The Tasting Panel magazine

May 2013

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Page 16 of 148

THE MESSAGE Whether THE TASTING PANEL goes to the brand execs or the brands call us, there is an abundance of news to report, from the latest releases to behind-the-scenes experiences with some of the world's most influential importers, winemakers, distillers . . . well, you name it. Brief Encounters We may not have enough pages in each issue to devote as much attention as we would like to each person whose path we cross, but please note that if it's in the publication, we deem it noteworthy —Meridith May, Publisher & Executive Editor Mendocino's John Wayne PHOTO COUTESY OF PARDUCCI WINE CELLARS Bob Swain, head winemaker at Parducci Wine Cellars in Mendocino. 16 / the tasting panel / may 2013 P arducci Wine Cellars may be Mendocino's oldest winery; it was bonded during the heyday of Prohibition in 1932, but there's no lack of inspiration when it comes understanding what consumers want to drink. In his role as Head Winemaker, Bob Swain tracks down Mendocino sites that render the best expression of Grenache, Pinot Noir and Petit Verdot to create Parducci's reserve wines and bottles Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah under the True Grit reserve label, priced at $30 SRP. Like the 1969 Western of the same name, Swain reminds us of John Wayne in his role as the sheriff who is intent upon finding what he seeks, which for these reserve wines means a Grenache that's bursting with cherry and strawberry lavors and complex black tea, orange and star anise aromas, and Mary Elke's Donnelly Creek Pinot Noir with crisp cherry and cranberry fruit and a savory, meaty core. Since its joint purchase by the Thornhill Family and in 2004, the 100-acre Parducci estate has been lauded for its commitment to carbon-neutral and green environmental practices. Under Tim Thornhill's supervision, recent additions to the winery include a full-blown wetlands habitat created from humble beginnings as a water reclamation pond and a large organic garden. —Deborah Parker Wong

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