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Jenise

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WTN: St. Innocent Shea and Abeja Chardonnay

by Jenise » Wed Mar 22, 2006 5:35 pm

My husband wanted a pinot noir to sip plus a wee dram of white to go with the sesame chicken lo mein I made for dinner last night, so we opened:

2002 St. Innocent Shea Vineyard pinot noir, Oregon
My first Shea ever, so far as I know, and since the Seven Springs is drinking so well I presumed this would be. WRONG, Mrs. Stone! Great nose of black cherry fruit, plums and violets, but one suspects it's not showing all it can and the ungiving taste proves it. Drinkable, but obvious infanticide and no improvement over two-three hours.

2004 Abeja Chardonnay, Washington State
I was warned that this wine was big big big in a way that made me think fat fat fat and all those tropical butterscotch flavors I despise, like a Washington's-answer-to Pahlmeyer. WRONG AGAIN, Mrs. Stone! No butterscotch at all, and I wouldn't call this tropical. Full flavored but not thick or heavy, and not overdone in any way. Served in large burgundy bowls, the wine is light-to-medium yellow in color, and tastes of asian pear and green apple with light lemon nuances. Solid fruit and lightly nutty with traces of malo and oak-rounded acidity. Really quite delish, perfect for the dish, and yet more proof that I'm over being over chardonnay. $30 at Pike & Western Wines, Seattle.
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Bob Ross

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Re: TN: St. Innocent Shea and Abeja Chardonnay

by Bob Ross » Fri Apr 21, 2006 6:10 pm

As a lover of St. Innocent wines, Mrs. Stone, perhaps you could answer a question.

I see the Shea Vineyards name on a number of wines by different makers, including Shea Vineyards itself. I assume that they are all sourcing fruit from the same vineyard in Oregon.

Do you happen to know what winemakers use fruit from that vineyard?

I'm wondering if it would be possible to put together a tasting of several different wines from different makers in a particular vintage, and see what differences there were in the various wines.

Regards, Bob
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Jenise

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Re: TN: St. Innocent Shea and Abeja Chardonnay

by Jenise » Fri Apr 21, 2006 9:42 pm

I'm not up on everyone who uses Shea fruit, Bob. Ken Wright for one, and there's at least one more.

Bucko and I attended the type of tasting you're talking about years ago in San Fran, Bob, where the topic vineyard was the Hirsch, or is it just Hirsh? Anyway, it's a very large vineyard and 8 or 10 vineyards made wine from it and we had examples of most of them there. And the conclusion? Almost no detectable similarities. Winemaking technique asserted itself over terroir in almost every case.

But that said, I find the Garys' Vineyard that Adam Lee and Brian Loring both make wines from very telltale. I had one guy's one week and two weeks later had the other's from a different vintage, and yet I still recognized the vineyard.

Shea would be an interesting one to compare since its reputed to be so distinct and unusual. [/list]
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Doug Surplus

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Re: TN: St. Innocent Shea and Abeja Chardonnay

by Doug Surplus » Sat Apr 22, 2006 1:55 am

Methinks I'll hold the St Innoncent Shea 2003 a bit longer then. My cellar program shows it peaking in 2009 and drink by 2011. I have the 2000 also, peak in 2007, drink by 2011. I don't think I'll touch either one this year. Gotta go hunt up some Seven Springs to drink now.
Doug

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Re: TN: St. Innocent Shea and Abeja Chardonnay

by Jenise » Sat Apr 22, 2006 11:33 am

Doug, I think that schedule is right on for both wines. 2000's going to be an early maturing vintage and the ripeness of 03 might cause it to be one also.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov

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