The Tablas Creek Vineyard fall releases are out and, as usual, they are wines not to be missed. There are 6 wines in total including 4 white wines and 2 red wines. All are really delicious.
Tablas Creek Vineyard consistently produces really amazing and well-priced wines that few other California wineries can match (to read the most recent article with links to all previous Tablas Creek articles click here ). The specialty is, of course, Rhone varietals and Tablas Creek Vineyard wines are beautifully crafted and very food friendly. Since 1997 they have made balanced and harmonious wines year in and year out. Their wines are highly acclaimed and last year Tablas Creek Vineyard was named the number two winery in America by The Daily Meal where I am a wine contributor (to read that article click here  and scroll up to 2.). Below is the history of Tablas Creek Vineyard which was in the introduction to my first article on Tablas Creek Vineyard:
Tablas Creek Vineyard is a partnership between the Perrin family, proprietors of Chateau Beaucastel in Chateauneuf du Pape, and Robert Haas, founder of Vineyard Brands, as majority partners and French and American friends as minority partners. The search for a vineyard location to grow Rhone varietals began in 1987 and in 1989 they purchased a 120 acre parcel in West Paso Robles some 12 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Here the rock and limestone soils are of the same geologic origin as at Beaucastel and the climate is also similar. The result is grapes that mature fully, yet retain crisp acidity. The vine cuttings were imported from Beaucastel to replicate the clonal selection and assure the quality and genetic source. The vine cuttings arrived in 1990 and planting began several years later. The first wine was made in 1997. Production, both in terms of quantity and number of wines produced, has been increasing steadily since then. Today the planting is complete and consists of 2/3s red varieties – Mourvèdre, Grenache Noir, Syrah, Tannat, and Counoise and 1/3 white varieties – Roussanne, Marsanne, Viognier, Picpoul Blanc, and Grenache Blanc. The centuries old Chateauneuf du Pape tradition is followed with the varieties blended to produce wines of a unique style and complexity. The concept of blending different varietals to make wines is one that I have always believed would make better wines in California. There are only a few exceptions to this belief and those would include the Burgundian varietals, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
As mentioned earlier, the Tablas Creek Vineyard fall 2018 releases are special. They are balanced, harmonious, and flavorful which is very much a part of the distinct character of Tablas Creek Vineyard wines. And with prices in a range of $25 to $60 the wines are especially attractive. My notes follow:
2017 Tablas Creek Vineyard Patelin de Tablas Blanc Paso Robles
This wine is a blend of five white Rhône varietals Grenache Blanc (44%), Viognier (19%), Marsanne (12%), Roussanne (12%) and Clairette Blanche (3%). The grapes were sourced from nine of the top Rhône vineyards in Paso Robles. The production is 4260 cases.
Light yellow gold in color this wine has a lovely perfume with floral, apple, and citrus undertones and a tinge of spice. On the palate it is rounded, lush, and supple with an underlying citrus tinge. The flavors show an intermingling of apple, peach, and citrus with a faint spiciness and the wine is balanced with great style and appeal – Outstanding. $25
2017 Tablas Creek Vineyard Côtes de Tablas Blanc Estate Bottled Adelaida District Paso Robles
This wine is a blend of four estate-grown white Rhône varietals: Viognier (44%), Marsanne (24%), Grenache Blanc (20%), and Roussanne (12%). The production is 1800 cases.
Light yellow gold in color this wine has a gorgeous floral perfume with a tinge of peach and a faint exotic nuance. It is elegant, yet lush with lots of intermingled flavors suggesting peach and melon with a faint exotic floral tinge and a nice citrus tinge on the finish. This is a unique and lovely wine with great early appeal. It will complement a wide variety of lighter foods and is a joy to drink – Outstanding Plus. $30
2017 Tablas Creek Vineyard Grenache Blanc Estate Bottled Adelaida District Paso Robles
This wine is made from 100% Grenache Blanc and represents Tablas Creek’s 15th bottling of this relatively unknown Rhône varietal. The production is 1325 cases.
Light yellow gold in color this wine has a lovely perfume with hints of apple and citrus with a faint floral spice undertone. On the palate it is bright and crisp with hints of melon and apple with a citrus tinge and a very faint floral spiciness. This this is a delicious wine that has immediate appeal for its youthful flavors, zest, and fruitiness – Outstanding. $35
2016 Tablas Creek Vineyard Esprit Blanc De Tablas Estate Bottled Adelaida District Paso Robles
This wine is made from three estate-grown Rhône varietals propagated from the Chateau de Beaucastel estate: Roussanne (75%), Grenache Blanc (18%), and Picpoul Blanc (7%). The production is 2070 cases.
Light yellow gold in color this wine has a great perfume that is faintly exotic with tropical nuances and a faint spiciness accented by a subtle mineral and citrus undertone. On the palate, it has great intensity and balance with complex intermingled flavors of citrus and and spice with a faint floral honeyed nuance. With a very long finish this is a stunning wine that will evolve over decades. Make no mistake about it, this is a classic wine in the making. While this wine can be enjoyed now, the real benefit will be in the years to come. This wine is classic and it is destined to be a cellar treasure. Be patient and you will be well rewarded – Outstanding Plus/Extraordinary. $45
2016 Tablas Creek Vineyard Mourvèdre Estate Bottled Adelaida District Paso Robles
This wine is made from 100% estate-grown Mourvèdre. It represents Tablas Creek’s 13th bottling of this varietal. The production is 825 cases.
The wine is dark in color with an intense perfume showing hints of spice, chocolate, and plum with a tinge of earthiness. On the palate it is structured yet beautifully balanced with lots of dark fruit flavors showing faint hints of chocolate and spice. Flavorful and rounded with a nice underlying crispness this is a lovely wine that shows well now, but will evolve and develop additional complexity over a long period of time – Outstanding/Outstanding Plus. $40
2016 Tablas Creek Vineyard Esprit de Tablas Estate Bottled Adelaida District Paso Robles
This wine is made from four estate-grown Rhône varietals propagated from the Chateau de Beaucastel estate: Mourvèdre (46%), Syrah (31%), Grenache (18%), Counoise (5%). The production is 2850 cases.
The wine has a dark color and a deep perfume of plums with tinges of spice and faint hints of chocolate. On the palate it is rich, lush, and rounded with great underlying structure and balance. And, layers of fruit flavors with tinges of spice and chocolate are followed by a long lingering finish. Although very impressive now, this is a wine for laying away. It is an absolute classic that will be a cellar treasure over the coming decades – Outstanding Plus/Extraordinary. $60
What a line-up! This is a stunning group of delicious under the radar wines. They have great style, character, and appeal with very attractive pricing. And, included are wines to drink now and others to lay away. So, like I said earlier, “Don’t miss these wines” (to visit the Tablas Creek Vineyard website to get more information including details on special pricing for wine club members click here ).