Review: Sarapo Family Wines, 2012 Releases

Review: Sarapo Family Wines, 2012 Releases

Sarapo is the second label from Eric Kent, and these wines are not made with secondary fruit, but are rather produced with a bit of a twist. Small lots from other winemakers — which would be destined for bulk blending in central California — are “rescued” by Sarapo, blended, and sold at bargain prices. (Cameron Hughes does the same thing, on a much bigger scale.)

It’s safe to assume that these wines — bottled with Italy both squarely in mind and clearly on the label — will vary widely from year to year. Here’s how the current vintages shake out.

2009 Sarapo Chardonnay Russian River Valley Vincenzo – A classic but milder California Chardonnay. A pleasant and mildly buttery body reveals some lemon character. Very refreshing overall, while maintaining its bolder varietal characteristics. (A second bottle was considerably woodier.) A- / $25

2010 Sarapo Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Teresa’s Reserve – Surprisingly good at this price, a crisp, light, cherry-forward Pinot that offers slight notes of tobacco, cedar, and baking spices on the finish. Great balance, easy drinking. A- / $25

2009 Sarapo Gaetano North Coast Molto Rosso – A blend of 46% Petite Sirah, 34% Syrah, and 20% Grenache. Odd, but it works. Piedmontese-styled, almost, you wouldn’t expect something this herbal, lightly smoky, and licorice-tinged from something that’s almost half Petite Sirah. Drying and food-friendly, this tastes like a different animal altogether. B+ / $23

2009 Sarapo Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Elena – I first found this Napa Cab to be a bit drying, but extended time with it has revealed more nuance. Italian-styled like the Gaetano, this Cab offers lots of dried herbs atop a gentle berry core. Touches of leather in the nose. It’s drinkable! B / $27

2010 Sarapo Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Teresa's Reserve




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

1 Comment

  1. Dusty on October 15, 2012 at 8:07 am

    I did not know the back story here. I will have to check them out soon.

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