I periodically write about the wine shipments that I get from my wine club “A Taste of Monterey.” I always look forward to them as it is a chance for me to get some selections that would be impossible to secure here locally. Since we have the Reserve Wine Selections they are finer wines from some of the smaller wineries in the area and of limited production. I also enjoy the newsletter that they send out with the wines that we have purchased, and there were some articles about Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Port Salut cheese and a wonderful recipe for Scallop and Corn Chowder with Sauvignon Blanc.
The first wine that I received was a bit of a surprise as it was wrapped in paper, so it was like an extra Christmas present in the carton. The bottle of Tudor Hook Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands 2010 really caught my attention. Tudor Winery has become one of my favorite wineries from the area, as their Pinot Noir wines have all been outstanding and I hope this wine will continue to be counted among them. The Hook Vineyard in the Santa Lucia Highlands runs along the west side of the Salinas Valley. The suggested aging potential for this wine is five to six years, and there was only six barrels of this wine produced.
The next bottle that I will mention is from a small production winery, which is family owned and operated. The bottle of Sinecure Grenache Noir 2013 carries the Monterey AVA. The suggested aging potential for this wine is for seven to eight years. Grenache wines are becoming more endearing to me, because I tend to find them more quirky with the peppers and spices that I detect in them, which I find works very well with the dinners we have at home, because they also tend to be peppery and spicy. I am not sure how long this wine will stay in the cellar.
The third bottle in the shipment was a white wine for balance with the two red wines. The bottle of Cru Chardonnay Arroyo Seco 2011 should be interesting as well, as all of the Chardonnay wines we have received over the years from Monterey have been rave hits as well. This wine features fruit from two vineyards in the Arroyo Seco AVA, namely Marks Vineyards and Cobblestone Vineyards. According to the tasting notes, French Oak is well integrated in the wine and the suggested aging potential for this wine is five to six years, though most of the white wines in my cellar do not last that long.