Visit to Joseph Swan Winery and Selby and Thumbprint tasting rooms - Printable Version

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- wondersofwine - 11-16-2010 02:55 PM

I wasn't a very good note taker on Oct. 23--just glad to get in out of the rain. Went to a laundromat in Guerneville in the morning since I was running out of clean clothes and then had to try to get the dry clothes into the rental car before they got wet again. At Joseph Swan Vineyard and Winery off Trenton Road in Sonoma County I was intrigued by the dilemma of a party of eleven (bridal party?) whose van had broken down. Taxis would only pick up three or four passengers at a time and they weren't sure how they would get back home.

I sampled a Joseph Swan 2007 Pinot Noir from Saralee's Vineyard. (91 pts. "Wine Enthusiast") I have had an Eric Ross Pinot from this vineyard previously (and have one bottle left). The Joseph Swan Pinot was nice and I thought less potent than the Eric Ross version which was a bit overwhelming for many traditional Pinot food pairings. I purchased a bottle of this and may try the two Pinots from Saralee's Vineyard side-by-side for comparison.

Also sampled the 2005 Mourvedre and purchased a bottle (which got broken while stored in the church refrigerator last weekend.) It was very juicy with boysenberry or blueberry notes. I may order another at some point. I don't have any notes on the 2007 Tannat Matthew's Station but liked and purchased one bottle of the Syrah, Russian River Valley.

I had lunch at Healdsburg Bar and Grill which was lively and packed. With the chopped salad and adult macaroni and cheese I ordered a glass of Copain Tous Ensemble Rose' Sonoma County. Pink-orange to medium coral color with transparency. I wrote down watermelon and strawberry notes. Looking on the winery website to see what grapes are used I see that they note strawberry, watermelon and floral notes. It doesn't say what grapes.

I had left my umbrella in a taxi on my way to dinner in San Francisco Thursday evening so walked a couple blocks to a CVS to try to purchase a new one. They were sold out. One designer shop in Healdsburg had designer umbrellas but when they told me they started at $180 I decided I could just get wet. They didn't even look very substantial.

I visited the Selby tasting room and Thumbprint tasting rooms in Healdsburg but didn't have any wines that really impressed. I liked the Selby Pinot Noirs and Zinfandels better on my visit in 2007.

That night I met Brian Miller at The Girl and the Fig in the town of Sonoma where we had a very good meal and shared a Lioco from the restaurant wine list and an Antinori Tignanello that Brian brought. I especially enjoyed the fig and arugula salad with Laura Chenel goat cheese and toasted pecans and grilled figs. Both wines were a real treat but we left some to be savored by the waitress and kitchen crew.

Oct. 24--Pinot on the River finally arrives.

- Kcwhippet - 11-16-2010 07:40 PM

Nice notes, WoW. I'm particularly interested in the Lioco you had with dinner at the Girl and Fig. Which particular one was it? They make a raft of Chards and PNs, and we carry a few. One I like in particular is the Sonoma County Chard made from fruit from 4 vyds, the majority from Stuhlmuller (which is another Chard producer I've liked over the years). This one is 100% stainless steel - NO OAK. So, it's all about the fruit with no oak influence or manipulation.

- wondersofwine - 11-19-2010 03:15 PM

I don't remember the specifics--Brian was the one selecting from the winelist. I particularly like Lioco Charles Heintz Vineyard Chardonnay (also stainless steel) and Lioco Michaud Vineyard Pinot Noir. The Girl and the Fig has a Lioco Carignane on the winelist so it may have been that. It was a red wine as I recall. I have an e-mail into Brian asking if he remembers specifics but I haven't heard from him yet.

I have a half-bottle of Charles Heintz Vineyard Late Harvest Chardonnay which I haven't tried yet.

- wondersofwine - 12-09-2010 10:33 AM

Brian Miller finally saw my inquery and responded, KC. It was Lioco Indica which is from Carignane grapes grown in Mendocino.