2015 Catherine & Pierre Breton Bourgueil “Trinch!”

I love Loire Valley Cab Franc.  Our wine cellar is full of bottles both young and old and you are likely to enjoy a glass (or three) if you hang out at our house for any amount of time.  One of my favorite values from the region is Catherine & Pierre Breton Bourgueil “Trinch!”.  Each and every vintage, I feel like I can rely on getting a delicious, pure Cab Franc.

I recently uncorked the 2015 vintage of “Trinch!” for the first time and was once again drawn in by its pureness and honesty.  The nose offers up aromas of dark fruit with hints of smoke.  The palate is fresh and light showing off bright blueberries & strawberries that mingle with herbal nuances.  Vibrant acidity and super easy to drink.  Serve with a slight chill and watch it disappear quickly!

($21, 12.5% alcohol)

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Tasting with Crocker & Starr Wines

I have taken part in a lot of virtual wine tastings but rarely am I ever as captivated as I was during our tasting with Crocker & Starr‘s winemaker Pam Starr.  She graciously hosted a group of bloggers and shared four of her new releases with us.  Her deep knowledge of winemaking and passion for wine were not only were evident throughout our conversation but also shine through in her wines.

Crocker & Starr, a partnership between Pam Starr and Charlie Crocker, was established in St. Helena in 1997.  For the last 20 years, they have made wines that showcase the terroir of Napa Valley.  They farm sustainably and/or organically and avoid relying on winemaking additions and heavy-handed new oak.  The result is beautifully balanced wines that truly showcase the grape.

Pam Starr & Charlie Crocker

I loved learning from and tasting with Pam…her energy and passion are contagious.  If you find yourself in St. Helena, they offer a variety of unique and personal tasting experiences (which I personally need to check out soon!).  You may even be lucky enough to run into Pam while you are there!

Here are my notes from the wines we tasted together:

The Crocker & Starr Lineup

2015 Crocker & Starr Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley ($34)

Aromas of guava, citrus, and pear lead into a creamy palate that showcases bright acidity entwined with tastes of lemon, lime, melon, and peach.  Refreshing and delicious!

2014 Crocker & Starr Cabernet Franc ($80)

On the nose, there are intense aromas of dark fruit with subtle notes of coffee and violets.  The palate offers rich flavors of black currents, coffee, black pepper, and vanilla.  While powerful in flavor, this wine is still refined and balanced.  It will only improve with a few years in the cellar.

2014 Crocker & Starr Casali 7th Edition ($80)

This blend of 92% Malbec, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot begins with aromas of black plum and sweet oak.  The palate is flavored with rich tastes of blackberries, violets, vanilla, and anise.  A definite crowd pleaser!

2014 Crocker & Starr Cabernet Sauvignon Stone Place ($120)

Crocker & Starr’s Stone Place Cabernet opens with aromas of black fruit, sweet tobacco, and vanilla.  Bold flavors of blackberries, dark chocolate, coffee, and vanilla are met with subtle streaks of acidity.  Silky tannins and pure fruit make this the stand out of the tasting!

*Media samples

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Spring Fever in Sonoma

It’s official…spring fever has set in!  After what seems like eons of rain, the sun finally decided to shine its warming beams on Sonoma County.  Brandon and I are taking advantage of our first taste of spring and enjoying every moment of it.  Here are some pics of the abundant beauty all over Sonoma right now!

The sun is shining and Sonoma Square is getting busy!

Mustard is popping up all over Sonoma County.

Did you know we have redwoods in Sonoma?  We hiked Bartholomew Park and were surrounded by redwoods, streams, and beautiful wildlife!

I can’t think of a better way to wrap up a warm, sunny day in Sonoma then with a delicious meal at Fremont Diner.  Their fried oyster sandwich is one of my faves…don’t forget to try their biscuits and fried chicken too!

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