Published under Weekly Tastings
June 2, 2013
A rosé that looks like a Pinot Noir and a Pinot that looks very similar but, oh, what a difference!
Today’s rosé comes in a squat bottle with the wine itself a very dark cranberry shade – the color of many Pinot Noirs! ( I understand that the dark skin of these indigenous Portuguese grapes creates such a deep color.) I can’t say that I thought it looked promising. But the beauty is IN the bottle and this low-alcohol (11.5 %), Portuguese pleaser will enliven many a picnic this summer.
A deep cranberry, red coral color with light bubbles hugging the walls of the glass. Nose of Morello cherry, with orange zest overtones; seemingly an easy-going, frothy delight. But the flavors are more penetratingly direct, light on their feet with good acids on a rather dry finish. Cherry and strawberry flavors dominate with nary a hint of heaviness or mouth-tiring sugars. ( 60% Vinhao, [Souzao] 40%Rabo de Anho) Begs for grilled cod, scallops or a light chicken salad. Drink now.
P.S. Anyone remember Paul Masson’s “Rare Souzao Port?” That’s the last time I ever saw the Souzao (Sousao) grape used.
Nota Bene: The photo is of the 2011 vintage.
At a recent Pinot Noir blind tasting, this Oregon wine stood out among its brethren from California, Burgundy and New Zealand. Although this may be a bit hard to find at retail, it’s worth the search. Tasted two years ago, the oak seemed a bit prominent. But what a supple, round package it is today.
Beautiful deep crimson and cranberry color. Pretty yet powerful impression on the nose with floral spices and flower garden sensations. A wild berry, dark cherry bouquet with earth and forest elements. Juicy berry flavors enhanced by leather, minerality and a tallow-like richness. Yet, it’s overall subtle with a balance that belies its richness. I thought it was a Gevrey-Chambertain! Drink now-2016.
Published under Weekly Tastings
April 7, 2013
Sokol Blosser is one of Oregon’s oldest wineries (1971) with a long history of excellent Pinor Noir production under its Dundee Hills belt. Its famous red soil suits many grape varieties, and Sokol Blosser used to make a radically different, but very tasty, red called Meditrina. Their newest red blend, Evolution, (now in its second vintage) follows a similar path. I’m not sure if Evolution also features Pinot Noir, Syrah and Zinfandel (!), but, having now tasted it, I wouldn’t be surprised. This is a fanciful bottling–sleek, smooth and sexy!
Evolution 2nd Edition, Sokol Blosser Winery, Dundee Hills, Oregon $17 srp
Mid-summer nose of powerful floral scents, with baked stone, coffee and spicy berry notes. A soft, elegant mouth texture with savory plum, cherry and generous meaty elements. Very smooth, lingering finish. Could take a little chill if consumed at a cookout. Daringly different and enjoyable. Drink now-2014.
2011 Pinot Gris, Sokol Blosser, Willamette Valley $20 srp
Yellow-grey glint of color. A charming, lithe nose w/lush tropical elements held in check by a steely “cut” on the nose. Totally inviting with suggestions of banana and Passion Fruit. Very dry mouth entry with crisp green apple fruit and mouth-cleansing structure. A great foil for oily fish or simple roast poultry.
Evolution White, 16th edition, Sokol Blosser $17 srp
Low key, gentle nose of melon, pear and juicy apple. Somewhat Vouvray-like, hinting at light sweetness. Lilting fruit elements on a linear, just off-dry palate. Good acids on the refreshing finish and a good bet for summer pasta or Quinoa salads or grilled shrimp. Most pleasing.