The stage was an unseasonably cold (for April) Friday in the northern part of the valley at Solage Calistoga where the Calistoga Winegrowers’ Grand Tasting showcased wines from 30 of Calistoga’s wineries and producers. Long time names such as Chateau Montelena and Larkmead were present along with a number of relative newcomers to the north valley wine scene including DYN 2880 Wines and Jack Brooks.
Small plates were paired with wines with the food from cooking stations located among the tasting area provided by Solage’s Michelin Star restaurant, Solbar. Live local bluegrass music accompanied the evening.
Being Calistoga – a rather obscure varietal was represented by several of the wineries pouring – Charbono – including two wineries producing a rosé from this varietal, Shypoke and Summers Estate. Another nice rosé which is a bit unusual because it is a blend rather than one varietal was the rosé from Canard Vineyards – a field blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Zinfandel – oh, and available in a sleek looking bottle to!
Four producers we have yet to review from the tasting this evening are Chateau de Vie (small production from owners of a B&B), Hindsight (affordable big yet balanced wines), Knighton Vineyards (unique terraced hillside property on the slopes of Mt. St. Helena, with an impressive wine we might add) and Samuel Brannan Vineyards (a new producer sourcing from a very old vineyard dating to 1861).
The following are some photos from the event.
For a full list of vintners represented at this tasting, visit: www.calistogafoodandwine.com/about