Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Mandolin Wines - bringing together quality and value from Central Coast

A mandolin is an instrument from the lute family that is noted for its brilliant tone and great carrying power.  Mandolin wines reflect on their namesake as their fruit from the California Central Coast delivers full fruit flavors and great carrying power.  Mandolin Vintners is a collaboration between winemaker Philip Zorn and wine executive Brent Shortridge.  Philip Zorn, American-born and raised in Germany graduated from the highest rated enology school in Germany and has expanded his knowledge at several wineries in California, including Sunny St. Helena, Gauer Estate, Paraiso Springs and Tria.  Shortridge began his winemaking career under legendary winemaker Andre Tchelistcheff at Buena Vista Winery.  He eventually left the cellar to become vice president of marketing for Buena Vista.

At Mandolin Zorn and Shortridge concentrated on producing wines that displaced their terroir, sense of place, of Monterey County, including Santa Lucia Highlands, Arroyo Seco and Hames Valley.   This region is strongly influenced by the Pacific Ocean with long hot days and cooling ocean breezes in the afternoon and fog in the morning. 

The 2009 Mandolin Syrah starts with a dark ruby color and rich aromas of plum and dried cherry, leading you to a great flavor profile of a mixture of blackberry, blueberry, plum, currant and cherry, backed by multiple layers of spice and a rich vanilla quality.  You will enjoy the touch of walnut and balsamic quality along with the white pepper.  It is great acidity and tannins leading to a long finish.  The suggested retail price is $10.

The 2009 Mandolin Cabernet Sauvignon won “Best in Class” at the 2009 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.  Aged for 14 months in French oak, this wine pops with rich flavors of cherries, blackberry, plum and currant.  Spices include nutmeg and pepper plus a nice milk chocolate quality.  The oak has done a great job of melting the tannins and fruits together into a nicely balanced wine, especially for the suggested retail price is $12.

For more information:  Mandolin Vintners

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