Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wine Blogging Wednesday #61: Quivira Vineyards

Welcome to Wine Blogging Wednesday, the online tasting event dreamed up five (!) years ago by Lenn Thompson of Lenndevours: the New York Cork Report.

This month our host is our founder, and Lenn's theme for this month's tasting was "At the Source." Our instructions were to "actually visit a winery and taste a wine there. Bonus points if you can taste it with the winemaker or the vineyard manager." I'm getting some major bonus points on this one because I tasted wine with the winemaker, the vineyard manager, the farm manager, and the owners!

This summer I was invited to dinner at Quivira Vineyards in the beautiful Dry Creek Valley. Regular readers know that I am a huge fan of this wine region, but this was a chance for me to get behind the scenes at one of my favorite wineries and learn more about their interest in biodiversity and biodynamics as a way of cultivating a sustainable vineyard for the 21st century. To get a glimpse of what they're doing here, flip through these pictures taken at the dinner:

As the slideshow above illustrates, they raise pigs, fruit, bees, chickens, vegetables for area restaurants and grocery stores, and fruit at Quivira. They've also restored a stream for Steelheads hoping to bring them back to the Dry Creek Valley where they once flourished.

And yes, they make great wine, too. If you are interested in experiencing all Quivira has to offer, consider attending one of their farm-to-table seasonal dinners. The next one is on October 10 and will focus on the restoration of the creek, a fabulous dinner, and excellent wine. There will be a winter dinner in February that will include a hands-on blending seminar, and a spring dinner featuring a discussion of biodynamics. You can see menus, check out the dates, and reserve your place at dinner by clicking here.

Tasting Highlights

(note: clicking on a wine's name will take you directly to the Quivira online store)

2008 Quivira Mourvedre-Viognier Rosé: A special treat, this one-0f-a-kind wine was fermented in an acacia wood barrel. The deep, hot pink wine had huge apricot aromatics and a dry palate with flavors of strawberry, cherry, and rosehips. (not available for retail)

2007 Quivira Grenache: This wine's beautiful ruby color and amazing cascade of plum blossom and grilled herb aromas were a prelude to the rich cherry, strawberry, and spice flavors in the wine. Full-bodied but not heavy, this wine was nicely structured and had a delicious, mineral-inflected finish. (suggested retail through the winery $26; available for $19-$28 elsewhere)

2007 Quivira Old Vine Katz Vineyard Zinfandel: Sweet blackberry fruit and earth are present in the aromas top notes, and lead into a flavorful blend of grilled herb, berries, and white pepper. As the wine opened it became more meaty, but the aftertaste remained bright and spicy. (suggested retail $38, click on the wine's name to purchase through the winery)

2008 Quivira Fig Tree Sauvignon Blanc: Rich, round, and luscious, this wine never touched wood. The flavors and aromas are full of orchard (apple, pear) and tropical fruits, making for a clean drinking experience that never gets grassy or harsh. (suggested retail through the winery $18; $15-$22 elsewhere)


Claire Uncorked said...

I'm also a fan of Dry Creek. It's on our list of wine regions to visit!

If I had to choose 1 of the wines you profiled, I'm not sure that I could. They all sound delightful. However, the rose' is intriguing because I've never had one like that, so maybe I'd get that...but then, I do love Dry Creek Zin!

Jason said...

For a hoot; you should see Chris Riccobono's blind review of three wines. He is a young guy, totally laid-back and does video wine tastings on his site. Breaks some myths about high prices = good wine. He's on