Interested in knowing what wines are trending in 2016? Enchantment Resort‘s certified Sommelier, Michael Robb recently shared with us some of his current favorites.
Capensis, Chardonnay from South Africa
Since Chardonnay is said to be a winemaker’s grape, it often suffers from effusive wine-making techniques. Chardonnay’s capacity to be transformed by barrel fermentation, malolactic fermentation and various aging regimens has led to many bottles tasting manipulated, flabby, over-oaked and overdone. And then you come across a Chardonnay that helps you remember why it is one of the noble wine grapes. Capensis is a blend of Chardonnay from 3 vineyards in the Western Cape of South Africa. With juicy peach, pear, lime and mineral flavors that are smooth and deep, this wine has a polished texture and long finish. Capensis is a Chardonnay that is special because of the way it all comes together. Unfortunately, with a production of about 1,000 bottles, it is highly-coveted and not easily found.
Tenshen, White Blend from Santa Barbara County
The Red Blends have grown tremendously in the last few years but few are familiar with the White Blend category. The Tenshen brand was launched with a red blend by Alex Guarachi and Joey Tensley in 2014. Released in 2015, The Tenshen White is a blend of Rhone varietals – Viognier, Rousanne, Grenache Blanc and Chardonnay. Tenshen White is a great, relatively inexpensive wine. Very aromatic, lush and complex with apricot and peach flavors. Tenshen White is fun to use as a Sommelier because it’s an excellent food wine with mouthwatering texture and balanced acidity.
Law Estate Wines “Beyond Category”
There has been tremendous growth and development recently in the Paso Robles area with new appellations, wineries and wines.The aptly named “Beyond Category” wine is a blend of Syrah, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mourvedre and Petite Sirah. It follows no wine model, but is created from the grapes that the Paso Robles region grows best. This wine makes up for its lack of varietal focus with dense currant, black licorice and herb flavors and ends with a tannic minerality.
Slacker Linne Calodo, Red Blend from Paso Robles
The Paso Robles region has long been known for Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon, but has recently embraced the Red Blend category. “The Professional” red blend, a GSM (Grenache/Syrah/Mourvedre) Rhone-style blend, comes from a very serious winemaker with an irreverent attitude. This flavorful “pizza wine” is not designed to be the center of attention, but will win you over with its rich fruit and balanced acidity.