Wine country, almost by definition; is a gorgeous, relaxing, and delicious set of regions to visit. But how does one choose which region to visit and which wineries to whet one’s vinous whistle? Sometimes you just want a gorgeous setting, with wine that is at least, enjoyable. Other times you might just want the best wine that fits your palate, surroundings be damned. And sometimes you want to go beyond just the wine and have it paired with tasty bites of foodie porn. Fortunately, you now have at least one destination that takes all of these experiences and wraps them into one 3 hour, vino/foodie heavenly wine timeout from reality: the newly launched Jordan Vineyard & Winery (FB, Tw, YT, Fl, P, WL) “Estate Tour & Tasting.”
Like many things through the lens of a point and shoot, the photos of our tour just do not do justice to the estate’s beautiful 1200 acres of mainly unblemished wine country land. The lady Beth Fontaine (Tw) and I experienced the same wonderful conundrum during our previous stay at the winery. The tour begins with homemade, tasty pastries and fresh squeezed juice, followed by a trip to the very garden and orchards that were sourced for the morning tidbits that one just enjoyed. Additionally, you can say hello to the mini donkeys and estate raised and bred herd of cows and chickens. The Jordans are creating their own hybrid cattle herd from crossing Wagyu, Texas Longhorn, and Mexican cattle. Those will be introduced more later however, by Chef Todd Knoll.
Following the ranch, we climbed back into the custom Jordan pimp van to be driven over to the gorgeous Jordan Lake for the first wine tastingof the day, complete with more tasty pairings by Chef Knoll. Under the Blue Oaks by the Lake’s pier, we tasted through two vintages of Jordan Chardonnay, one of the finest chards in all of Sonoma County. As mentioned previously, Jordan only makes two wines, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon; allowing talented and longtime winemaker Rob Davis to focus his attention on the best that his vineyards can offer. Despite being back to back vintages, the elegance of the wines are allowed to shine, showing the dramatic differences of vintage variation between 2010 and 2011.
After a walk through the malbec vineyards and accompanying creek, we finished our day at the top of the tallest hill on the estate, where a newly built 360 degree view is offered of all 3 sub-appellations within the Sonoma Valley. It is a tremendous sight. Two of the Jordan cabs were poured here with more small bites sourced from the animals and gardens of the ranch visited earlier.
The stunning 2002 cab, one of Davis’ all-time favorite vintages of his Jordan Cabernet took the top honors of the day, and we purchased a bottle to drink later that night during dinner on the square. It was a perfect end to one of the most enjoyable wine country experiences that I’ve ever had the pleasure of partaking.
A large thank you goes out to the estate for this fun, beautiful and tasty opportunity! While the tours are on pause during this fall and winter season until mid-April 2014, you can inquire about reservations (highly necessary) once they resume, at $120/guest/3hrs on their website.
Wines we tasted (Jordan2013Tour) on the Jordan Estate Tour & Tasting:
Color: Medium to dark garnet, garnet edges, sediment.
Nose: Great dried black and blue fruit, earth, anise, fennel as well, with a good deepness to the aromas.
Palate: Outstanding here, with a great balance of the alternating dried and fresh ripe black fruit, great acidity, with fuller body, fine firm grip of tannin, and a smooth mouthfeel. Finishes with anise, black cherry and light loam. Fantastic: OldWorldWK, AwesomeWK.
Color: Ruby violet core, darker, with lighter edges.
Nose: Much fresher black and red fruit, more earthy and marzipan toast here than the ’02, with slight anise.
Palate: Full and more subtle acidity here, with bigger mouthfeel, but still with their classic, more elegant feel. Tannin is still integrating, but rather fine. Toast out into black cherry and liqueur finish, still needing aging but good: KeeperWK.