The Rhone Rangers invaded L.A. today. 40 producers, mostly the Paso crew, with some from Santa Barbara and even as far away as Washington State and New York made the trek to showcase their wines.
Two wines really stood out in my mind to be the wines of the day, and they're not from the usual grapes, but they are from some of the Santa Barbara County's better winemakers.
White Wine of the Day
2012 Qupe Bien Nacido Vineyard Roussanne
Having just done a 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 vertical of the Qupe Bien Nacido Vineyard Roussanne last night it was rewarding to taste the current release from one of California's original Rhone Rangers, and long time friend, Bob Lindquist.
The 2012 is obviously still youthful and lean, but it has all the qualities of the 2003 and 2005. First it will age 10-15 years easily. Second the fruit is so lively that it will only get better. Third, is the structure. The wine is perfectly balanced and has a long, deep and solid finish. Find it. Buy it. Let it age...a long time.
Red Wine of the Day
2015 tercero wines Cinsault
This is the second time I've tasted this wine in three weeks, after being tasted on it at the winery's tasting room in Los Olivos. Just like then, there's a real sense that this wine comes from the Rhone or Languedoc more than it comes from Santa Barbara County. It reminds me of Sylvain Fadat's Les Serviers as the bright berry flavor and a slight herbal aroma. The wine is smooth, elegant and has a very long, lingering finish.