This Chardonnay and Riesling blend tastes TBA—totally botrytis affected—which it was, resulting in an intensely concentrated sweet wine. With 10% residual sugar, it has apricot nectar flavors and a dessert pastry, lemon chiffon thing going on. Always one of California’s top dessert wines, the ’03 is completely delicious.
One of the last releases from the class of ’01, this is a cellar candidate. It is a big, rich, unctuous wine, with gobs of black currant flavors wrapped up tight in a blanket of dusty tannins and new oak. You could drink it tonight with a great steak, but it will hold and improve for at least 10 years.
This celebrates the 30th anniversary of the famous tasting where Mike Grgich’s Chardonnay, from Chateau Montelena, took first place. The wine benefited from a small, warm vintage, and is intensely concentrated in tropical fruit, nectarine, tapioca and crème brûlée flavors that easily handle 100% new French oak. Extraordinarily creamy and rich, with lively balancing…
You could drink this classic Cab now, tannic as it is, because any wine this balanced and fine can be appreciated. Better to leave it be for five or ten years. It’s a dramatic wine, dense in black currants and black cherries, with a creme de cassis-like unctuousness. Oak has been judiciously applied. After all the new kids on the block have come and gone, Grgich…
Opens with a blast of apricot, lemon mousse, vanilla, butterscotch and smoky cinnamon aromas, and then really takes off in the mouth. It’s dessert in a glass, liquid peach cobbler drizzled with honey and vanilla syrup. Very sweet, with 12 percent residual sugar, but a firm spine of acidity provides balance. An unusual blend of Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon…
Really spectacular for its concentration and the sheer intensity of the way the fruit, oak and lees flood the palate, yet crisp, balanced and elegant. Mango, papaya, peach, pineapple, vanilla, buttered toast, the works. All comes together in the long, spicy finish.
Grown in Calistoga, this is textbook Petite Sirah: It’s black as a moonless night, bone dry, intensely tannic and enormously packed in fruit. Those tannins really lock the wine down in astringency, but they can’t hide the massive burst of blackberry, cassis liqueur, mocha, crispy bacon and black pepper. Nowhere near ready to drink, it’s a wine to be cellared for…
After years of tinkering with Sauvignon Blanc, Grgich Hills has finally produced a truly notable bottling—its best ever. This is lightly oaked, clean and delicious, with tart, lemony acids that provide brightness to the green apple, lemon, lime and pear flavors. The finish is honeyed and spicy.