The Tasting Panel magazine

September 2013

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 26 of 162

SAN FRAN INSIDER New World Wisdom from Both Hemispheres by Deborah Parker Wong PHOTO COURTESY OF SANTA CAROLINA Cabernets and 2012 Rutherford white wines in July, he was met with a full house of enthusiastic tasters. The majority of the 2010s are truly elegant, and Stambor's Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon ($32), which was tasted a few weeks prior, shows dark fruit and tobacco, bright, rich, juicy flavors and round tannins with dark spice, dried herbs and caramel. The 2009 Georges de Latour ($125), also tasted earlier, was impressive with red flowers, vanilla and beeswax aromas, persistent and intense dark fruit with supple tannins and notes of anise and graphite on the finish. The 2010 was no exception. (Look for 2010 notes in a future "Blind Tasting" column. —Ed.) A good deal of effort is being put into producing "GDL" in a dedicated facility within the original 1900 winery. Stambor barrel-ferments 35 percent of the blend using modified OXO racks that create, in effect, manual rotary fermenters. "Early extraction and early integration were techniques that we used with the 2010 vintage." Partial to estate sites on the west side of the Rutherford AVA, which is not as fertile and offers better protection, Head winemaker of Stambor is using Beaulieu Vineyards, aerial mapping Jeffrey Stambor. to better identify individual rows. "We're developing best practices for small-lot fermentations," he said. "And our winemaking is evolving around a smaller-is-better work flow." Beaulieu may be a historic Napa winery, but when it comes to production methods and wine style, it's not stuck in a time warp. PHOTO COURTESY OF BEAULIEU VINEYARDS Andés Caballero of Carolina Wine Brands. North or South, both continents are the Americas and, aside from having reversed seasons, there are more similarities between winegrowing in California and Chile than there are differences. "San Fran Insider" spent time with two stalwarts of New World winemaking, Beaulieu's Jeffrey Stambor and Carolina Wine Brands' Andrés Caballero for a closer look at their worlds. Andrés Caballero, who has been head winemaker for Chile's Carolina since 2005, is on a roll. Imports of the company's premium Santa Carolina label were up by 17 percent last year alone and the wines are being produced in a new $10-million facility in the Cachapoal Valley. With 80 percent of the brand's U.S. sales now in the Reserva and up categories, all eyes are on the Reserva Estate label that was revamped and reintroduced earlier this year. The voluminous, creamy texture of Caballero's 2012 Reserva de Familia Sauvignon Blanc is attributed to granitic soils that lie deep below alluvial deposits from the Rapel River. "We're more terroir focused now and farming using some biodynamic methods to concentrate the rooting zone to the best soils," he said. The 2009 Reserva de Familia Cabernet Sauvignon from Maipo ($20) is a sweet spot for value delivering true varietal character that's fresh and rich with currant, tobacco and well-integrated cedar. Caballero describes a 2010 Mouvèdre ($16), the first from Chile, as "a wild spirit that's tough to vinify" but well worth the effort for its moody black fruit spiced with sweet cinnamon and biscuit from neutral French oak. No Viña Carolina tasting would be complete without Herencia ($150). The 2008 was cool, focused and deeply spiced with an ethereal texture; a world-class Carmenère from Peumo in Rapel Valley. When Jeffrey Stambor of Beaulieu Vineyards hosted the Rutherford Dust Society tasting of Rutherford 2010 26  /  the tasting panel  /  september 2013 TP0913_001-33.indd 26 8/22/13 9:16 PM

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - September 2013