Sunday afternoon in Berkeley should always involve stopping by a warehouse to taste a bunch of wines being poured by Steve Edmunds that he’s trying to clear out of storage for $9.99 a bottle.
2002 and 2003 Pinot Grigio Witters Vineyard – the cognoscenti (L. Stein, Thor, Lee Short) did not care for these too much, but I was just so pleased to find drinkable CA pinot gris, the 03 was riper and had more full flesh on its bones, but both had a firm spine, and almost hinted at minerality. I could drink these.
2001 Los Robles Viejos White and the 2002 blonk! were perhaps my two favorite ESJ offerings, the 02 showing riper with more full flesh on its bones, but both had a white/yellow fruit complexity and should be nice to watch age.
I liked the 2003 Los Robles Viejos White less because of the thin wispy viognier showing through, but who knows, you may like that. Along those lines, the 2003 Viognier Rozet Vineyard was also a little too wispy and uncontrolled for me, but, I could drink it.
The 1999 Matagrano Sangiovese was showing some fierce and “weird” chalky acidity which made it difficult for me to taste, but my roommate purchased some to shove down my throat at a later date (Wednesday).
The 2001 Zinfandel Peay Vineyard was however preferred by the cognoscenti (L. Stein, Thor, Lee Short) and it sure tasted like the zinfandel Steve Edmunds would make, delineated, no jam, a bit of pepper. But I rarely buy zin.
At the risk of being inflammatory (hey, I’m not a professional critic, I can let ‘er rip) I must say that the next table’s offerings of Sonoma pinot noirs from Harrington Wines were truly a joke. Making wines for less than five years, proud of all the multiple yeasts he knocks onto these grapes to achieve “pure expression” and charging up to $45 a bottle for simple juicy juice? I’m sure they are nice guys who mean well, but when Steve’s “real” wines were sitting five feet away at $9.99 per bottle, c’mon… Get me back on a plane to Europe please…