One of the many highlights of the Little River Whale Festival was the Taste of Little River where guests could enjoy fine wines and finger food or appetizers from 8 different venues. In addition to the artison cheese’s and crackers, Chef Robert Hernandez of Stevenswood prepared for the pairing of the wines an assortment of handmade roulletes of crab & dried tomato or cream cheese and asparagus to enjoy with the wines.
Guests enjoying wine tasting Pouring is Claire Baxter More guests enjoying the event
We were excited and honored to have Baxter Winery pouring here at Stevenswood from our wine bar. This artison winery produces in small batches wines such as Syrah, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, Carignan, and Pinot Noir. They brought three different wines for guests to experience, savor and enjoy.
Famous for there Pinot Noir, they introduced there 2009 Pinot Noir from the Oppenlander Vineyard located near the town of Comptche, where the vineyard sits at the base of the mountains surrounding the small and picturesque Surprise Valley, only ten miles from the Pacific Ocean. The slightly cooler climate helps this vineyard produce a wine with an intense backbone and a vivid color, without overpowering the delicate aromas and smooth mouthfeel which is desirable in a Pinot Noir. This wine is full of dark red fruits such as cranberry and black cherry, while the nose starts with the usual bramble and quickly gives way to black tea and rose petal. The wine is rich in acids and focused fruit.
Baxter Winery also poured a 2009 Pinot Noir with grapes produced from the Langley Vineyard, located in the heart of the Anderson Valley just north of Boonville. The vines from this four acre vineyard provides winemaker Phillip Baxter with a unique and lively expression of Pinot Noir. Using old world methods and a completely natural approach to vinification the wine offers a moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass, with aromas of dark red cherries and berries, underbush and paraffin. Pleasingly intense core of cherries wrapped in fine grain tannins and displaying unusually hi-strung acidity, finishing with a flourish of cherry flavor. Elegant and light on its feet.
Baxter Winery also poured there Carignan wine. One of the best kept secrets in Mendocino County is the many vineyards of old-vine Carignan scattered among the newer plantings. The grapes come from The Caballo Blanco Vineyard which is nestled on the gentle slope leading up from Robinson Creek in a small valley near Ukiah, which these vines are nearly 70 years old. This vineyard shows their commitment to the quality by dry-farming and using organic practices to enhance the terrior and intensity of these old vines. The Caballo Blanco Carignan produces a wine of immense depth and flavor from this nearly forgotten varietal. The nose is powerful and intricate with aromas of rose petal, violets, cherry syrup, and tobacco leaf. Equally as intense, the mouth is layered with black cherry, raspberry, plum and cola. A rich round mouthfeel, balanced with bright fruit and acidity, gives this wine the duality of being enjoyable young as well as the ability to age.