Poe 2016 Rosé, California
Inspired by the Ravens that congregated in her childhood backyard, Poe wines are the creation of Samantha Sheehan, a former financier who after a trip to Burgundy was compelled to make wines of similar expression and style. With a focus on organic vineyard practices and an emphasis on each unique “California terroir” to express itself, her wines have already garnered national attention in many high-end restaurants. The current rosé release is a blend of 66% Pinot Noir from a vineyard near Monterey, and 34% Pinot Meunier from another site in the Sonoma Mountains, and it is a truly unique rosé in a sea of current rosés available. Dried rose petal fragrances lift out of the glass, with interweaving scents of strawberry and watermelon. The palate returns the fruit components with additional savory qualities, recalling the ocean breezes that soar through the vineyards. Truly Californian.
Olivier Rivière 2014 Gabaxo Rioja, Spain
Olivier Rivière is another breakout star in the wine world. Born in Cognac, studied winemaking in Bordeaux, worked in Southwest France and Burgundy, Olivier eventually found his way to Spain and the Rioja region. Gabaxo, Spanish slang for Frenchman, is his blend of Garnacha and Tempranillo from two different regions within Rioja, and Olivier uses a combination of organic and biodynamic practices to allow the wines to highlight the vineyard sites and the grape varieties. His are not overly oaky Rioja that one may have tasted in the past; they are precise wines of exceptional quality and province. The 2014 vintage unfolds with black cherry and sandalwood aromas, earthy flavors akin to more robust Burgundies balance on the mouth with an extremely prolonged finish.