In the December issue of Wine & Spirits Magazine:
A Best Buy and One of The Year’s Best Cabernet Sauvignons:
94 points: grown at an elevation of 1,800 feet in weathered volcanic soils this wine comes off dry-farmed vines that were planted in the early 1970s. They produced a magnificent 2007, a cabernet in motion, changing and shifting from red scents of strawberries to black fruit (dark plum-skin tannins) and nectarine-like freshness. Aged in new American white oak barrels and bottled unfined and unfiltered, the wine has a coolness that belies its power, feigning an airy openness, the bass note of tannins held to a quiet rumble. Compelling to drink now, this has the stature to age for a decade or more.
In Dan Berger’s November 21 issue of Vintage Experiences:
Exceptional. Floral notes of citrus, blossoms and a faint earthy note to give the wine a more Pfalz-like minerality. Made with just the barest hint of residual sugar, so it is pretty dry, but so succulent you can serve it with spicy Asian foods.
Frederic Koeppel recommends the 2012 Riesling for Thanksgiving:
The color is a shimmery pale gold with fleeting green highlights; aromas of green apple, pear and lemon are infused with jasmine, lime peel and limestone. Flavors of roasted lemon, lychee and peach are fresh, ripe and lightly spiced, while crisp acidity and scintillating limestone and flint minerality lend the wine verve and excitement. Excellent.
Reasons to be thankful for Riesling: Versatile white grape is ideal for Thanksgiving’s medley of flavors
By Bill St. John, Chicago Tribune, November 20, 2013
The most interesting disconnect in the wine world is over favored grapes. Those who could be called “pros” (sommeliers, writers such as myself, many winemakers, even historians of wine) prefer pinot noir for a red grape and riesling for a white. The “Joes” — everyone else — by and large buy and drink cabernet sauvignon and chardonnay. Although all of us also putz around bins and shelves that contain bunches of other grapes, when asked for what we’d put on the altar, it’s pinot and riesling for the pros, and the two C’s for the Joes. That’s just the way it is.
It annoys us pros that that’s the case because we see nothing but grace and goodness in riesling — the way it so purely reflects its origins and so deliciously accompanies all manner of foods. That most Joes believe all rieslings are sweet flings us into fits. Dead horse alert: They are not.
So, as we all hold hands ’round the Thanksgiving table, here’s a plea for riesling. Soon upon us is the one meal of the year truly like no other. Pretty much anything goes — into your mouth — and no better wine is made for that crazy patchwork than riesling.
Why riesling with Thanksgiving Day dinner? It’s like a squeeze of lemon that lifts other flavors, or frames an edge on all that sugar and fat. It’s a light “sauce,” a wine’s equivalent to a condiment, always enhancing, neither clouding nor overwhelming any other flavor or texture. Its low alcohol and always crisp and zesty character mean it’s refreshing, cleansing and enlivening. Give it up for riesling. Happy Thanksgiving.
2012 Smith-Madrone Riesling Napa Valley, California: Old vines (40 years) pack power into those aromas and tastes of green apples, citrus and white peach, and close that finish with a zinger.
Catherine Bogue reviews the 2012 Riesling in the November 20, 2013 St. Helena Star:
After sipping lots of rich, toasty chardonnays, and opening a good number of zesty sauvignon blancs, it is always fun to see what else is out there for the tasting from Napa Valley.
Riesling has been around from the beginning, having been planted by some of the first German immigrants to land in the valley. Upon arrival, they took to the hills, in places like Spring Mountain, where the finest grapes were grown back home.
If you want to know what all the hubbub is about this sommelier-loved grape, taste this dry-style Riesling from Smith Madrone, which has been planted up on their mountain property since the early 1970s. It has the grape’s renowned nerve, structure and a range of flavors: an orchard of different apple varieties, herb and minerality.
Surprise dinner guests with vegetable spring rolls or bread crisps topped with thin slices of pork tenderloin on a bed of apple compote, along with this Riesling, and you’re sure to get a rave or two.
We supplied a mature Riesling for an unusual tasting Stuart Pigott staged in NYC.
The 1996 Dry Riesling from Smith Madrone was at once mellow and racy, with a delicate toasty bouquet which charmed everyone, then stunned everyone when they found out what it was.
Read the entire article: http://www.stuartpigott.de/?p=4038