25 June 2012

Adobe White & Pink

I reviewed the 2010 releases of the Clayhouse Adobe wines and this past weekend had the chance to try the 2011 bottles. These are great blends, great bargains, and every year the mixture is a little different based on what works best for the grapes that year.

Most people never get to see wine grapes in person, but they're really tiny--the size of a blueberry or smaller, and with big seeds. It's amazing that anyone ever thought they'd be a great source of juice. The white Adobe blend does a rare thing by employing the use of a big, plump table grape: the green Princess grape, bigger than the standard Thompson Seedless. Since I've never had a Princess wine on its own, I can't say how much it contributes to the flavor, but I enjoy the fact that they're trying something unique. Julia was a huge fan of this wine and took the rest of the bottle home with her after our nibbling lunch of various appetizers: dolmas, pita, hummus, baba ghanouj, chips and salsa, and an assortment of fresh fruit.

2011 Clayhouse Adobe White
Paso Robles, California
49% Viognier, 26% Sauvignon Blanc, 19% Grenache Blanc, 6% Princess
$14, 13.5% abv.
The aroma is light and fruity with apple and pear and mild floral notes. The flavor is rich with ripe fruit and there's just a touch of honey on the palate. At the end there's a clean, refreshing finish.

2011 Clayhouse Adobe Pink
Paso Robles, California
38% Mourvèdre, 37% Grenache Noir, 25% Syrah
$14, 13.5% abv.
This lunch was perfect for a dry rosé like this. Classic Rhône pink with aromas of strawberry and watermelon. Great fruit flavors, a touch of ash, and a great balance of acidity and a tiny amount of sweetness. Serve well-chilled, and highly recommended for picnics and casual lunches everywhere.

Note: These wines were received as samples.

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