate, with medium to high acid balanced by fresh fruit flavors juxtaposed by an earthy, well-balanced finish.  Delicate amounts of oak and tannin provide just the right amount of structure.

I think we should enjoy this wonderful wine sightly chilled, around 55*.  This cooler temp will enhance its liveliness and showcase the colorful fruit flavors.  It’s cold and foggy outside right now, but I’m thinking about enjoying our Rendezvous with grilled chicken and sausage basted in a tangy BBQ sauce sided with a mustard potato salad and spicy pinto beans.

Muscat on the flip-side next week…