Tasting the Wines of Temecula, 2022 Releases

Tasting the Wines of Temecula, 2022 Releases

Four new releases from our friends in Temecula in southern California.

2021 Danza del Sol Sauvignon Blanc Estate – A bit unctuous and sweet, with notes of brown butter and a thick layer of spice, this doesn’t immediately connote sauvignon blanc, save for the notes of fresh grass and florals on the nose. The body evokes lemon custard and oaky vanilla, again quite unorthodox for sauvignon blanc, lacking the bright acidity one expects from the style. B / $35

2021 Wiens Fiano Temecula Valley – Grassy, citrusy, and tropical all at once, this fresh bottling of fiano is a crowd-pleaser with hints of coconut tempering the notes of lemon and apple that dominate the attack. A twist of licorice and a pinch of bitter herbs can be seen as the wine warms a touch, particularly on the finish. B+ / $26

2018 Robert Renzoni Barbera Riserva Temecula Valley – 100% barbera, bottled with an ornate metal crest on the front, so it must be fancy, right? Sure enough: It’s a solid expression of barbera, lightly spiced with notes of cherry dominant, segueing into vanilla, tea leaf, and some bay leaf. A dusting of cocoa powder gives the finish an after-dinner pop. A- / $55

2016 Palumbo Family Merlot Catfish Vineyard – Thanks to Sideways, one’s expectations of merlot are always tepid — but I always end up pleasantly surprised by it. Same case here: In this bottling a lively blueberry character leads the way to notes of tea leaf and silky milk chocolate, with racy acidity propping up the finish. Approachable but weighty with ample gravity, the wine hints at balsamic elements without ever becoming hoary or feeling oxidized. Drinking perfectly well at the age of 6. A- / $56

2018 Robert Renzoni Barbera Riserva Temecula Valley




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