The Cats Go Marching Two By Two Hurrah Hurrah

I (and others I’m sure) often refer to getting bloggers to do the same thing at the same time as herding cats. It’s difficult and often pointless. With that in mind, as Jefe tried to herd us on our whirlwind tour of downtown Murphys, the occasional “Meow” could be heard escaping from various wine blog folks! Overall I think we had 16 wine bloggers come up to Murphys. An amazing feat when you consider our final destination was 3 hours in the opposite direction!  For our first tour stop, we headed to Hatcher, a winery I requested to visit.  I had been there last year and I absolutely wanted more of their Mourvedre. Alas. Sold out. Just my luck! However, I loved the Hatcher stemless glasses with their logo etched in!

2008 Pinot Grigio: $16. Floral, honey, lemon, melon, crisp, citrus, light, orange.

2007 Grenache Rose: (I lost the tasting sheet at this point and don’t have price points for the rest of the wines.) Floral, cranberry, lime, strawberry, dry, flowers, red fruit.

2006 Estate Zinfandel: Blackberries, cream, pepper, spice, black fruit, vanilla, oak, some red fruit.

2006 Barbera: Spice, pepper, earth, red fruit, smoky, strawberry, raspberry, tart fruit, spice.

2005 Tempranillo: Floral, violets, black, dark fruit, lean.

2006 Meritage: Cranberry, black fruit, roses, flowers, anise, strawberry, oak.

2006 Syrah: Anise, spice, vanilla, pepper, black fruit, blackberry, black plum, nice structure. I bought a bottle to take home.

2006 Port: Raisins, chocolate, blackberry.

I’m glad we managed to be herded into Hatcher. They are making some excellent wines and since it’s underground, it’s a cool escape on a hot day!

Sharon (NoReinsGIrl) finds a cool corner.

Sharon (NoReinsGIrl) finds a cool corner.


Drinking Wines From Calaveras

As the weather warms (hush, 40 degrees is warm in February!) my thoughts have been turning to whites and rosés as I try to hurry in the spring.  It’s coming, I swear, my daffodils and irises are poking through the ground and I think I saw my hyacinths coming up as well!  So now is the perfect time to dive into some of the wines I picked up in Murphys when I visited last fall.  I chose the 2007 Hatcher Grenache Rosé tonight.  It cost me around $11 at the winery, had a real cork closure, and clocked in at 12.6% alcohol by volume.  I’ll be heading back up to Calaveras before the Wine Blogger Conference this year, “dragging” Thea with me, so maybe we’ll have time to stop in again.

I first noticed how incredibly dark the color on this Rosé was.  It almost looked like a very light red wine rather than a Rosé.  On the nose I found banana, like the Laffy Taffy banana flavor, strawberry, cherry candy, lime, white pepper, and red licorice.  In the mouth I found the wine to be nice and smooth with a peppery kick.  I got flavors of raspberry, strawberry, cherry, a banana aftertaste, lime, and some other underlying citrus.  I liked how juicy the wine was and at $11 this was a fantastic deal.

Down Underground to Get Out of the Rain (Sun)

(Really, it was sunny and beautiful on my whole California trip and I wanted to spend all day outside.  Alas 😉 , the lure of the call of wine is just too strong and often draws me in.)

My next stop in Murphys was Hatcher Winery. Hatcher’s tasting room is in the basement of a building, down a short alley, down a flight of stairs, into a cave-like space.  I loved this tasting room.  The tasting bar is made of a beautiful stone top, spans the entire long-side of the tasting room, and could easily accommodate 20 or more people. On the wall, a gorgeous candelabra casts a glow across the dark tasting room, flickering candlelight lights your tasting glass.

2007 Viognier: $24. Honey, peach, pear, spice, toffee, crisp, dry, sharp finish.

2007 Grenache Rose: $16. Strawberry, lime, lemon, citrus, cherry, dry as a bone.  Loved this wine, I took one home.

2006 Zinfandel: Pepper, violets, berries, red fruit, spice, cinnamon, tannins.

2006 Barbera: $24. 18 months in oak. From Amador County. Smoky, vanilla, perfumed, leather, red fruit, big berries, raspberries.

2006 Merlot: $22. Grass, leather, red fruit, earth, berries, cherries, smoky vanilla.

2005 Cabernet Franc: $24. Strawberry, cherry, smoke, vanilla, nutmeg, cherries, tobacco leaf, roses.

2006 Mourvedre: $24. Smoky, campfire, earth, black cherry, dark and earthy, fresh fruit, good structure.  My favorite of the tasting, I took home 2 bottles.

I cannot wait for the wine from my Murphys adventures to arrive! I’m quite excited to mix in some wines from a different region into my repertoire, not to mention how good the quality overall of everything I tasted was.  Some of these wines are going to live in my basement for a while, but the whites and roses should make it up here in short order.