We tried these three over the weekend:
1. Scaia 60% Garganega/40% Chard IGT: Bianco del Veneto (12.5%; L02/12; DellaTerra) Tenuta SaintAntonio/Castagneli Massimo 2011: Med.dark yellow color; ratherr grapey/coarse almost muscatty/perfumed/Labrusca-like nose; rather soft/grapey/coarse/earthy slight grapefruity almost Labrusca/hybrid-like coarse flavor; med.long slight metallic/tangy somewhat soft/grapey/coarse/earthy finish; lacks brightness; has a strong coarse/grapey character that speaks more of a Labrusca or hybrid white more than anything. $15.00 (LCSWS)
2. Dashe LesEnfantsTerribles Zin McFaddenFarm/PotterVlly/MendoCnty (13.6%; "Beautiful fruit undisturbed by unnecessary processing"; NativeFermentation; OrganicallyGrown Grapes) MikeDashe/Oakland 2011: Med.light color; strong earthy/tomatoey/classic MendoCntyZin rather muddled/raspberry/Zin light spicy nose; fairly tart light earthy/tomatoey/Mendo red slight raspberry/Zin/spicy flavor w/ light tannins; med. earthy/dusty/tomatoey/MendoZin light raspberry/Zin finish w/ little tannins; speaks strongly of MendoZin w/ its stewed tomato character but seems sorta muddled and gray; Alice would love this, I don't; sorta old-timey Zin like the Parduccis of yore. $27.00 (LCSWS)
3. Babcock Syrah Nook&Cranny StaRitaHills (Estate; TerroirExclusives; "Optimum Quod Possum"; 15%; U) Lompoc 2005: Very dark color w/ no bricking; very strong blackberry/boysenberry/Syrah/licorice/chocolaty/ripe some smokey/toasty/oak bit spicy/cinammon slight roasted/espresso lovely complex nose; soft rich/lush bit peppery/cold-climate big/blackberry/boysenberry/Syrah/licorice bit chocolaty/ripe some toasty/charred/oak flavor w/ soft/smooth tannins; very long lush/rich chocolaty/ripe/blackberry/boysenberry/Syrah some charred/toasty/oak finish w/ light/smooth tannins; probably at its peak or slightly beyond; a classic SBC Syrah in the Tensley style w/ a bit of cold-climate pepper. $35.00
And a wee BloodyPulpit:
1. LesEnfantsTerribles: This is MikeDashe's rendition of making a "natural" wine...native yeasts, minimal winemaking, low sulfur, terroir driven...yada/yada/yada. He's made LET for 5-6 yrs now and it's a favorite of sweetAlice and those types. This iis about the 5'th or 6'th one of tried, now. All of them have been very/very underwhelming to my palate. This wine certainly spoke of MendoCnty terroir..but that was about the only thing going for it. It just seemed sorta muddled and confused. I far prefer his DryCreekVlly Zin...a non-"natural" wine but far from spoofalated; his PotterVlly Riesling from McFadden is one of Calif's best Rieslings. This is my last LET probably.
2. Optimum Quod Possum: This is BrianBabcock's nod to "natural" winemaking. It refers to his special technique of throwing four road-kill/dead possums into each fermentation vat to do a natural protienaceous fining of the post-fermentation wine.