Tasting the Wines of Lambert Bridge and Quivira, 2016


A recent trip to Dry Creek Valley took us to two of the region’s most noteworthy wineries, Lambert Bridge and Quivira, both well-regarded operations that make a wide variety of wines largely using local and estate fruit.

We tasted through the current releases (and some library wines) at both venues — which are both well worth your time should you find yourself in this uncommonly placid part of the California wine country. Thoughts on all wines tasted follow.

2013 Lambert Bridge Chardonnay / $55 / B- / traditional on the nose, bit butterscotch body; wet and woody finish
2015 Lambert Bridge Sauvignon Blanc / $36 / B / creamier style but quite dry; some gentle herbs, grassy
2013 Lambert Bridge Viognier / $52 / B- / 100% barrel fermented; unusual; caramel notes drag the acidity down
2011 Lambert Bridge Merlot Chambers Vineyard / $60 / A- / heavy chocolate and violet character; big big berries; blueberry and licorice
2009 Lambert Bridge Merlot Chambers Vineyard / $60 / B+ / very bold on the nose; lively with a slight herbaceousness; classic, lean finish
2013 Lambert Bridge Cabernet Franc / $70 / B / very dry, quite herbal; some dialed-back blackberry notes in time (95% cab franc)
2012 Lambert Bridge Malbec Chambers Vineyard / $70 / A- / some barnyard notes; quite earthy but lush and velvety at times; restrained overall, with a bit of black pepper showing
2009 Lambert Bridge Cabernet Sauvignon / $110 / A- / 100% cab sauvignon; lush and fruity, very pretty, but restrained on its berry profile; quite balanced
2012 Lambert Bridge Petit Verdot Chambers Vineyard / $70 / B+ / dry but very floral, with menthol overtones
2012 Lambert Bridge Crane Creek Cuvee / $110 / A / the five Bordeaux grapes really come together here, showing some earth, a licorice kick, and some coffee character (90% merlot based)
2014 Quivira Fig Tree Sauvignon Blanc / $24 / B+ / 75% aged in stainless; 25% in acacia wood barrels; cinnamon and ginger notes atop the usual grapefruit-heavy character
2014 Quivira Roussanne-Viognier / $34 / B+ / heavy lavender, eucalyptus, and fig; overwhelming aromatics
2013 Quivira Grenache / $32 / B / super strawberry up front; more general fruit notes on the back end, with a lingering, gentle sweetness
2013 Quivira Elusive / $36 / B+ / southern-style GSM blend; heavy chocolate up front, then some coffee; bolder fruit notes emerge with time
2013 Quivira Flight Zinfandel / $42 / A- / great balance; some menthol notes; lots of cherry character
2013 Quivira Goat Trek Vineyard Blend / $55 / B+ / heavily herbal with ample tannins; zippy fruit and raisin notes on the otherwise aromatic nose
2014 Quivira Black Boar Zinfandel / $NA / B+ / largely available only in restaurants; super fruity, with blackberries and some milk chocolate; huge alcohol on this one
2014 Quivira Montepulciano-Sangiovese / $NA / A- / 65/35 blend; bold but very dry with light aromatics; a big cherry closer

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