Saturday, February 12, 2011

Rotta Winery Tasting


So I'm getting older...I admit it. Damn it! I have been in the fine wine business thirty years and time doesn't stand still for any of us much less us curmudgeons who have always thought we knew it all, all along only to to be shaken awake repeatedly by change going on all around us.

Last night's tasting was an eye opener for me because I realized the wines I was tasting were a throwback to thirty years ago when a less refined model was the norm. These were country wines, plain and simple, and perfectly charming in their own right and Marc Caporales was right out of central casting as the forty year veteran winemaker out of UC Davis. My guess is he was making wines like these forty years ago before the consolidation within the industry produced a mantra of "make it taste all the same" so no one has to think about distinctiveness in the product.

Now I am faced with a new reality: There is now no more "old world" (Europe) and "new world" (California et al) but there exists a category that may be called "old-new world" for wines like Rotta. Now to close this episode... May I have the envelope please? The winners of the tasting were the reds in general and the two cabernets and the two zinfandels in particular with special accolades for the Heritage Zin for it's long lasting euro-style. Maybe its like clothing styles, if you hang around long enough everything returns to fashion.

Thanks for everything,


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