The SOMM Journal

August / September 2017

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Page 103 of 148

{ }  103 plans are in the works to expand domesti- cally and internationally alike, projecting a fall release for the London marketplace. I sat down at the Moraga Estate with Rich, Director of Sales and Marketing for Moraga Estate Roxanne Langer and The Somm Journal's Editor-in-Chief, Anthony Dias Blue, and Deputy Editor, Allyson Gorsuch, for an extensive vertical tasting. We tasted wines from as early as 1996 to as current as 2015, along with a limited-release dessert wine. Tasting Notes The tasting panel gave each wine a con- sensus score. Moraga 2001 White Clean, smooth and vibrant. Soft and juicy aromatics with crisp acidity. Mature, deep flavors. Minerals are layered, fresh and complex. Ripe and balanced. Rich and seamless with long, firm acidity. 95 —Anthony Dias Blue Moraga 2006 White Herbaceous with green melon, nectarine, peach, and slight minerality. Soft, but of nice acid underneath. The stone fruit carries over to the palate with a little peach tea and a beautiful fin - ish.—Roxanne Langer 96 Moraga 2010 White Very pretty nose. Tropical, sexy and mysterious. The impres- sion of sweet fruit lasts throughout the fin- ish. Beautifully balanced in the mouth. Hints of peach and stone fr uit. Tannins come mid-palate, which are really beautiful and expressive.—Scott Rich 97 Moraga 2012 White Young, but fresh fruit on the nose with a slight hint of flowers. Robust minerality balanced against bright acidity for a well-balanced structure. Leans more towards citrus fruit with accents of pineapple. Will be better in a year or two despite current excellence.—Ryan Ford 95 Moraga 2014 White Wow! Tropical cit - rus "bass notes." Really pretty and expres- sive nose. Voluptuous, round and soft. Good fruit in mouth though hard to pin down any descriptors. Almost slightly flabby at end of mid-palate, but finish is crisp and acidic, attenuated by alcohol.—Scott Rich 94 Moraga 2015 White Rich, deep and intense. Tangy and youthful, showing huge potential. Juicy citrus and rounded flavor. Lovely now; great in five years. —Anthony Dias Blue 95 Moraga 1996 Red Amazing color. Tobacco, cedar plank, leather and dried fruit on the nose, almost like a good barbecue dry rub. Dried cherries and blueberries on the palate. Slightly herbaceous. Velvety tan - nins, white pepper and integrated oak lead to a long finish.—Roxanne Langer 94 Moraga 2004 Red Black cherry, rasp- berry, toasted oak, coffee bean and leather. The nose gives way to black and red cherry flavors, mocha and dusty green tobacco. Soft yet assertive tannins and acid; grace - ful.—Allyson Gorsuch 94 Moraga 2005 Red Juicy, yet with the typi- cal Moraga characteristics: leather, tobacco and cedar. More focus on strong, ripe fruit. Mocha undertones complement the rich tannins. Overall, well-balanced and uncom - promising. The sugar-to-acid ratio makes for excellent aging prospects.—Ryan Ford 95 Moraga 2007 Red Slightly aldehydic pumpkin innards. Softer, concentrated, slightly frontal tannins. Nice fruit, cigar box, leather and minerals. Round, rich texture. Persistent flavor and phenolics carry finish. Typical Moraga flavor.—Scott Rich 95 Moraga 2009 Red Bright and juicy with lively acid and freshness, yet mature and complex. Deep with toast and cassis, berries and spice. Balanced.—Anthony Dias Blue 96 Moraga 2010 Red Nutmeg, brown Asian spice, red berries. Concentrated, round tan - nins, substantial with spice. Interesting stuff following an almost briny, low-tide/iodine character on the nose. Briar, tobacco, min- eral, chaparral nose. Tannins a near-perfect foil to core of sweet fruit.—Scott Rich 96 Moraga 2012 Red Silky smooth. Bold fruit of berry and plum. Mild minerality but distinct and indicative of Moraga. Mildly tangy spice on the finish. Tannins are well- formed. Hints of dark chocolate and mocha with brown spice undertones. Youthful in profile; though ready to drink now, it would benefit from time.—Ryan Ford 95 Moraga 2013 Red Red and purple plum, boysenberry, black raspberry, violets, orchids, forest floor and fresh herbs. Plums, red and black currants, mocha, chocolate cafe latte, hoison sauce, plum sauce. Salivating acidity and fine-grained tannins.—Allyson Gorsuch 94 Moraga 2009 Dessert Wine A deep golden amber straw color. Lush vanilla nose gives way to sweet apple, creamy apricot and white chocolate flavors. Mild residual sugar that has a syrup-like composition. Incredibly well-crafted.—Ryan Ford 97 At Moraga Estate in Bel-Air, California (left to right): Olivera Markovic, SVP, Managing Director, Blue Lifestyle; Ryan Ford, Sommelier, Blue Lifestyle; Roxanne Langer, Director of Sales and Marketing for Moraga Estate; Anthony Dias Blue, Editor-in-Chief, The Somm Journal; Allyson Gorsuch, Deputy Editor, The Somm Journal; Scott Rich, winemaker, Moraga Estate. PHOTO: OLIVERA MARKOVIC

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