Wine speed dating at the USWBC

Live wineblogging at the US Winebloggers Conference – more like wineries trying to speed date me. 14 wines, 14 producers, 5 mintues each, all trying to get me to love their wine. Or at least take them out on a date. Was I able to make a sound judgement of the wines? Only as much as you can expect in 5 minutes.  Did I want any of them to contact me later? Well, one or two might be worth a second look.

Here are my impressions:

Small Vines Pinot Noir – light, med bodied, smoky, cherry, soft, silky, bright acidity. Didn’t have a lot of time to try this one as I was late setting up.

Cupcake Vineyards Chardonnay– what the winemaker said – wines reminiscent of cupcakes like when you were a kid, like gourmet cupcakes bit more complex, want to accentuate the fruit, cool fermentation then malolactic fermentation, 100% american oak, 6 to 8 months. What I thought: creamy nose, some tropical fruit, palate of tropical fruit slight bit of apple, some oak, creamy, buttery finish, typical california. Maybe a bit too rich for me. I might have outgrown this type of cupcake.

Kanzler vineyards Pinot noir – barrel sample wine, winery based in Sebastopol, cool climate, foggy nites, cool morning, sunny afternoon, fruit hangs along time, til halloween. Candy apple nose, med bodied, very spicy, strawberry jam, bit smoky, lots of cinammon

Sean Minor – 4 Bears winery 06 Cab, all wines retail below 20 bucks, 65% sourced from a select group of vineyards, the rest sourced by Sean from various vineyards. A blend of 85% cabernet sauvignon with the rest a blend of petit verdot and merlot. Matured in 50% french/50% american oak, retail $17. Nose- cassis, raspberries, subtle fruit nose, palate – cassis, cooked red fruit, raspberry, bit of cigar but still very fruity

Lionheart wine ’07 Roussane– the winemakers said that they were looking to make a balanced wine, higher in acidity then most, 100 percent roussane from Santa Barbera County, nose of orange blossom, tropical fruits, on the lees, lovely fruit upfront, tropical pineapple, creamy, bit of minerality, caramilized pineapple, lovely, great example of white Rhone vatietal, slightly nutty.

Bonterra organic wine- Winemakers Blend ’07 – 60% merlot, 26% cabernet sauvignon, 14% petit syrah from 45 years old vines, Consultant winemaker- Christian LeSommer, plummy, prunes, bit spiciness, nice merlot, good fruit, prune, full on, big wine.

James David from Paso Robles, dry, barrel fermented 2007 Muscat. Retail $18 – vines are over 30 years old, very grapey, perfumed, dry, white grapes, good acidity, white flowers, lighter muscat, bit of citrus finish

100 % Cab from Clos la Chance – started in 1992, now produce 60 – 80,000 cases a year, cassis nose, bit toasty, violets.  2005 a big vintage – cassis, rounded tannins, vanilla, blackcurrant, 14.5%, big wine but well balanced, good acidity. The winery was named after the producers’ mothers’ maiden name – LaChance

Twisted oak – The Spaniard 2006, retail $45. 60% tempranillo, 20% graciano, 14% garnacha – big, 

cherry, some pepper, racy, bit confected, like candy, a bit chalky.

Boho Vineyards Chardonnay,07 wine in a box – bit of oak, cream, wet stones, tropical fruit, palate – tropical fruit, good acidity, ripe apple, creamy, nice citrus finish, well balanced, well made, taste much better then what you would expect out of a box.

Blink 07 Pinot Noir – very cherry, red fruit, hints of smoke, fresh and pure fruit, palate – spicy,warm red fruit, quite morish, med body, toasty finish, good acidity.

I think I’d let Lionheart and Clos la Chance call me and Boho can take me out any ol’ time on a cheap date.


  1. I think that it is a very interesting and amusing article. Practically all its main points are true.

  2. It was! Even though it was a round-robin of wine tasting and not an actual speed dating event, it was great.

  3. looks like a blast!!

  4. I know I will 😉

  5. I had an amazing time, different from the Rioja conf. but still a fabulous time. Be on the lookout for my next post!

  6. hmmmm the same machine at work :)As far as I’ve read it was a very busy WBC. Hope you had a good time.

  7. very good!
    loved your site.
    check mine


  1. Kickin’ it at Kick Ranch Vineyards « Winesleuth’s Weblog - [...] too soon, the hayride was back to return us to our cars and we were off to the next…
  2. Final Thoughts on WBC 2008 | Caveman Wines - [...] Wine Sleuth [...]
  3. The Grapevine » Blog Archive » Speed tasting at the Wine Bloggers Conference - [...] Winesleuth’s Weblog [...]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.