Outstanding!, 2011 Albariño "No one was producing Albariño commercially in the Pacific Northwest when Earl Jones released his first vintage in 2000. Eleven years later, no has yet to match Abacela’s skill or scale with this Galician variety. The nose screams of citrus with lemon and quince, backed by pineapple, starfruit, grassiness and some slate. Its hallmark is delicious tartness, akin to some Sauvignon Blanc, joined by flavors of gooseberry, Granny Smith apple, lime peel and slightly unripe passionfruit. It’s truly amazing how the fruit fights through all the acidity. Enjoy with fresh oysters, a wide variety of tapas, or a plate of sliced Manchego, quince paste and Graber olives."
Outstanding! 2009 Estate Port "Perhaps no one in the Pacific Northwest
is as serious about Port-style wine as Abacela’s founding winemaker Earl Jones. He grows the five primary varieties — Tempranillo (46%), Tinta Amarela (19%), Bastardo (18%), Tinta Cão (11%) and Touriga Naçional — on his Fault Line Vineyard project. The grapes are pressed, and winemaker Andrew Wenzl stops fermentation at 9% residual sugar by using spirits distilled from Abacela grapes. The result is a classic Port nose of homemade caramel, black cherry, stewed plums, orange slices and cedar. Black cherry and blueberry flavors mix with notes of milk chocolate, and the sweetness is balanced by acidity. Its tannin structure is akin to fine-grain sandpaper and makes for a smooth delivery that will get even better in a couple of years."
Excellent. 2011 Viognier "It can be difficult to find a Viognier to pair with food, but here’s a candidate. Subdued aromas of Golden Delicious apple, orange and fresh pineapple are followed by candy corn and butterscotch. The entry to the palate is filled with yellow grapefruit and popcorn, backed by lovely minerality and Rangpur lime tartness to clean the palate. Enjoy this with scallops served alongside an orange sauce."
Excellent. 2009 Dolcetto "In Italian, “Dolcetto” translates to “sweet little one,” and while this wine is loaded with purple fruit, there’s plenty of acidity to steer it clear from any sign of sweetness. Aromas of plums, dried strawberry, cola, licorice, red clay and pink peppercorns play out in various forms on the flavors, joined by ripe blueberry and pomegranate."
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