Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Abacela featured in the Wine Spectator!

"Abacela, the leading light of Umpqua Valley"
Wine Spectator, June 15, 2016

Southern Oregon grapes and wines play a supporting role in dozens of budget-priced bottlings carrying the statewide Oregon designation. But in the hands of talented growers and winemakers, grapes from distinct appellations such as Rogue Valley can make standout wines on their own. 
Wine Spectator's Harvey Steiman explains:


ABACELA 2014 Albariño Umpqua Valley, 89 points
Vivid, lively and appealing, with lemony apple and grapefruit flavors, tripping lightly over refined acidity and finishing with presence.

ABACELA 2013 Fiesta Tempranillo Umpqua Valley, 88 points
Gritty tannins present a challenge in this firm version, but the dark berry and coffee flavors emerge, lingering on the smoky finish.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Flowering in the indicator vine!

Flowering in the indicator vines means we will have generally flowering throughout the vineyards within 10-12 days. Vintage 2016 is off to a great start!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

New Tempranillo Ratings from the Wine Enthusiast

Abacela earns two 90+ point ratings in the June 2016 issue of the Wine Enthusiast!

-  91 Points, 2013 South East Block Reserve Tempranillo
Moving up the ladder among Abacela's Tempranillo bottlings, this is packed with juicy, ripe black fruits. There are scent and flavor accents of tanned leather and savory herbs, and the wine is built for staying power. If there is a quibble to be made, it's that the tannins have a rather chalky residual flavor.

-  90 Points, 2013 Barrel Select Tempranillo
Estate grown and aged in 31% new barrels, this offers dense purple fruits, scents of violets and mocha, and a smoky thread that carries into the finish. There are strong flavors of cedar box and graphite, and the tannins are chewy and substantial.

All reviews by Paul Gregutt, Wine Enthusiast (c). Read on

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Kudos for our 2015 Grenache Rosé!

 By Jade Helm DWS CS CSW 
Not sure why people are afraid of rosé wine.  I guess pink is scary?  This style gets a bad rep from the overly sweetened, mass produced, Koolaid colored wines that flood the market, and probably flooded most of our “sophisticated” parties in our younger years.  It doesn’t have to be like that. Rosé wine can be elegant, alluring, feisty and dry.   All we are saying is give pink a chance.

To get you started we organized the first, and we hope annual, Rosé Wine Bowl of Rose Street.  This gathering of wine tasting professionals and enthusiastic consumers met to bring you blind tasting notes for a few Oregon Rosé Wines.  Tasted in two blind settings: 1. Critics circle with written notes  2. Party atmosphere with casual discussion.
Oregon winemakers, take note.  At least in our small experiment consumers weren’t turned on by a passing whisp of aroma.  Don’t go too far in the opposite direction to avoid rosé’s reputation for being a bit of an overly made-up tart.  Nobody likes a tease either.  There is a middle ground between prudish and promiscuous.   We love the delicate, feminine charms of a rosé,  but can we have a little fun too?  Give us more of what our Oregon grapes can offer, even when they are pretty in pink.  We can handle it and we wouldn’t mind handling more of the following wines.  
Enjoyed by the whole group and a favorite of the critic’s circle.  This looks and smells like a girl’s childhood memory.  The color of heart shaped “fashion” pendants and the fresh perfume lavender talc scent you remember from you favorite Avon purchase.  The grown up girl in you, boys too, will love the palate of strawberry, honeydew, and the sweet tartness of a green apple. Layered and nuanced.
Read the full article.

Monday, March 28, 2016

2016 Cascadia Wine Competition Results are in!

Abacela takes home top honors at this year's Cascadia Wine Competition. (Formally know as the Great NW Wine Competition.)

2015 Blanco Dulce - Best of Class & Gold Medal
Southern Oregon winemaker Andrew Wenzl crafted a beauty of a dessert wine here, using estate Albariño that hung on the vines and accumulated sweetness well past its normal harvest time. Aromas of honey-glazed apricot and intense Christmas spices lead to flavors of candied orange peel, poached peach and vanilla ice cream. It is a stunning dessert wine.

2013 Tempranillo Fiesta - Double Gold Medal
The Northwest Tempranillo master has proved his expertise once again. Earl Jones’ Abacela estate grapes from 2013, put into the capable hands of winemaker Andrew Wenzl, were used in this fruit-forward wine aptly called Fiesta. And you’ll want to start a celebration of your own after sampling it. Its nose opens with mint, spicy oak and nimble cherries. In the mouth, the cherries are dark, dipping down toward dark Marionberry skin, then unearthing Abacela estate’s minerality and grippy tannins. It’s a huge mouthful – “Yuuuge, I tell you” – that calls out for a rare ribeye amply dusted with cracked black pepper.

2015 Muscat - Gold Medal
Annually, Abacela crafts one of the most beautiful and graceful Muscats in the Pacific Northwest. This new vintage is no exception, thanks to aromas of rosewater, lavender and clove. On the palate, it offers flavors of lychee, pink grapefruit and Golden Delicious apple. Its 3% residual sugar and gentle acidity make this a delicious and approachable sipper.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Eugene Magazine; Celebrating Oregon's AVAs

Abacela's 2012 Barrel Select Tempranillo was chosen to represent the Umpqua Valley AVA (American viticultural area) in the Eugene Magazine's "Celebrating Oregon's AVAs" article, Spring 2016 issue. 

In the early 1960s, the late Richard Sommer planted vinifera grapes in the rain shadow of the Callahan Ridge, reviving Oregon wine in that area. 

Since then, the Umpqua Valley and its many sub-valleys have boomed with fine wines. Earl and Hilda Jones, experimental scientists, traveled through Spain's Rioja region and encountered great tempranillo reds. They came back to the U.S., moved to Roseburg, and planted vines on the steep slopes of one of Oregon's most beautiful vineyards. 

Abacela 2012 Barrel Select Tempranillo is truly superb, rich and deep, ready for pairing with spring lamb or beef hot form the grill. It has gained well-deserved recognition internationally as a rival of the great reds from Rioja.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Wine Enthusiast Ratings are in!

Abacela earns four 90+ point ratings and three Editors' Choice in the April 2016 issue of the Wine Enthusiast!

-    93 points & Cellar Selection, 2012 Northwest Block Reserve Malbec
The winery notes that this is their 16th vintage of Malbec, but just the first reserve bottling. Intense aromatics introduce a wine saturated with black fruits, coffee liqueur, soy and tobacco. It offers exceptional depth and power. Drink now through 2025.
-    92 points & Editors' Choice, 2012 Barrel Select Syrah
This terrific wine is classically varietal, with beautifully defined flavors of cured meats, tobacco, coffee, lavender and peppercorn, all in service to ripe purple fruits. Impeccably balanced, it conveys finesse.

-    91 points & Editors' Choice, 2013 Barrel Select Malbec
This outstanding Malbec dazzles with scents of tobacco and chocolate, flavors of sour cherry and plum, and impressive concentration and persistence. The flavors gather strength and focus, adding details of lavender and lemon curd, as they roll into a lingering finish.

-    90 points, 2013 Barrel Select Tinta Amarela
Abacela makes a fortified wine from Portuguese grapes, but this is a dry, varietal expression of one of the most obscure. Bone-dry, it's got tongue-scraping tannins that taste of black tea. It offers dried raspberries, vanilla and cocoa elements, and the overall complexity is impressive. This seems built for a thick steak.

-   89 points, 2013 Fiesta Tempranillo
Abacela makes up to four different Tempranillos in a given vintage, this being the entry-level bottle. And a fine introduction it is, with vivid red and black berries, a dusting of sweet spices, a gentle whiff of tanned leather, chalk and ample tannins. Aged in both French and American oak, 15% new, it is drinking quite nicely already.

  89 points & Editors' Choice, Vintner’s Blend #15
This 15th edition of this nonvintage blend, sourced entirely from estate grapes (principally Tempranillo), is a sure-fire palate pleaser. Fresh and youthful, it's bursting with plush boysenberries, loganberries and blackberries, annotated with a streak of coffee and cacao.

All reviews by Paul Gregutt, Wine Enthusiast (c). Read on