Friday, August 31, 2007

Maloy O'Neil Tasting; Happy Happy Gioi Gioi

Maloy O'Neil Tasting at Wades Wines.
It was a hot friday night here in socal, so we decided to head over to Wades. We had visited Maloy O'Neil in Paso before and had enjoyed many of their wines. Shannon O'Neil the winemaker was pouring the wines.
Our picks from the tasting.

  • 2004 Fremere, 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot,15% Cabernet Franc, Paso Robles
  • 2004 Malbec, Paso Robles 85%Malbec, 10%Cabenet Sauvignon, 5%Merlot,* Only 3 cases left according to Shannon O'Neil (winemaker)
  • Gioi, Paso Robles 60% Sangiovese, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 5% Zinfandel. This made me crave spaghetti and meatballs almost immediately. Aged in American oak according to the winemaker. It had that distinctive caramel nose of most American oak aged wines. I love American oak with italian varietals. Yum!
  • 2005 Easy Ed Red, 50%Cabernet Sauvignon, 50%Syrah, Paso Robles for the price point ($20 a bottle) Good QPR The name says what you need to know. This wine is easy like Sunday morning.
We also go to learn a bit more about Lagrein
Maloy O'Neil makes a Lagrein ( blended with Sangiovese) According to Shannon O'Neil there is only 1 vineyard in California(French Camp Vineyard in Paso Robles) to source this grape and he, Chris Whitcraft and Mosby have been working with the varietal in the California.
I have Chris Whitcraft's Lagrein in the wine rack after visiting him last year during harvest. When I tasted the Whitcraft Lagrein last year, it was huge and completely fascinating in its brawniness. I think I started to hear the opening riff of Voodoo Child after just one sip. This wine was not shy. Shannon O'Neil said after tasting 100% Lagrein he decided to blend with Sangiovese to perhaps lend it to being more approachable. He 's got me curious :)
Fun Fact : Lagrein (a red Northern Italian varietal) is the varietal with the least acreage in California (56 acres )


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