Corvidae “The Keeper” Cabernet Franc (2012)

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20141112_204035Corvidae “The Keeper” 

Cabernet Franc

YEAR: 2012

REGION: US: Washington State: Columbia Valley

AVERAGE RETAIL: $15 

What they say about it:

“The Keeper is an incredible value; it’s plush and full-bodied, and is approachable now but will age beautifully. Perfectly ripened grapes give this wine notes of savory spices, cigar box and black fruits. On the palate, a rich mouthful of blackberry, cassis and black tea commingle with a velvety, luscious mouthfeel and a long, generous finish.”

What I say about it:

Keeping with my Fall related wine picks, I stumbled on “The Keeper” from Corvidae with it’s bold label featuring a red eyed raven and had to give it a try. I don’t drink Cabernet Franc that often. No particular reason why and after trying “The Keeper” I need to try more.

So out of the bottle and into the glass….

“The Keeper” is a big lush wine with a garnet to plum color. Short legs in the glass but very bright and clean. The nose is full of fruit, cherries, blackberries with a smoky note and spice, particularly clove with some oak. The taste is equally big and full of plums, Bing Cherries, fresh ripe fruit with slight oak. I also noted a slight peat, moss and earthiness with some cocoa. The finish is very long and there is a lingering velvety quality. Very soft and well balanced fruit. Complex yet clean.

“The Keeper” will match great with Chevre and other goat cheeses as well as Aged Gouda and Parmesan, and a sweet Gorgonzola. For heartier meals, this will go well with red meats, especially any grilled, salmon, and even Mexican.

Would Bukowski drink it? It’s all in a name, and this one’s a Keeper for sure

Overall Rating: 4 BUKS

4-BUKS

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Charles & Charles Rosé (2013)

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20140227_185638Charles & Charles Rosé

Rosé:  Syrah (86%) Mourvedre (2%), Cinsault (6%) and Grenache (4%).

YEAR: 2013

REGION: US: Washington: Columbia Valley

AVERAGE RETAIL: $10-12

What they say about it:

“The aromas pop with wild strawberry, rose, cherry, subtle hibiscus and a touch of citrus, with underlying dried herb, crushed gravel and mineral tones (2012). 

What I say about it:

I was surprised to see the 2013 Charles & Charles Rose at my local market. It’s not even listed on the winery website yet. This wine is one of my buddy Matt Rankin’s favorite Rose wines so when I am in the mood for a rose and see it, I usually pick up a bottle to have in my arsenal for when he comes over (or to drink and replace one in my wine fridge). It’s a particularly good rose that is easily recommended. The 2013 is a slight variation of previous vintages but is no less enjoyable.

So out of the bottle and into the glass….the color is a nice clear pink with a rhubarb tone.

The nose is first and foremost big on berries and fruit with strawberries, slight melon, with a touch of spice and earthiness (slate and crushed stone).

The taste echoes the nose with berries and a slight pucker and evervesance with big fruit flavors: peach, pear, asian pear, strawberries and apple with a touch of citrus. The wine is dry to off-dry and not overly sweet. It has a nice lite and delicate finish that is very well-balanced.

Overall a nice Rose with a good balance of fruit, acid and fruit. Easily enjoyable with BBQ, Asian foods (Thai) and similar savory yet sweet meals.

Would Bukowski drink it? If it’s pink, it will sink (in my belly). 

Overall Rating: 3 BUKS

3-BUKS

L’Ecole No 41Chenin Blanc “Columbia Valley” (2012)

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20140110_225045L’Ecole No 41Chenin Blanc “Columbia Valley”

Chenin Blanc

YEAR: 2012

REGION: US: Washington: Columbia Valley

AVERAGE RETAIL: $15

What they say about it:

“This fresh and vibrant Chenin Blanc shows abundant expressive aromatics of jasmine, orange blossom, and mango with flavors of star fruit, apple, and peach on a balanced, crisp mineral finish.”

What I say about it:

Amazingly, I think this may be my first taste from L’Ecole, one of the well known and earliest artisanal wine makers in Washington state. They produce in both the Columbia Valley and Walla Walla Valley. The later I hope to visit this summer. The 2012 Chenin Blanc from Columbia Valley was a nice introduction on a Friday night. I sampled it chilled to about 54° F which is where I like whites.

Out of the bottle and into the glass…. The color is yellow to yellow straw. Clean to the edge of the glass with a hint of peach and orange to the hue. More mellow than bright yet clear.

The nose had a lot of floral, grassy and ciitrus notes: orange blossom, marigold,with a touch of wet wool, chestnut, wet earth and mushrooms. 

The taste was equally citrus and balanced with a long slightly mineral finish. Green pineapple, fresh white peaches, green apples with a touch of slate. Medium dry alcohol with a nice acidity.

Overall a really nice wine. Reminded of Spring right after a slight shower, the rain on the slate sidewalk of my childhood house. I’d pair it with lighter delicate cheeses, like brie, Dubliner, Humboldt Fog, along with fruits, pear, apples, and figs, to bring out the fuitiness of the wine more. I can also see this going nice with smoked salmon, lox, as well as most poultry, fish, shellfish and pasta in white or cream sauces. Definitely a wine I plan to come back to for return revisists.

Would Bukowski drink it?  I don’t hate people…I just feel better when they’re not around. When they are around good wine like this helps make life bearable.Crack open another Dave!

Overall Rating: 4 BUKS

4-BUKS