Welcome to Second Ferment! Wine pairs well with life ... and food, travel, people, work and play. Grab a glass and join me as I explore the wine scene in Ottawa, Canada, and beyond. Love hearing from my readers, so please leave a comment. Cheers! - Bethany

Saturday, April 11, 2009

California Wine Fair (part duh)

Scratch that. The majority of the wines at the Fair aren't available at the LCBO (more's the pity). So here are some more highlights from California, if you can manage to get your hands on them.

Etude 2006 Pinot Noir (Carneros) - Zesty cranberry with earthy mushroom on the nose. Medium body with strong acidity and tannins. Plump fruit finish.

McManis 2007 Merlot (River Junction) - I've had the 2006 Petit Syrah from McManis before; this merlot lived up to the same high standards set the first time around. Raspberry jam aromas, with more of the same on the soft, velvety mouthfeel. Finish is long and sweet.

Clos La Chance 2006 Zinfandel (San Martin) - Not your typical Zin, with metallic, earthy notes running under complex fruit aromas, with hints of green pepper, tobacco and paraffin. High acids and tannins, peppery on the palate.

Miner 2007 Viognier (Oakville) - A crisp and bright vio done in steel, letting all the fruit shine through: melon, peach and banana, with a hint of fresh-cut grass. The high acid is balanced out with a touch of glycerin in the body, finishing on a smoky, mineral note.

MacRostie 2007 Chardonnay (Carneros) - I'm pretty wary about Californian chards, given that they're all oak and not so much on the fruit end. This one was different - half was fermented in stainless steel, half in oak, and then blended. The result is subdued oak with lots of tropical fruit and vanilla. Excellent balance and finish. Definitely worth considering.

Peachy Canyon 2006 Petit Syrah (Paso Robles) - If a wine could have a gender, this one would most definitely be feminine. Sleek, elegant, with lots of perfume on the nose. Heavy, thick, jammy fruit; you can definitely feel the high alcohol (14.9%) on this one. Lots of tannins on the finish, but they're well structured and pleasant.

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