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Napa Valley’s weird and wonderful wines

on 21/03/12 at 10:31 am


We pick out the most unusual wines at the Premier Napa Valley event, from a recently disgorged vintage Californian sparkling to a “A PhenomeNon-Vintage” red blend.

While the drinks business has already reported on the record-breaking fundraiser event, Premiere Napa Valley 2012, less was said about the actual wines that were presented.

One of the most intriguing aspects of the Premiere Napa Valley wines is that the winemakers get to be creative.

They can create blends or use varietals which are not normally a part of the winery’s offerings. Often, the lots get interesting names or have interesting stories behind their creation.

With the goal of choosing the best tasting wines or best stories of 2012, the St. Helena Star and Napa Vintners Tasting Panel met at Premiere Napa Valley to taste through all 200 lots.

Sixteen panelists each visited a designated group of 12-13 wineries, talking with the winemakers and tasting through the wines, and these are the wines or stories that best stood out for each panelist:

Jac Cole: Pine Ridge Vineyards “5 X 5” 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley

Cole chose this wine because Pine Ridge made an extra effort to combine distinct areas and varietals. This 5 X 5 wine blends the top five Bordeaux varietals from five of the top five Napa Valley sub-appellations: Stags Leap, Rutherford, Oakville, Howell Mountain and Carneros. The winemaker is Michael Beaulac.



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