Saturday, September 4, 2010

2008 Kinkead Ridge Reds

When the Ohio weather gods get things right the results can be magnificent, and today was as near perfect as it gets.  That statement applies not only to today's weather, but the 2008 weather that produced the grapes that went into the four wines pictured above.  As a group, they are the best wines yet from Kinkead Ridge.

Today was the release day for the four wines at the winery and the high 60 degree temperature range, brilliant blue skies and wonderful north wind made the drive more than pleasant.  All four wines were being poured and we drank a sample of each. 

The Cabernet Franc is the best yet from this winery.  Bright, tart, red cherries in the nose and a clear red in the glass.  This is a medium weight, highly flavored wine with great acid, ample tannin and a wonderful refreshing quality.  There's just enough spice and oak to wake up your mouth.  This is also the wine that is closest to being ready to drink and the one that will be hardest to hold onto for that reason.    15% alcohol, $18.95, 388 cases produced.

Next up was the 2008 Syrah.  Darker color than the Cab Franc and a much different nose.  Dark fruit and just a subtle hint of the raw meat aroma I love in a Syrah.  The fruit was a medium dark plum and some dark cherries thrown in for good measure.  I got a touch of cinnamon as well as vanilla in this wine.  There was a little more weight than the Cab Franc, but still I would describe the weight as medium.  Nice finish with acid and tannin to clear the palate.  I will age some of this wine.  Good effort from what has been my least favorite red from this winery.  15.2% alcohol, $19.95, and 194 cases produced.

Next in line was the Cabernet Sauvignon.  What a mouthful this wine was and of all four wines this is the one that needs the most time to show its promise.  Dark cherries and some red currants in the nose led into a huge mouth feel of those same fruits.  Soft oak flavors added some complexity along with some sharp acid.  This was a more in your face wine and had much more body and substance, but the bottom line for me is that this wine is going to be elegant in about two years.  Everything this wine needs is there, but it's not ready.  When the parts do come together it will be wonderful.  I loved the 2007 vintage of this wine, and I very much liked the 2005 and 2004 vintages.  This wine is better.  15% alcohol, $19.95 and 364 cases produced.

At the end there was the Petit Verdot.  While I'm not trying to be like Gary Vaynerchuk from Wine Library TV in New Jersey my first impression of this wine was that someone took a handful of freshly picked, wonderfully ripe blackberries (brambles) and smashed them in my face.  What a unique and unmistakable nose and it totally immersed my nose in that fruit.  Those blackberries were there in the taste as well, and they brought some totally ripe blueberries along for the ride.  The wine virtually coated the tongue with flavor, but there was also correct acid and enough tannin to support that fruit.  This is a high alcohol level wine that manages to keep a fresh and light approach.  All I could think about was a year's bottle age and some venison medallions with a blackberry sauce.  Of all the KR reds I've had over the course of the last several years, this one is the best.  15.1% alcohol, 76 cases and $19.95.

What makes all this most wonderful is that these wines are local, and this is not an area previously known for outstanding red wines.  Given a talented and dedicated group at the winery that statement has definitely been put to rest. 

If one adds in the 2008 La Vigna Proprietary Red from this same neighborhood that was released this past spring 2008 will always be remembered in this area.  And if you're reading this and live in this area you need to find some of these wines. 

2 comments: said...

I think my Diamond Creek is also from the 70s!

Nancy, Kinkead Ridge

Nancy Bentley said...

It is! Red Rock 1977!