Tony C.
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5 winery reviews
   - 5 in Napa Valley
0 wine trail reviews
3 first reviews
0 helpful votes


Member since:
December 2009

Robert Keenan Winery

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Great people, great wines, and a funky little property tucked away up on Spring Mountain. Their Chardonnay has always been such a refreshing treat amongst all the heavy-handed, buttery oak blobs. Clean and vibrant with a dash of minerality, you still get all that beautiful Chardonnay fruit but in a much more elegant fashion.

I'll say that about the reds too. Powerful, intense wines but at no point excessive with alcohol or fruit. Tempered restrained flavors permeate each red they make, allowing for both a pleasurable tasting experience but also wines that perform well at the table.

The folks who run the place have always been the best of hosts, happy to share their property and wines with you. It's always a great occasion to be on their property, you feel at home immediately.



 
12/01/2009




Diamond Creek Vineyards

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Making the drive to this stunning old-school property, you feel like you are going back in time - back to when Napa was much more of a humble farming community than a glitzy weekend escape. Times have changed since Diamond Creek first started making great Cabernet-based wines 30+ years ago, I'm glad to say they've steered clear of the trends and continued to do it their way with great results.

They may not be the fashionable, new kids on the block, super-ripe, high alcohol, and slathered in oak, but to drink a well-aged Diamond Creek is a real treat. Each of the vineyard designated wines has its own personality and they rarely disappoint when cellared right. Simply put, I wish there were more wineries out there like them.

Their yearly tasting party gives you a perfect understanding of their terroir-driven wines as you are given the opportunity to spend a leisurely day amongst the vines as you picnic and sip samples of the newest vintage. It's also a great chance to pick up pristine library releases. All in all, this is a pillar of California wine that every wine enthusiast should make a point of getting to know.



 
12/01/2009

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Trespass Vineyard

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Great escape from the stuffy tasting format. Donny is a an awesome guy, zero pretense. It's so incredibly relaxing to just be on the level with him, enjoying the wines right outside the Airstream parked on the future winery site amongst the vines. I kinda hope they never build on the property, it's such a good feel the way it is..

By the way, the wines are excellent. I have a real affinity for Spring Mountain Cabernet Franc and they have a beautiful one. Their Merlot and Zin are also special.



 
12/01/2009

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Ovid Napa Valley

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I had the pleasure of attending their open house to show off the property and the inaugural 2005 vintage. Michel Rolland was there for the event - a limited number of us took part in a blending session with him that was a blast. The setting is incredible, a spectacular building with beautiful outdoor space perched high up on Pritchard Hill. It was worth it, however much they spent on the place - it's nothing short of a winemaker's dream facility.

They release one wine, a Cab-based wine, made by Andy Erickson (also winemaker for Screaming Eagle and other high end Napa wines). Their consultant is Michel Rolland who consults on amazing wines all over the world (Harlan, Ornellaia, Ch. Ausone, etc....) They also have a program where they make 'experimental' wines, I don't know what they are focusing on in terms of production size and how often those are made.

What I do know is the wines are great, I've had the '05 a couple times and the '06 (from barrel). Bold Napa wine but without that excessive, overripe fruit. Powerful stuff with balance, complexity, and surprising finesse. Definitely worth the trip up the hill.



 
12/01/2009




Ovid Napa Valley

Wine:

Atmosphere:

Service:

I had the pleasure of attending their open house to show off the property and the inaugural 2005 vintage. Michel Rolland was there for the event - a limited number of us took part in a blending session with him that was a blast. The setting is incredible, a spectacular building with beautiful outdoor space perched high up on Pritchard Hill. It was worth it, however much they spent on the place - it's nothing short of a winemaker's dream facility.

They release one wine, a Cab-based wine, made by Andy Erickson (also winemaker for Screaming Eagle and other high end Napa wines). Their consultant is Michel Rolland who consults on amazing wines all over the world (Harlan, Ornellaia, Ch. Ausone, etc....) They also have a program where they make 'experimental' wines, I don't know what they are focusing on in terms of production size and how often those are made.

What I do know is the wines are great, I've had the '05 a couple times and the '06 (from barrel). Bold Napa wine but without that excessive, overripe fruit. Powerful stuff with balance, complexity, and surprising finesse. Definitely worth the trip up the hill.



 
12/01/2009