We have some nice, upscale, but affordable reds, mainly from California, along with a couple of nice whites and a landmark sparkling wine. Also worthy of note, one of the reds and one of the whites are new offerings from Paul Hobbs.
2022 Babich Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc ($15). A little more weight and substance than many Marlborough Sauvignons, with lots of kiwi fruit and lime, but also very savory.
2018 Mira “Hyde Vineyard” Napa Valley Chardonnay ($33). A good match for poultry and grilled fish, it has nice, firm flavors of ripe pineapple and apple, as well as largely neutral wood.
2019 Alvaredos-Hobbs Ribera Godello ($49). Paul Hobbs is almost ubiquitous, and he chooses good grapes, good regions, and good partners. If you don’t know the grape Godello, get to – it’s quite fine, here with the weight of California Chardonnay but with a greener, spicier, and more floral taste profile.
Domaine Chandon 50th Anniversary Winemakers Blend Napa/Sonoma Sparkling Wine ($75). With shared input from all four of Chandon’s head winemakers, it has rounded and minerally lemon flavors with tinges of vanilla and almost-brioche-notes with noticeable tannins and good acid – a very impressive wine.
2022 Beronia Rioja Rosé ($16). Light flavors of strawberries and cherries with a little vanilla cream and a firm finish.
2018 Beronia Rioja Reserva ($20). Nice, standard-issue Rioja with ripe cherries blended with oak flavors.
2015 Beronia Rioja Gran Reserva ($35). Delicious – rich red fruits, somewhat juicy but muted by oak seasoning than you sense as much as taste – good acidity, dusty tannins.
2019 Bacignalupi Russian River Valley Petite Sirah ($58). Warm and generous fruits – blueberries and blackberries – full-bodied texture, a hint of bitter chocolate, a slight tangy finish with smooth tannins.
2018 Mirriam Vineyards “Windacre” Russian River Cabernet Sauvignon ($60). Nice, fresh, tart berry flavors – more red than purple – but with good richness and depth and a nice, long finish.
2018 Casa Ferreirinha Quinta da Lede Douro Red Wine ($78). Very old-style Bordeaux profile with medium body, good cassis, and dried berry flavors, friendly wood notes, and substantial tannins.
2018 Mira “Hyde Vineyard” Napa Valley Cabernet Franc ($90). An excellent wine with cassis and dried blackberry flavors, good barrel accents, and a touch of leather with finishing lip-smacking tannins.
2021 Paul Hobbs “George Memini Estate” Russian River Pinot Noir ($95). Very vibrant and flavorful with almost-juicy cherry fruit, good weight, some stony minerality, and a crisp, long finish.
Prices listed are generally SRP or from wine-searcher.com. As more wineries are now shipping direct-to-consumer, check the winery website if you can’t find a bottle in your retail store.
Photo courtesy of Mira Winery.