Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Kalin Cellars

1996 Kalin Cellars, Sauvignon Blanc Potter Valley ($26) -- Mendocino County. This is the most interesting white wine I have ever tasted. Period. I am not well versed in French whites, although I have enjoyed a few White Chateauneuf-du-Pape's, but for California Whites this is the best as far as complexity, character and finish. I have tasted a few of the high-end Chardonnays (Hanzell, Hansel, Kistler) but I love the fruit here. One of the bottles I just tasted was actually starting to oxidize and get that raisan-like/almond flavor of a Sherry, but it was delightful. I liked it even better than the first bottle.

What is amazing is that this is the current release. What winery business model tells you to hold your wines in bottle for 5 to 10 years before releasing them to the public?

Web info is sparse (and the Kalin site is weak), but Beau at Basic Juice did rave about some of the other wines from Kalin Cellars last summer in August. I was out of town and missed his write-up.

For $26, run to the store to get a few bottles. I was told that this 9 year-old wine could age for 5 to 7 more years and I don't doubt it but watch the corks. The case I just got had some pretty saturated corks that were very soft when pulled.


Anonymous beau said...

Kalin is indeed a little gem hidden in the California wine expanse. I think part of Kalin's appeal is that they don't charge over-the-top prices. Sure you pay thirty clams, but you get some serious funk & complexity in return. I'm after the Chardonnay this week (I've downed the Semillon and P.Noir - both compelling).

11:38 PM  
Blogger adam mahler said...

this is a wine that is very interesting. I love how old the current releses are. This is one of those wines that everyone should try at least once in their life!

5:26 PM  

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