Tue 3 Jun 2008
Here’s a case where one doesn’t worry about a California wine slavishly following its foreign model, in this instance the tempranillo-based wines of Spain, because this wine is so damned delicious and downright fairly priced. The Matchbook Tempranillo 2005, Dunnigan Hills, is a combination of 80 percent tempranillo grapes, 10 percent malbec, and five percent each petit verdot and graciano (a Spanish blending grape); it ages only about seven months in oak. The result is a lovely bouquet of black currant, black cherry and plum laden with layers of black tea, minerals and dried spice. The wine is warm and rich in the mouth, ripe and fleshy in its black fruit flavors, firm in texture and vibrant in acid, with hints of orange rind, spice and bittersweet chocolate. The wine is quite dry, a bit underbrushy and brambly on the finish, but eminently drinkable. 1,913 cases produced. I rate this Very Good+ and recommend it with burgers, pork chops, steaks and such. About $15, good value.