Brief Notes from recent Sta Rita Hills Event

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Brief Notes from recent Sta Rita Hills Event

Postby Steve Anderson » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:51 pm

Spent the weekend in Desert Hot Springs and had a chance to make a brief stop at the Sta Rita Hills AVA tasting at The 3rd Corner in Palm Desert . Unfortunately the event was late in the afternoon on a Sunday, so could only afford to spend about 30 minutes there before we had to start heading back to San Diego.

Got to taste about 15 of the 50 or so wines from 14 SRH producers.

Some highlights:

2010 Cold Heaven Sanford & Benedict Viognier: Another winner from Morgan Clendennon. Great floral nose, with peach, apple and some melon on the palate. Crisp, easy drinking wine. While I’ve said many times that Dragonette makes the best Sauv Blancs in the County, I think the Viognier crown goes to Morgan hands down.

2011 Dragonette SRH Pinot Noir: Good to see John Dragonette at the event. Loved the 2010 SRH Pinot and think the 2011 will be just as great. Beautiful nose and nice fruit, but very young. I’d recommend holding at least 6-12 months. John was also pouring the 2011 Happy Canyon Sauv Blanc and 2010 Seven Syrah. I passed on both of those excellent wines as I have previously tasted them twice and needed to move quickly.

Transcendence: I had heard of Transcendence, but had not tasted their wines. What a treat. Definitely recommend checking these out if you come across them, or to visit them if you are in Lompoc

2011 Transcendence Zotovich Chardonnay: Citrus and some pear. Great nose, beautiful mouthfeel, nice acidity. Stainless steel only, no malo. Web site indicates 13.8% and 125 cases produced. Always helps when you start with great fruit like Zotovich, but this is nicely done.

2011 Transcendence Harrison Clarke Grenache
: Have enjoyed a few Harrison Clarke Syrahs from Copain, but my first time with an HC Vineyard Grenache. It did not disappoint. Color was lighter than expected, a beautiful ruby red. Nice red raspberry/strawberry fruits. Smooth, drinking well now. Web site indicates 14.5% ABV, neutral oak, and only 50 cases produced.

2010 Transcendence La Paloma Syrah: From the Larner Vineyard. Need I say more? Love Larner for Syrah, even more than I love Bien Nacido. Much darker than the Grenache, nearly opaque. Great Syrah profile of Blackberry and some meat, both on the nose and palate. Web site indicates 18 months in 1 year old barrels, 15.1% ABV and 75 cases produced.

Also enjoyed the 2009 Kessler-Haak Chardonnay, 2010 Longoria Cuvee Diana Chard, 2010 Huber Chard and 2010 Liquid Farm Golden Slope/2011 White Hill Chards (more notes to follow). Other than the Dragonette and Transcendence, did not get a chance to sample the many reds before having to head out. Wish I had more time to enjoy these great wines, and certainly missed some excellent ones from Cargasacchi, Zotovich, Pali and Dieberg.


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Re: Brief Notes from recent Sta Rita Hills Event

Postby Phil_Carpenter » Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:48 pm

Steve! Thanks for the notes. I've been meaning to check out Transcendence for a while just solidified my next visit.

Cold Heaven rules...I just keep buying...then drinking.

What can I say about Dragonette, just love everything about the label. Just had the Radian at STARS of Santa Barbara, AMAZING!! Great stuff.

New Liquid Farms are stellar...and THANKFULLY, the Kessler-Haak is showing up here in San Diego. Love it!!
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