Oaky Producers - Printable Version

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- hhhanson - 04-07-2003 10:55 AM

I know this will get Buckos attention. I'm not sure what would be easier to list, producers that do, or don't significantly oak their wines, but I'm wondering which of the better wineries tend to typically produce an "oaky" type of Red wine.


- Bucko - 04-07-2003 12:11 PM

Grab a bottle of Leonetti if you want some oaky wine. Well-made, cult, but oaky.

- winoweenie - 04-07-2003 05:31 PM

Or any 1st, 2nd, 3rd or most any other classified growth Bordeaux. But what the Hay, what do dem dummies know? Theys' only been at the game for a few hunnert years. WW [img][/img]

- stevebody - 04-13-2003 02:27 AM

Jeez, anything Beringer ever made. They soak every wine they make in new oak (guess they can afford to, huh?), especially but not only the bargain wines. Ed Sbragia is such a great winemaker, you have to wonder why they rely so heavily on it but their Founders' Estate Merlot is maybe the oakiest wine I've ever tasted. Go figure...

- Drew - 04-13-2003 08:23 AM

St. Francis wines....2x4's in a bottle.


- hhhanson - 04-14-2003 10:33 AM

I guess I should have worded my question a little different. I'm actually wanting to know which NW producers do not over oak their wines. I assume most don't, so I thought it would be easier to list the ones that do, maybe I'm wrong.

- stevebody - 04-30-2003 10:36 AM

Doug McCrae is one of the best at knowing what to oak and what to leave alone. Ditto Marty Clubb at L'Ecole No. 41. Almsot all WA wineries use oak; nobody doesn't across the board. Actually, dare it say this, WA wineries commit far fewer Oak Crimes than CA wineries, as a rule. The use of oak here tends to be judicious rather than lavish. I'm sure somebody will take exception to that and they may well be right but that's my initial impression.

- Innkeeper - 04-30-2003 10:45 AM

One of a scant few whites I like with noticible oak in them is L'Ecole No. 41's Semillion. It is fruit, sweetness, acid, and oak in almost perfect balance. A very well structured wine. If other wineries handled the wood like this, I wouldn't be such a pill about it.

- wondersofwine - 04-30-2003 02:51 PM

I thought the Snoqualmie Merlot I tasted recently had a nice balance of good fruit with American oak (it turned out they use French oak--guess I can't tell the difference in most instances). Their other wines also come recommended (cabernet sauvignon, c.s./merlot blend, and their white wines but you were asking about reds.

- Thomas - 04-30-2003 05:11 PM

WOW, usually French oak gives the vanilla quality; American oak is towards nutty.

OK, before you all jump on me--I said "usually."

- stevebody - 04-30-2003 06:11 PM

Joy Anderson, Snoqualmie's winemaker, told me at a tasting here last winter that, if she could, she'd make everything she produces unoaked, but Stimson-Lane won't hear of it. Let me rephrase that: The Stimson MARKETING DEPARTMENT won't hear of it. She loves the fruit she's getting and thinks it's ready to stand alone but ain't allowed to do it. BTW, this was said in a casual conversation and may have been a loose burr under her saddle but I can see how she might feel that way.

I forgot to mention one winery that makes very artful use of oak and has even been known to leave it off: DeLille. The Chaleur Estate and the Harrison carry a touch of oak that flatters what's going on with the fruit and mineral while keeping resolutely in the background.