Shatter is a delicious collaboration between Dave Phinney (Orin Swift Cellars) and Joel Gott. Highly recommended.
Shatter comes from the small town of Maury in the Roussillon region of France. The hillside grenache vines were planted over 60 years ago in black schist, a slate-like, rocky soil common to the area. Though nutrient-poor, it retains heat well, allowing the slow-ripening grenache to reach full maturity through cool nights. Tough soil, strong winds and hot days push the vines and cause shatter, or coulure, in the grape clusters, naturally thinning fruit from the vines and producing more intensely concentrated flavors. After harvest, the fruit was cold-soaked for 30 days to help further concentrate the wine, then fermented and aged at Dave's winery in Maury.
previous vintage 92 Points Robert Parker: "A collaboration between Napa's Joel Gott and Dave Phinney, the semi-opaque Cotes Catalanes Grenache is a smoking blend of 100% Grenache that comes from the singular, black schist soils located around the village of Maury, in the Agly Valley in the Roussillon. Aged in French oak (a small part being new) and hitting 15.6% natural alcohol, this sexy, full-bodied, pedal-to-the-metal effort bears plenty of resemblance to the old-vine, 100% Grenache efforts coming from Chateauneuf du Pape. Kirsch liqueur, blackberry, toasted spice, garrigue and hints of vanilla bean all flow nicely to a seamless, silky, yet decadently styled red that has fine tannin, and a blockbuster, heady finish. It will certainly not appease those looking for lightweight aromas and flavors, but count me a fan. The oak is still present, so give it a year in bottle; it will drink nicely for another 5-6 years."
D66 is the new release from Orin Swift's winery and vineyards in Maury, France.
95 Points Robert Parker: "In the same mold as the 2012, the 2013 Cotes Catalanes Grenache D66 is being held for six months in bottle prior to release. Completely destemmed (as are all the wines here) and aged in 30% new barrels, it has elegant, lively notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, pepper and violets to go with a medium to full-bodied, balanced and yet still hedonistic feel on the palate. A slightly tweaked blend of 75% Grenache, 15% Syrah and 10% Carignan, this is a more civilized version of this cuvee that still won’t disappoint with regard to depth, flavor or length. Drink it over the coming 5-7 years."
The small town of Maury is in the outer Roussillon very close to the Spanish border and nestled in the Pyrénées-Orientales where owner Dave Phinney owns approximately 235 acres of mostly Grenache vines with a little Syrah and Carignan. The majority of the vines were planted more than 60 years ago, with many of the vineyards being even older. The terrain is dominated by black schist with a couple small deposits of Granite and Limestone in red rocky soils known as Angile. Schist is a crystalline rock based soil that retains heat well but is poor in organic nutrients and nitrogens. In other words, these vines really have to struggle. The result is a very dark, concentrated, and rich wine.
The Orin Swift 2013 D66 has a very dark, opaque red color with subtle aromas of toasted oak, ripe blueberry jam and dried rose petal. The entry is mouth coating and lush. Opulent plum and ultra ripe cherry are balanced with asian spices and a bright vein of minerality and acidity that give great structure, weight and balance to the long finish. The tannin chains are long and will lend to ageability for 5 to 10 years. A delicious blend of Syrah, Grenache and Carignan.
New release of Orin Swift's Papillon Cabernet has arrived! Fast becoming a cult classic, grab a few bottles before it goes away.
95 Points Robert Parker: "The 2013 Papillon Proprietary Red is 100% from Napa and is a Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. This killer wine has an inky purple color and offers notes of espresso roast intermixed with white chocolate, creme de cassis, blackberry and a touch of toasty oak. The wine was aged 16 months in French oak, of which 40% was new. Broad and opulent, with great intensity, purity and depth, this is another stunner from Dave Phinney, a.k.a. Orin Swift. Drink: 2015 – 2025."
Orin Swift Cellars is best known for The Prisoner Zinfandel blend, one of our most popular wines the last few years. Winemaker Dave Phinney has turned his midas touch at creating delicious blends to produce the third vintage of Papillon, a stunning bordeaux-blend from choice Napa Valley vineyards in Howell Mountain, Rutherford, Oakville and St. Helena. 60% Cabernet, 37% Merlot, and 2% Petit Verdot, and 1% Malbec. A beautiful, rich young Cabernet that has been getting serious buzz in the wine world,
A delicious new Chardonnay from Orin Swift Cellars.
96 Points Robert Parker: "This is amazing wine, a gorgeous, full-throttle, honeyed wine with a light-gold color, oodles of tropical fruits including pineapple and mango, rose petal and floral notes, and beautifully integrated oak (aged in 40% new French oak on its lees for 11months). This full-throttle wine is completely different and more individualistic than anything I've ever tasted. It is a magnificent, full-throttle, exuberant dry white to drink over the next 3-4 year."
The 2013 Mannequin Chardonnay, which draws fruit from diverse regions of Northern California such as the Carneros Basin and the Sonoma Coast, is actually a blend of 76% Chardonnay, 8% Viognier, 6% Marsanne, 5% Grenache Blanc, 3% Muscat and 2% Roussanne.