Sunday, October 9, 2011

2006 Buehler Estate Cabernet and 2008 Dunning Zinfandel

Fans of old school Napa Cabs will certainly enjoy the 2006 Buehler Vineyards Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley. Pretty, deep crimson color. The pleasantly vegetal/barnyard nose features dried currant, Bourbon, cedar and shoe polish while the palate is rather monolithic with its dry, cedary notes and huge tannins. No over-the-top kirsch liqueur or melted asphalt here. While the wine is aged in a combination of new American (50%) and new French (35%) oak, the Bourbon notes from the American oak are far more prominent at this time. Not really my cup of tea, but my wife loved it. If you don't want to pay $100 for a bottle of Silver Oak, you can get pretty much the same flavors out of this wine for about a third of the price.

And a quick note on Saturday night's pizza wine. The 2008 Dunning Vineyards Ridge Top Zinfandel, Paso Robles continues to impress with its deep color and appealing aromas of sweet cherry, black pepper and slick French oak. Extremely peppery palate makes it a great pairing with a trio of home made pizzas. The 15.2% alcohol is apparent, but I don't mind that in a full-throttle Paso Robles Zin like this one. Assertive tannins and acidity suggest this could lay down for a few years, but I won't be doing that. Consistent notes on day two. $28 or so from the winery.

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