Monday, June 25, 2007

Witch Creek Winery; Carlsbad, California

While driving along scenic Highway 101 we noticed the Carlsbad tasting facility for Witch Creek Winery. After a quick u-turn, we entered the tasting room to discover that the winery makes several excellent wines from grapes grown throughout California. Out of close to 20 wines available, we sampled six. The reds were outstanding, smooth yet full bodied. Our favorite was the Tre Amici, a blend of Nebbiolo, Barbera, and Syrah. The wine is spicy up front with a smooth low-tannic finish. Another good blend was the 2005 Dave’s Pretty Good Red, made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Brunello. This wine is more than pretty good now, and the winery recommends aging a few more years, when the wine should peak. The final blend was the 2004 Guadalupe Full Monty – made from Montepulciano and Aglianico grapes grown in Mexico. Like the Tre Amici, this wine is initially spicy and then finishes smooth. We also tasted two vintage wines the 2004 El Dorado Merlot and the 2005 Nebbiolo. While each was good, we preferred the blends – they just seemed to have more texture. We finished the tasting with their awesome Muscat Love (Orange Muscat) and Hard Apple Cider. These sweet wines are both recommended, especially the Muscat with its floral aroma and vanilla finish. On our next trip to southern California we plan on visiting Witch Creek’s Julian tasting facility in the San Diego County Mountains.

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