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Tablas Creek Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc 2005

Rhone White Blends from Central Coast, California
  • RP93
  • W&S93
0% ABV
  • RP94
  • RP94
  • CG92
  • WE91
  • W&S93
  • RP91
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Winemaker Notes

Blend: 70% Roussanne, 25% Grenache Blanc, 5% Picpoul Blanc

The 2005 Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc is a vibrant expression of the terroir of Tablas Creek. It shows aromas of honeysuckle, mint, lemon peel and spice, with rich Roussanne flavors of honey, rose petals, pear, petrol and white flowers, excellent breadth, cleansing acidity and great length.

It should drink well when young but will also reward time in bottle; it is expected to show beautifully for at least the next 5-7 years.

Food pairings: Cooked shellfish (lobster, softshell crab, shrimp); roasted or grilled vegetables (eggplant, asparagus, peppers); foods cooked with garlic and olive oil; rich fish dishes (i.e., salmon, swordfish); Asian stir fry.

"Even better is the 2005 Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc, a combination of 70% Roussanne and the rest mostly Grenache Blanc and a touch of Picpoul that sees no new oak. It reveals classic notes of honeyed marmalade, intense tropical fruits, impressive underlying minerality, and a chalky character in its big, fullthrottle personality that is bursting with character as well as intensity." 93 Points
Wine Advocate
August 31, 2007

"The components of this blend (70 percent roussanne, 25 percent grenache blanc and 5 percent picpoul blanc) form a tight weave. The middle of the wine has a plump, lovely richness without any overt sense of wood; the finish brings scents of fresh spring blossoms and savory saltwater toffee. It lasts with dynamic harmony, suited to age or to miso-marinated black cod." 93 Points
Wine & Spirits
August 2007

Critical Acclaim

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RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
W&S 93
Wine & Spirits
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Tablas Creek

Tablas Creek Vineyard

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Tablas Creek Vineyard, , California
Tablas Creek
The Perrins of Chateau de Beaucastel and Robert Haas, their importer since 1970, founded Tablas Creek Vineyard in 1990. They chose their 1600-foot elevation site in West Paso Robles' Las Tablas because of its chalky clay soils and its climate similar to the southern Rhone Valley. They imported selected French cuttings of Mourvedre, Grenache, Syrah and Counoise and multiplied, grafted and planted their own vines, which they farm organically. This blended wine, in the image of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, is 100% estate-grown and bottled.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington, and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde river, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful, and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb, or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

SKRCTH076_2005 Item# 91227

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