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Drxeno

Location: Napa, CA

About Me: Ward Kadel – @drXeNo is the West Coast Ambassador & Staff Blogger for WineLog.net and Le Wine Buff for Bordeaux.com (CIVB), as featured in their documentary short film. He was named a “key influencer” and a “strong community manager” in the seminal white paper on wine + tech, VinTank’s “WE ARE HERE: The State of Wine Industry Social Media.” Raised in and residing in Napa, he is a proud Vintage High Crusher and has been around wine virtually all of his life.

He has published the long-running wine blog Vinopanion since May 2007. Ward has also composed content and media as Influencer for Crushpad and Brixr.com’s TinyBottles, as Community Manager for Northern California Wine on Lunch.com and has consulted for wineries, PR firms and wine organizations for web content and social channel strategy and monitoring.

His freelance articles have appeared in Palate Press and Mutineer Magazine and his content is syndicated on the mobile apps Wine By the Bar and Hello Vino, rated #1 by Mashable on “Apps for Wine Lovers.” Ward is also one of the founders of the “Wine Badge” movement with his WKBadges and is a member of the VinTank Tasting Panel. In 2011 he worked harvest at the iconic Stags Leap District estate Chimney Rock Winery, during which he posted in real-time for his Man Falls in the Vines - #MFITV media campaign.

In his varied, hectic past and present he has hosted and produced the long running radio show TeK-IndUced EuPHoriA, worked as an assistant for the internationally renown progressive house label Loöq Records and its decade+ long DJ weekly Qoöl, in San Francisco. Ever the avid investment addict, he was also a featured social investor for Covester.com and interviewed about the biotech business sector by The Wall Street Transcript.

Ward lives in the Napa Valley, very lucky in love with his wife, food and travel blogger Beth Fontaine of Rollerskating With Scissors. When not imbibing and/or tweeting, posting, filming, consulting or writing about wine, Ward can be found researching cancer, DJing at his monthly The Winchester, training for his next triathlon…or, just relaxing with friends and family with a tasty bottle of vino.

View Ward’s WineLog, follow him on Twitter or Like Vinopanion on Facebook. Contact him: “Ward at WineLog.net”.

Ward happily accepts samples but does not guarantee a review, positive or negative.

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Mar. 2, 2015 Scharffenberger Anderson Valley Estate Pinot Noir 2007

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Personal Notes

Tasted at the winery/tasting room, during our weekend media stay at Lula Cellars in Anderson Valley, January of 2015. Stay courtesy of Chalkboard Communications.
SC: "The 2007 Pinot Noir is a blend of nine Clones from Perkins-Clark, Dach-Pinoli, Stollorz, Esther-Clark, Navarro Fairhills and Redwood Grove Vineyards.
Color: Ruby.
Aromas: Complex, spicy black fruit, balanced with French oak vanilla.
Mouth: Fleshy with balanced acidity, medium body and soft tannins.
100% de-stemmed fruit
Manual punching down
20% Cold maceration
100% Malolactic fermentation
Aged 11 months French oak (20% new)
Light filtration to bottle
Alcohol:"

  x $N/A
Tasting Notes
& Comments


Color: Medium garnet in the color, with light-orange edges and light to-medium in density.

Nose: Great earthy, ripe, drier red fruit here with tarter rhubarb and some dried cola notes.

Palate: Light-bodied, this is pretty silky in the mouth with smoke, some chalky notes, and tart cranberry fruit. The finish goes juicier, with more smoke finishing it off. Good, more time left: OldWorldWK. - 03/03/2015


Feb. 20, 2015 Roederer Estate Anderson Valley L'Ermitage 2005

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Personal Notes

Tasted at the winery/tasting room, during our weekend media stay at Lula Cellars in Anderson Valley, January of 2015. Stay courtesy of Chalkboard Communications.
RE: "52% Ch, 48% PN, 789 cases"

  x $98
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Very big mousse here, with a light canary color and extremely fine bead.

Nose: Brighter white pitted fruit and dried citrus right of the bat, then some light toastiness near the rim.

Palate: Big mousse here as well, with that bouncing tight bead on the tongue. Fruit is a mix of fresh and dried green apple and citrus, alongside white raisin, bready toast, and nice florals out into the refreshing finish. Good: OldWorldWK. - 02/20/2015


Feb. 20, 2015 Toulouse Anderson Valley Gewürztraminer 2013

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Personal Notes

Tasted at the winery/tasting room, during our weekend media stay at Lula Cellars in Anderson Valley, January of 2015. Stay courtesy of Chalkboard Communications.
TV: "In 2005, Vern and Maxine entered their first vintage, the 2002 Toulouse Estate Pinot Noir, in the San Francisco Chronicle’s annual October Mendocino Pinot Noir wine judging event. Of the 43 Mendocino County Pinot Noir wines, Toulouse was the panel’s favorite. By the end of the year, the 2002 Toulouse Estate was selected as one of the Chronicle’s Top 100 Wines of 2005. Recently, the Toulouse Estate 2005 Pinot Noir received a 91 point rating in the Wine Spectator and was “Best of Class” in the 2007 National Women’s Wine Competition. Toulouse’s scenic vineyard is established as a proven site that has produced 94 point wines. Their fruit is purchased by some of the most renowned winemakers in Anderson Valley, such as the McPhail Family Wines, Phillips-Hill Estates, and Baxter Winery. While Pinot is their mainstay wine, they produce a Rose of Pinot Noir and a Riesling, both grown at Toulouse. In addition, a Gewürztraminer and Pinot Gris are produced. The fruit is purchased from other Anderson Valley growers."

  x $24
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Medium to brighter golden in tone here, with clear edges.

Nose: Distinct ginger fills the glass here, with some pear and tropical fruit, brightened by lime citrus.

Palate: Asian spice abounds on the clean and zesty palate, with that same ginger and tropical fruit. It's almost a liquid Asian salad here, with bit of spice in the very zesty finish, as well. - 02/20/2015


Feb. 20, 2015 Lichen Anderson Valley Solera V2 Pinot Noir NV

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Personal Notes

Tasted at the winery/tasting room, during our weekend media stay at Lula Cellars in Anderson Valley, January of 2015. Stay courtesy of Chalkboard Communications.
LE: "HARVEST DATES

September 29, 2011; September 18, 21, & 30, 2012
CHEMISTRY

Brix at Harvest: 22.4° to 24.6°
Alcohol: 13.65%
pH: 3.62
Total Acidity: 5.6 g/L
Residual Sugar: 0%
BOTTLES CRAFTED

1608 x 750 ml bottles (134 cases)
RELEASE

October 1, 2013
ESTATE VINEYARD

Seven acres of estate vines overlook Highway 128 from the 203-acre Lichen Estate in Anderson Valley. Prepared in 2007 and planted in 2008 on meter-by-meter spacing, the vineyard comprises 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Pinot Gris vines on 15% to 35% southeast-facing slopes. Farmed 100% organically. Approximately 30,000 vines comprised of six blocks and four clones of Pinot Noir (Martini, Wadenswil, Pommard, & 667) on three rootstocks (101-14, 420A, and 161-49); and two blocks of Pinot Gris (148 & 152) on two rootstocks (161-49 and SO4). The 2012 vintage marked the vineyard’s fifth leaf, and its first substantial crop. Average yield: 1.67 pounds per vine.

CELLAR

Lichen Estate takes the “solera” approach common in Sherry to this multi-vintage blend. Lichen’s first Solera Pinot Noir combines the estate vineyard’s entire first harvest of 2011 (two barrels) with six barrels of the 2012 Estate Pinot Noir. Six barrels drawn down for bottling in 2013, with two barrels left to combine with 2013 harvest and beyond. For the Solera Volume 2 we added 6 barrels of the 2013 vintage, bottled six of the eight barrels in August 2014 and kept two of the blend. Fermentation: 14-17 days; 1.1 to 1.7 ton lots; 5 to 6 day cold soaks; gentle pump-overs followed by hand punch-downs; and 2 to 3 day extended maceration. Barrels: Françoise Frere, 3-year dried, extra tight grain wood, medium plus toast.

TASTING NOTES

This multi-vintage blend (2011-2013) is named for the time-honored aging and blending process used to create the world’s great Sherries and Madeiras. Ripe red fruit aromas mingle with toasted oak and tobacco scents, and the wine adds traditional rhubarb and strawberry in its complex bouquet of flavors, all textured like raw silk. As you enjoy the first “Solera” from Lichen, reflect that two barrels were kept to blend into future Soleras. "

  x $40
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Light ruby and garnet in the core, with bright ruby edges.

Nose: Flinty toast at first, then dark and ripe red fruit comes in, finishing smoky at the rim.

Palate: Medium full body with coating tannin, this wine is still integrating all of its components. Floral red fruit comes into the mid-palate, with big acidity into the finish. I've never even thought of a solera-method pinot, so I'm unsure how it will end up, but I think its worth waiting a year or two to drink! - 02/20/2015


Oct. 12, 2014 Carredueñas Cigales Tinto Roble 2012

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Personal Notes

Received as a sample from ARGOS Consulting, 05/17/14.
Drank on a warm summer evening in Napa at Zuzu Tapas Bar, 09/28/14.
BCC: "The Concejo family has been making wine for generations and tending its vineyards. However, it wasn’t until 1987
when the current owner formed Concejo Bodegas and began restructuring the property for commercial success.

In 1980s, many vines were pulled because the vineyards had undesirable vari- etals; however, 4 hectares of vines older than 100 years were kept. Between 1987 and 1997, 15 hectares were planted. Today, the estate is comprised of 25 hect- ares, 15 of which are trellis-planted with Tempranillo at a density of 2,550 vines per hectare. The vines are drip-irrigated.

Production
Concejo Bodegas produced its first vintage in 1998. It now produces five different wines and 150,000 bottles. It has modern winemaking equipment and 400 American and French oak barrels
for aging."

  x $14
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Darker garnet in the core here, with brighter ruby edges, violet highlights.

Nose: Great deep and ripe black and red fruit here, of plum and black cherry. The fruit is wrapped in good earthy flint, along with integrating oak.

Palate: Full and rounder, this shows off a lot of good mouthfeel and flavors at such a low price point. That same deep and ripe dark fruit is also found here, along with toasted and flinty earth. The tannins are firm and fine, with great food-based acidity to enliven all of these flavors into the long, toasted finish. Good value: QPRWK. - 10/13/2014


Oct. 8, 2014 Prince Michel Monticello Mount Juliette Vineyards Petit Manseng 2008

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Personal Notes

Tasted during dinner at the 2011 Wine Bloggers Conference in Charlottesville, Virginia 07/22/11.

  x $30
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Light greenish yellow

Nose: Huge bright tropical fruit here, hint of light florals on top.

Palate: Very crisp tropical fruit flows into zesty lemon and lime, with definite peach blossom in the finish. Good and tart. - 10/08/2014


Sep. 25, 2014 Holman Ranch Carmel Valley Estate Grown Sweet Love Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc 2013

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Personal Notes

Tasted during our media FAM stay at the ranch, 04/28/14. Our stay was courtesy of ChatterboxPR.

  x $45
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Almost clear, viscous with 10% RS

Nose: Good bright lime here in the nose, with nectarine as well.

Palate: Fuller and very round, yet not weighty with sweetness. Good balanced acidity, marzipan, vanilla, dried pear or nectarine, subtle sweetened lime here underneath. - 09/26/2014


Sep. 25, 2014 Holman Ranch Carmel Valley Estate Grown Kelly's Press Pinot Noir 2012

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Personal Notes

Tasted during our media FAM stay at the ranch, 04/28/14. Our stay was courtesy of ChatterboxPR.

  x $25
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Light to medium rose in core, light edges.

Nose: Smoky, meatier red fruit here, good and savory.

Palate: Round and cool on the palate, with good meaty red fruit and scorched earth. Juicy acidity for the dark red fruit and fine tannin. A good, more savory pinot! - 09/26/2014


Sep. 25, 2014 Holman Ranch Carmel Valley Estate Grown Blushing Bride Rosé of Pinot Noir 2012

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Personal Notes

Tasted during our media FAM stay at the ranch, 04/28/14. Our stay was courtesy of ChatterboxPR.

  x $20
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Gorgeous light coral.

Nose: Bright and crisp blood orange and strawberry notes here.

Palate: Very good acidity here with citrus, a little roundness as well, then a very juicy red fruit medley. Crisp and juicy, with light garrigue in finish. Very good. - 09/26/2014


Sep. 18, 2014 Holman Ranch Carmel Valley Estate Grown .5o Brix Pinot Gris 2013

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Personal Notes

Tasted during our media FAM stay at the ranch, 04/28/14. Our stay was courtesy of ChatterboxPR.

  x $16
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Light almost clear lemon yellow core.

Nose: A little closed right now, just released. But more floral here white florals pop out right now.

Palate: Rounder, with some marzipan and light sweetness with yellow and green apple as well, tingly acidity brightens up the pear fruit out to the round, fuller finish. - 09/19/2014


Sep. 18, 2014 Holman Ranch Carmel Valley Estate Grown Pinot Gris 2012

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Personal Notes

Tasted during our media FAM stay at the ranch, 04/28/14. Our stay was courtesy of ChatterboxPR.

  x $16
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Very clear core and edges.

Nose: Great green apple, clean Meyer lemon here in the nose, with a bit of chalk.

Palate: Light and brighter here in the fore, then a nice light creamier roundness in the mid palate, with a very juicy apple chit medley and Meyer lemon again into the bright finish. Good. - 09/18/2014


Sep. 3, 2014 Schloss Johannisberg Rheingau Gelblack Qualitätswein Feinherb Riesling 2012

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Personal Notes

Received as a sample from Creative Palate PR, 02/19/14.
Drank on a cool summer night, 09/03/14.
SJ: "Composed of hand-harvested grapes from the single Schloss Johannisberg vineyard, a highly aromatic Riesling with distinctive notes of white flowers, citrus and pear. Complex, exceptionally balanced and refined.
APPELLATION: Rheingau – Single vineyard Schloss Johannisberg

VARIETY: 100% Riesling

TERROIR: The totally south-facing vineyard is steep as 45° and climbs from 114 m to 181 m above sea level. The forest on top of the Taunus protects the vineyards from cold winds from the North and in the South the Rhine lays like a lake in front of the estate on the foothills. The 50° parallel runs directly through the vineyard and the unique soil formation with Taunusquarzit topped with loam and rich loss is perfect for mineralic Rieslings keeps water and temperature very well.

VINIFICATION: Hand harvest. Whole cluster pressure. Fermentation – 90% stainless tank, 10% wooden barrel – 1200 L. Rest on lees – 5 months.

COLOR: Brilliant pale lemon yellow

AROMA: The nose is young with white flowers, grinded lemon pale and pears.

PALATE: Firm and fresh on the palate, well balanced with crisp acidity.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS: Enjoy with salads, roasted chicken

ALCOHOL: 12%"

  x $35
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Medium to deeper canary yellow here, with still clear edges.

Nose: Good, clean yellow apple, pear, white florals, and nectarine here.

Palate: While not completely dry, with the brilliant nectarine and almost ripe pear acidity, it comes off as dry. Great crisp, knife-edged fruit and minerality takes this out to the very clean finish, with a bit of juiciness. - 09/04/2014


Aug. 17, 2014 Prinz von Hessen Rheingau Royal Kabinett Riesling 2012

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Personal Notes

Received as a sample from Folio Wines and Five.comm PR, 07/09/14.
Drank on a hot summer evening, 08/15/14.
PvHW: "A truly “royal” Kabinett with “royal” characteristics.
This “royal” “Kabinett“ is a true interpretation of its origin and
quality classification, as defined by the PRINZ VON HESSEN Estate. Under the careful
guidance of ambitious Winery Director Dr Clemens Kiefer and the young winemaker
Sascha Huber, this vibrant Kabinett is a new addition to the wine range that successfully
unites the house style of the Wine Estate and epitomises Riesling, lifting the Kabinett
category. Above all however, it exceeds the expectations of the consumer."

  x $25
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Very light greenish/yellow here, with clear edges.

Nose: Good nectarine and citrus aromas here, followed by some kerosene and white floral notes.

Palate: Very light in body as anticipated in this Kabinett German riesling, and almost completely dry in RS. Good citrus and tarter pitted fruit abound, with the same light notes of white flowers and kerosene from the nose, out into the refreshing finish. - 08/18/2014


Jun. 10, 2014 Santa Carolina Valle de Leyda Leyda Estate Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2013

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Personal Notes

Received as a sample from Thomas Collective, 09/05/13.
Drank with a beautiful catfish dinner by the Lady, 06/10/14.

VSC: "Appellation This Sauvignon Blanc is sourced from our vineyards in the Leyda Valley. Cool sea breezes from the Pacific Ocean blow through this newly discovered wine region to counter-balance its otherwise dry climate. Its rolling hillsides are as close as 5 km (3 mi.) from the salty waters, and it is separated by the Coastal Range in the west, which leaves it isolated and makes it a unique place for viticulture. The cool conditions and long ripening periods make it an ideal place for Sauvignon Blanc, yielding wines with crisp and lean acidity. Winemaking
•Hand-harvested grapes.
•Harvest moment is decided by tasting (balance of aromas / acidity / concentration).
•Each lot in the vineyard is vinified separately.
•Blend of different lots and clones.
•Fermentation in stainless steel tanks.
•Natural settling. Tasting Note Color: yellow pale. Aromas: floral, mineral and fruity notes like grapefruit and peach. Palate: round with balanced acidity and persistent finish. Food Serving Suggestions Ideal to pair with seafood, ceviches and fresh salads with goat cheese. Serve at a temperature of 12°C / 54°F. Ageing Potential Drink now through the end of next year. Winemaker: Alejandro Wedeles"

  x $12
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Almost clear yellow, with clear edges.

Nose: Light lime and lemon citrus fruit here, slight hoppy aromas, then a bit of flint near the rim.

Palate: Extremely light-bodied, this shows off zesty citrus acidity, with a nice bit of flint and slight florals, but the rest of the wine is rather unconcentrated, leading to flashes of interest alongside imbalance. - 06/11/2014


Jun. 1, 2014 Rodney Strong Russian River Valley Estate Pinot Noir 2012

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Personal Notes

Received as a sample from the winery as part of my sponsorship package for the RSV Vineman Monte Rio Olympic Triathlon, 05/23/14.
Drank with a nice and light pasta dinner made by the Lady, 06/01/14.
RSV: "our story
At Rodney Strong Vineyards we focus on modern artisan winemaking,
exclusively from Sonoma County, California. Our family-owned winery is
committed to quality wines and to protecting our resources for the future.
We are solar powered, certified sustainable, practice Fish Friendly Farming
and we are Sonoma County’s first carbon neutral winery.
History
Rod Strong was among the first modern wine pioneers with a vision to
plant Pinot Noir in the Russian River Valley. In 1968 he planted our heritage
River East Vineyard in the alluvial clay-loam soils adjacent to the winery in
Healdsburg. Today the Russian River Valley is well established as one of
the premier Pinot Noir growing regions in the world, and we continue to
rely on the original River East Vineyard as a core contributor to our estate
vineyard bottling.
The Vineyard
The 2012 vintage started off warm and dry, with little to no frost. By midsummer
people were beginning to whisper about how perfect the growing
season was going. Rain-free, warm days and cool nights were the rule,
with no storms or heat spikes. The real cheering started when the Pinot
Noir harvest began on September 12th and we picked the last of it on
September 29th.
tasting notes
Soft and silky, with intriguing rose petal and crushed pomegranate aromas,
this medium bodied wine was aged for 10 months in small French oak barrels,
which added a hint of toasty vanilla and spice complexity. Ideal for current
enjoyment, this Pinot Noir will age nicely over the next two to four years.
2012 PINOT NOIR
estate vineyards
Winemaker Rick Sayre
Alcohol 14.5%
TA 0.54 g/100 mL
pH 3.69
Appellation Russian River Valley
Sonoma County
Cellar &
Fermentation
10 months in 100%
French oak barrels"

  x $25
Tasting Notes
& Comments

Color: Lighter ruby core here, with very light ruby edges.

Nose: A beautiful nose here, elegant, with great rose petal floral notes and a light toast, followed by bright and beautiful cranberry, raspberry, and rhubarb fruit notes.

Palate: The elegance of this wine also continues here, with a light body, great bright acidity and very silky tannin and mouthfeel. The fruit is also very good, a bright and juicy raspberry and cranberry medley, finishing with a light toast, earth, and those floral notes from the nose. Good. - 06/02/2014


Statistics for Drxeno

Total wines logged: 2674

Varieties: 338

Number of wines in cellar: 108 (112 bottles)

Number of Notes: 2513

Number of Comments: 2532

Average rating: 3.5

Favorites: Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay

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