Other Red Blends from North Coast, California
Ever the enigmatic beast, our 2010 Leviathan is trolling in deep, familiar waters. Harkening back to previous vintages, expressions of dark cherry, blueberry and blackberry exude from the glass. Brambly fruits combine with hints of chocolate malt, crème brûlée, cigar box, dried herbs and espresso. Its tentacles reach from the glass and draw you in from the first encounter. Broad shouldered and brawny but with laser precision, the 2010 vintage showcases the best of California. Allow yourself to be gathered by the seine of this cryptic creature, and embark on a nautical adventure solo or en masse!
Blend: 47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 21% Syrah, 5% Cabernet Franc
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "The 2010 Leviathan is drop-dead gorgeous. Smoke,plums, mocha, graphite, savory herbs and tobacco all explode from the glass. Layered, rich and expressive, the 2010 impresses for its purity and depth. "
Wine Spectator - "Tight, young and vibrant, with a pure, focused core of dried berry, currant and dill, expanding and gliding through the finish, where touches of dried herb and cedar reverberate. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Franc. "
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About North CoastView a map of North Coast wineries
Beyond Napa and Sonoma in the north you find a couple of other counties producing great wine. Among these are Mendocino and Lake County. The northernmost California winegrowing regions, these two counties are right above Napa and Sonoma, geographically. Yet, wine-wise they are very different – both from their southern neighbors and from each other.
Notable FactsMendocino has a high amount of organic vintners and vines. The first winery to settle here was Fetzer, which practices organic viticulture and holds some of the most vineyard land in the area. Mendocino has many pockets of micro-climates while Lake County, being smaller in size, is less diverse climactically. As for the grapes, Chardonnay is the most popular in both counties, but there are also some excellent Sauvignon Blancs, particularly in the Lake County. In red wine, Zinfandel leads the way, followed by Rhone Blends and Petite Sirah. The reds in both counties are complex and sumptuous. Anderson Valley is a sub-AVA of Mendicino and is quite well known for its excellent cool climate, producing the delicious Roederer Estate sparkling wines and some wonderful cool-climate Syrah.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.