In a recent article from Antonio Galloni - Vinous (September 2018), 11 Adelaida wines scored 90 points or more. The 11 wines are a mix of current and future (2019 & 2020) releases. Read on for more.
Zinfandel, Michael's Estate Vineyard 2016 Shop Now
93 points - Bright purple. Expansive dark berry and cherry liqueur aromas are complemented by hints of vanilla, pungent flowers and woodsmoke. Juicy blackberry and bitter cherry flavors stain the palate and pick up peppery spice and mocha qualities as the wine stretches out. Rich but energetic as well, showing no excess fat. The extremely long, seamless, intensely dark-fruit-dominated finish is framed by supple, harmonious tannins.
Anna‘s Red Signature, Anna‘s Estate Vineyard 2016 Shop Now
93 Points - Deep brilliant ruby. Sexy, oak-spiced dark berry, cola and mocha scents are energized by cracked pepper and graphite flourishes. Sweet and expansive on the palate, offering concentrated cassis, cherry-vanilla and spicecake flavors and a building floral quality. Quite energetic for its heft, showing excellent clarity and mineral cut on a long, smooth, subtly tannic finish.
Cabernet Sauvignon Signature, Viking Estate Vineyard 2016 Shop Now
92 Points - Opaque ruby. Ripe dark berries, succulent flowers, smoky oak and a touch of mocha on the highly perfumed nose. Intense black and blue fruit and floral pastille flavors put on weight as the wine opens up. Fleshy and impressively concentrated but energetic as well. Finishes with impressive clarity and persistence; sneaky tannins lend closing grip.
Syrah Signature, Anna‘s Estate Vineyard 2016 Shop Now
92 Points - (40% new French oak) Opaque ruby. Smoke-accented boysenberry, cherry pit, bacon and floral aromas show excellent clarity and mineral lift. Silky and energetic on the palate, offering impressively concentrated black and blue fruit, spicecake and floral pastille flavors braced by a spine of juicy acidity. The persistent, seamless, appealingly sweet finish features interwoven tannins and resonating florality.
Pinot Noir, HMR Estate Vineyard 2016 Shop Now
91 points - Brilliant red. Displays aromas of dried red berries, cherry pit and baking spices, plus a hint of potpourri in the background. An energetic, silky midweight wine that features smoke-accented raspberry and bitter cherry flavors and a hint of white pepper. Energetic and tightly wound, finishing long and spicy, with fine-grained tannins adding gentle grip.
Twenty Three Twenty, Estate Vineyards 2016 - Release 2020
94 points - Bright purple. Deeply perfumed cherry preserve and blackberry aromas are complemented by suggestions of white pepper, candied licorice, vanilla and incense. Plush, broad and alluringly sweet, offering intense black and blue fruit, spicecake, violet pastille and mocha flavors and a bright minerally nuance that builds with air. An impressively long, floral-driven finish shows outstanding clarity and suave, harmonious tannins.
Syrah Signature, Viking Estate Vineyard 2016 - Release 2020
93 points - (raised in 60% new French oak) Youthful purple. A complex, expansive bouquet evokes candied dark berries, incense and vanilla, along with hints of licorice, cola and olive paste. Juicy blackberry and cherry cola flavors show excellent clarity, and a peppery nuance adds spicy lift. Smoothly balances power and elegance and shows no rough edges on the subtly tannic finish, which leaves sweet mocha and cherry liqueur notes behind.
Cabernet Franc Signature, Viking Estate Vineyard 2016 - Release 2019
92 Points - Lurid violet. Potent black currant, cherry and cedary oak scents are complicated by pipe tobacco, candied rose and cracked pepper nuances. Chewy and focused on the palate, offering concentrated dark berry, bitter cherry and succulent herb flavors plus a hint of smokiness. Delivers a solid punch of flavor and comes off surprisingly lithe for its heft. Finishes with mounting tannins, a jolt of peppery spices and strong, floral-driven persistence.
Mourvèdre Signature, Anna's Estate VIneyard 2016 - Release 2019
92 points - Glass-staining ruby. Smoke- and black-pepper-accented dark berry, cherry pit and floral aromas are sharpened by a bright mineral note, and a hint of candied licorice emerges with air. Palate-coating cassis and bitter cherry flavors show a touch of violet, and zesty acidity adds back-end bite. Closes firm and long, with very good focus and chewy tannins coming on late.
Chardonnay, HMR Estate Vineyards - Release 2019
92 points - Vivid yellow-gold. An exotically perfumed, powerful bouquet evokes pear and peach nectar, vanilla and candied ginger, with a smoky quality building in the glass. Sappy, seamless and concentrated, offering intense orchard and pit fruit flavors that are braced by dusty mineral and bitter orange pith qualities. Clings impressively on the mineral-accented finish, leaving hints of toasty lees and fennel behind.
Cabernet Sauvignon Syrah Signature, Estate Vineyards 2016 - Release 2019
91 points - Glass-staining ruby. Smoke- and black-pepper-accented dark berry, cherry pit and floral aromas are sharpened by a bright mineral note, and a hint of candied licorice emerges with air. Palate-coating cassis and bitter cherry flavors show a touch of violet, and zesty acidity adds back-end bite. Closes firm and long, with very good focus and chewy tannins coming on late.
Roussanne, Anna's Vineyard 2016 | $30.40/members
91 points, Doug Wilder - Purely Domestic Wine Review
"The nose is a taffy-like creamy peach, lemon and vanilla with notes of gardenia blossom. The palate is a full buttercream, tropical banana on entry with a richly textured and concentrated silkiness. Drink 2017 – 2019."
Anna's Red, Anna's Vineyard 2015 - $36.00/members
Aromas of plum and blackberry compote, roasting meat juices, wild thyme, and wet earth. Flavors of dried cranberries, beef jerky, and herbs-de-Provence.
Cabernet Sauvignon, Barrel Select 2015 - $48/members
The wine demonstrates the character of its mountain heritage showing a bold fruit profile, a sense of tightly wound inner energy translated into flavor extracts of blackberries, blueberries, elements of cedar-cigar-box with its fine maduro tobacco leaf and hints of cocoa powder in the resonant finish. Made for the long haul, its youthful grip and density beg for food pairings, additional bottle age will add a mellow complexity, lasting through 2025.
Pinot Noir HMR 2016 - $48.00/members
92 points, Doug Wilder - Purely Domestic Wine Review
The wine possesses an initial gossamer silkiness morphing into flavors of black cherry, raspberry tea, and forest floor dusted with whorls of spicy potpourri. It will outgrow its current adolescence in a few months, best enjoyed from late 2017 through 2023.
Zinfandel Michaels 2016 - $36.00/members
93 points, Doug Wilder - Purely Domestic Wine Review | 91 points, Wine Advocate
Aromas of briar patch, fresh picked raspberries, Grandfather’s pipe tobacco, pink peppercorns. Flavors of wild mountain berries, sweet/tart lingonberries, mocha, brown spices, peppercorn dust.
Anna's Red Signature, Anna's Vineyard 2015 - $48.00/members
94 points, Purely Domestic Wine Report | 91 points, Wine Advocate
Syrah 38%, Mourvèdre 31%, Grenache 18%, Petite Sirah 10%, Viognier 3%.
Inspired by the top cuvees of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, this GSM blend showcases the synergies of these varieties. Anna’s Estate Vineyard features mountain elevation and steep south facing exposures, all the better to maximize vine stress, thick skins and flavor intensity. The nose is a complex, earthy mint and cherry/chocolate with a beautifully polished palate and supple black fruit, gorgeous wine with notes of spice box. Drink 2017 - 2023.
Picpoul Blanc, Anna's Vineyard 2016 - $28.00/members
90 points, Doug Wilder - Purely Domestic Wine Review
"The nose is golden current, dried lemon with a subtle note of baked stone fruit tart with butter crumb crust. The palate is a crisp lemon and nectarine with a dewy melon on the finish along with bright, integrated acidity. Drink 2017 – 2020."
Syrah Signature, Anna's Vineyard 2016 - $60.00/members
90 points, Doug Wilder - Purely Domestic Wine Review
"The nose is dark chocolate, sticky blackberry and spice. The palate entry is scrumptiously polish black tree fruits with well structured acid and spice in the core."
Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley (Oregon) 2011, Library Release - $40.00/members
There is a sturdiness in the substantial mouthfeel which grows with aeration and builds to a dense tightly knit finish of integrated fruit, tannin and soil influence. Aromas of potpourri, rose petals, campfire smoke, roasted tomatoes. Flavors of roasted red fruits, raspberries, juniper berries
Touriga Nacional, Bobcat Vineyard 2014 - $38.40/members
Aromas of dark chocolate, violets, mint and dried rosemary
Flavors of black and blue fruits, raspberry jam, bittersweet cocoa, espresso
Nebbiolo Glenrose 2012 - $38.40/members
Aromas of rose petals, anise, raspberry sauce, forest floor, new leather.
Flavors of cherry skin, rose hips, anise, cloves, freshly turned soil.
The Don, Port Style Wine 2013 - $28.00/members
Aromas of berry preserves, mint leaves, chocolate truffles
Flavors of dense, lushly textured blackberry and raspberry pie, hint of mint, chocolate covered figs
By Chad Taber, Assistant Ranch Manager
High temperatures and low humidity are not a new concept to us in California, in fact, it is a reason I live here. But in times when the temperatures become too high or the humidity too low, our grapes and the resulting wine are affected. Therefore, managing the temperature of the fruit zone to optimize ripening of the grape has been a hot topic (pun intended) in the industry.
In recent years, we have been using shade cloth with great success to bring down the tempature of the fruit. Shade cloth filters the light and decreases the UV rays. It allows us to shade fruit evenly and control timing of leafing to create higher concentrations of phenols that give the wines rich and full flavor profiles. One thing that has been missing from the equation is the ability to not only lower the temperature but control it and add humidity.
The use of spriklers and irrigation (common practice in the industry) to mitigate low humidity and high temperatures is like an old glove to a farmer, it feels good on but it doesn’t really protect you. In efforts to change conventional wisdom, Adelaida Vineyards began experimenting with foggers above the canopy (pictured below). The fogger simulates a light fog, enough to create a humid atmosphere but not enough to form droplets on the vine. This technology isn't new in winemaking and it is most commonly used in barrel rooms to keep wine from evaporating.
This process uses minimal amounts of water to reduce vine stress and stop berries from overheating. This also allows vines to continue respiring and further the ripening process. Vines have microscopic pores called stomata and when under stress like wind and heat, they close their stomata to conserve water. Experience tells us to apply irrigation (water) before heat events to reduce the risk of damage. However with our cultivation methods done in the spring, we have preserved a reservoir of available water just one foot below the surface of the soil. Meaning the vines have sufficient water and canopy growth to endure these events but the fruit itself losses desired phenols and can produce cooked flavors that are not desired.
Our experiment is taking place on our high elevation Viking Vineyard where Cabernet Sauvignon is planted on thin limestone soils. High concentrations of limestone in soils can make very white, chalky soils and coupled with close proximity to the ground creates radiant heat that can have a negative effect during long and dry heat events. Our soil, adds beautiful lingering acidity to our grapes and fruit that need some “hang time”. The foggers allows us to do just that, it gives us control over high heat and low humidity events. We believe this enables us to be more conservative with our water by never having our vines endure sustained and elevated temperatures post veraison. This is the first vintage with our fogger system and we hope to be able to share a success story with you next vintage. Viticulture is an ever changing and passion driven endeavor to create the very best we can with what we have at our feet. No doubt we will learn much from this experiment in an effort to always improve.
By Jeremy Weintraub, Winemaker
The 2016 vintage at Adelaida was exceptionally good, with very high-quality fruit and slightly above-average yields. The winter rainfall was higher than in the previous four years, budbreak was early, and conditions during fruit set were unremarkable—which is ideal. The summer had a few periods of very warm weather—in June we hit 100 degrees nine times—but that heat created lots of color. July, too, was warm, but it was followed by a beautiful, cool to moderate August, which gave the pigmented varietals time to recover and develop flavors.
The 2016 Adelaida Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah wines combine some of the best attributes of previous vintages: the structure of 2013, the fruit and plushness of 2014, and the savory character of 2015.
We began picking Cabernet Sauvignon grapes on September 21st from the old section of our Viking Vineyard. As usual, the grapes were fully ripe, and we fermented them in a combination of wooden vat, wooden barrel, along with concrete and stainless steel tanks. The wine aged for 20 months in 75% new French oak barrels.
The Syrah harvest from Anna’s Vineyard began on September 9th. The grapes fermented in concrete and stainless steel tanks. Fermentation took its time—up to 3 weeks—and temperatures peaked at 86 degrees. The wine matured for 18 months in 70% new French oak barrels, hog heads, and puncheons.
- 8 green asparagus stalks
- 8 baby carrots
- 4 fingerling potatoes
- 1 10 ounce box blackberries
- 8 ounces butter, divided
- 2 shallots, diced, plus 6 more, cut in half
- 4 beef tenderloins, 8 ounces each
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 ounces vegetable stock
- 4 sprigs thyme, for garnish
- 4 sprigs rosemary, for garnish
- Clean asparagus, carrots and potatoes. Peel carrots and potatoes. In pot over medium heat, cook blackberries with butter and the diced shallots. Simmer for 5 minutes, until soft. Remove pot from heat. Once cool, place mixture into blender and purée. Once blended, strain through a sieve and set aside.
- Bring medium-sized pot of salted water to boil. Cook asparagus, carrots and potatoes for 4–5 minutes. Transfer to bowl of cold water filled with ice to halt cooking. Drain the vegetables and reserve.
- In pot over medium-high heat, sear remaining shallot halves with 2 ounces of butter and sugar. When caramelized, add vegetable stock and set aside.
- Heat remaining butter in pan, and sear beef tenderloin. For medium-rare, cook 4 minutes per side. Remove from pan. Add vegetables to same pan, searing for approximately 1 minute.
- Dress each plate with blackberry coulis and vegetables, placing beef on top. Garnish with thyme and rosemary. Serves 4.
Recipe adapted from Wine Enthusiast