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Brian K Miller

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Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:05 am

Quick notes from the Broc Spring Release Party today. More detailed notes as we actually drink the wine with food!

2017 Sparkling Chenin Blanc-Crisp, fresh, more "fruity" than "bready"

2016 Grenache Gris. This was a nice discovery. I often have found varietal bottlings of Grenache Gris/Blanc to be somewhat "neutral", but this had some really nice texture and weight as well as some lovely citrus fruit. My favorite possibly of the lineup.

2017 Trousseau. From brand new vines in the foothills????? Very light, almost electric pink in color. Bright plum skins, some saline notes on the finish.

2017 Mission. Yes....Mission! Still electric pink, but this wine showed some figgy notes? Not jammy like a Zinfandel, but definitely some richness.

2017 Koukou Cab Franc. His "Cab Franc Nouveau" bottle. Again light, floral, good acid.

2016 Counoise. From Eaglepoint Ranch in Mendocino. Definitely the richest of the wines. Not really big or jammy, but some weight. Good plum fruit flavor. Earthy Nice wine! Favorite of the reds.
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Grenache Gris...

by TomHill » Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:11 am

Brian K Miller wrote:Quick notes from the Broc Spring Release Party today. More detailed notes as we actually drink the wine with food!

2016 Grenache Gris. This was a nice discovery. I often have found varietal bottlings of Grenache Gris/Blanc to be somewhat "neutral", but this had some really nice texture and weight as well as some lovely citrus fruit. My favorite possibly of the lineup.



Where was the GrenacheGris from, Brian? GibsonRanch?
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:05 pm

You got it, Tom! You are an encyclopedia of Rhone varietal knowledge! :lol:
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NoBrainer...

by TomHill » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:15 pm

Brian K Miller wrote:You got it, Tom! You are an encyclopedia of Rhone varietal knowledge! :lol:


No brainer, Brian. Gibson has the largest planting of GrenacheGris in Calif that I know of. It's not a variety that
is highly sought after.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by wnissen » Tue Mar 27, 2018 3:26 pm

Earthy, floral, acids, you made these sound so good I signed up for their club.
Last edited by wnissen on Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:16 pm

wnissen wrote:Earthy, floral, acids, you made these sound so good I signed up for their bclub.


Oof, Walt.

I enjoy the wines, and Chris Brockway is a really mellow fellow. They ARE on the lighter, low alcohol, IPOB side of things, so.... I enjoy them, as well as their neighbors, Donkey and Goat and Lusu. I enjoy "urban cycling", and all three wineries are right on a favorite urban shoreline ride, so I often end up there afterward.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by wnissen » Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:11 am

Brian K Miller wrote:
wnissen wrote:Earthy, floral, acids, you made these sound so good I signed up for their bclub.


Oof, Walt.

I enjoy the wines, and Chris Brockway is a really mellow fellow. They ARE on the lighter, low alcohol, IPOB side of things, so.... I enjoy them, as well as their neighbors, Donkey and Goat and Lusu. I enjoy "urban cycling", and all three wineries are right on a favorite urban shoreline ride, so I often end up there afterward.


What, are you afraid of the responsibility? :) Don't worry, I will drink them myself, I won't start accosting cyclists and demanding they compensate me for any bottles I don't care for. Never heard of Lusu, what's their deal?
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:34 pm

Lusu is on Camelia Street a couple of blocks away. Where Steve used to make his wines. VERY IPOB wines, some have a touch of spritz.

I loved his Lodi Bordeaux blend.


http://www.lusucellars.com/
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Doug Surplus » Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:33 pm

Brian - I too signed up for the club after reading your notes. I was mostly interested in the Grenache Gris since Sam Bilbro is no longer making it, but the other wines sound interesting too.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Mike Filigenzi » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:49 pm

Brian -

Was the Mission done as a rose style? Don't think I've had a pink one before. Do you know where the fruit was sourced?
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Mon Apr 02, 2018 12:23 pm

Mike Filigenzi wrote:Brian -

Was the Mission done as a rose style? Don't think I've had a pink one before. Do you know where the fruit was sourced?


Not really a rose style, Mike. Many of Chris' reds are lighter in extraction and color. The grapes come from Lodi.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Mike Filigenzi » Wed Apr 04, 2018 12:19 am

Sounds like an interesting take on that grape.

Thanks.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by wnissen » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:04 pm

Brian K Miller wrote:
wnissen wrote:Earthy, floral, acids, you made these sound so good I signed up for their bclub.


Oof, Walt.

I enjoy the wines, and Chris Brockway is a really mellow fellow. They ARE on the lighter, low alcohol, IPOB side of things, so.... I enjoy them, as well as their neighbors, Donkey and Goat and Lusu. I enjoy "urban cycling", and all three wineries are right on a favorite urban shoreline ride, so I often end up there afterward.


Hi Brian, I'm going to pick up my wines this Saturday before a concert at Berkeley's Freight and Salvage, care to share your route? I rode out on the Bay Bridge bike path after it opened, but I've never tried riding along the shoreline.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Thu Apr 12, 2018 9:34 pm

I don't have it mapped, and it is really....complicated. :roll:

but I usually park in the Fifth Street area, ride through the chic craziness of Fourth Street under the bridge, catch the path again (the bridge over 80), then ride all the way past Bay Street over the railroad bridge, catch Horton to Mandela Parkway, then ride to Downtown Oakland.

To ride back, I usually take Telegraph to Shattuck back to Berkeley.

Or, you can ride through Emeryville and catch Ninth (Berkeley Bowl West) then Eighth.

I am afraid this is not really very helpful? :roll:
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by wnissen » Fri Apr 13, 2018 6:55 pm

Well, I'm sure it would be helpful to someone who knows the streets of Berkeley! I sort of do, that's enough for me to put together a sketch of a route, which I appreciate. It's surprisingly difficult even with the sophisticated maps available today to find good bike routes. Just because there's a bike lane doesn't make it the best, and sometimes there's no good route over a freeway but there's a clear "least bad" choice. Thanks!
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:20 pm

wnissen wrote:Well, I'm sure it would be helpful to someone who knows the streets of Berkeley! I sort of do, that's enough for me to put together a sketch of a route, which I appreciate. It's surprisingly difficult even with the sophisticated maps available today to find good bike routes. Just because there's a bike lane doesn't make it the best, and sometimes there's no good route over a freeway but there's a clear "least bad" choice. Thanks!


I suppose I should figure out some of the online resources. I actually hit that ride (or a version of it) on Saturday. See my note on Lusu Cellars. Mixed reviews, but I still love his wines!

Didn't have your contact info with me. :?

The other good ride is to start in El Cerrito (away from the smashed windshield crowd :evil: ), ride to downtown Richmond on Barrett or via the new bicycle path, then hit Point Richmond, ride to the Red Oak Victory (there is a winery facility there in the old factory) then hit Ford Point! Found a good new microbrewery, East Brother, in the middle of a modern hidden industrial park near the Rosie the Riveter complex! You can ride all the way to Emeryville, but it can also be...complicated. :oops:
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by wnissen » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:36 pm

Brian K Miller wrote:Quick notes from the Broc Spring Release Party today. More detailed notes as we actually drink the wine with food!

2017 Sparkling Chenin Blanc-Crisp, fresh, more "fruity" than "bready"

2016 Grenache Gris. This was a nice discovery. I often have found varietal bottlings of Grenache Gris/Blanc to be somewhat "neutral", but this had some really nice texture and weight as well as some lovely citrus fruit. My favorite possibly of the lineup.

2017 Trousseau. From brand new vines in the foothills????? Very light, almost electric pink in color. Bright plum skins, some saline notes on the finish.

2017 Mission. Yes....Mission! Still electric pink, but this wine showed some figgy notes? Not jammy like a Zinfandel, but definitely some richness.

2017 Koukou Cab Franc. His "Cab Franc Nouveau" bottle. Again light, floral, good acid.

2016 Counoise. From Eaglepoint Ranch in Mendocino. Definitely the richest of the wines. Not really big or jammy, but some weight. Good plum fruit flavor. Earthy Nice wine! Favorite of the reds.


OK, I finally got a chance to try the wines. I wasn't aware that the sparkler was a Petillant Naturel, I was hoping for some lanolin / chenin character and didn't really get it. Very bubbly and dry. The grenache gris was a revelation. Such length, balance, and complexity. It had this malt / band-aid thing going on that I understand doesn't sound good but it was in the best way. The trousseau was good, the Mission was pretty weird. I think I've only had one before, Bernie Roth brought it to an offline hosted by Randy Resnick, it was late harvest, maybe by Alban? That one was an odd duck as well. Anyway, it was a decent drink, I'd happily have it with food since the was a bit of tannin in there to go with hearty acids, but I see it more as a food enhancer. Loved the cab franc, didn't realize it was a nouveau, really juicy, chile pepper, will be fantastic with food but also delicious on its own. The counoise was the only one above 12%, I also got plum but it didn't follow through as well on the palate, but I'm not sure I've ever had a varietal counoise.

Overall an extremely impressive crop of wines, totally in the style I prefer that is almost impossible to find in California.
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Brian K Miller » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:14 pm

Awesome! I should send your review to Chris Brockway!
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Re: Broc Cellars Spring Release

by Steve Edmunds » Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:15 am

Doug, if I'm not mistaken, I think the Bilbros may have bought Gibson Ranch. (I worked with their Grenache Gris in 1989; it was the Grenache in my 1989 Les Cotes Sauvages)
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