Saturday, November 7, 2009

Beauty And The Beast

The beauty of being a wine blogger is that every once in awhile, I stumble upon greatness--the chance to try something rare, something beautiful and share it with my public. My beautiful moment came several weeks ago when I received a set of samples from Sobon Wines. I wasn't familiar with them, but I was intrigued because another beautiful thing I love is the fact that there are so many undiscovered small family wineries on the west coast and my goal is to discover as many as possible and bring them to you!

Sobon Wines is a family-owned winery located in the Shenandoah Valley appellation of Amador County in Northern California. They have been a presence there for over thirty years. Most of their grapes are sourced in the area they are in, however, every once in a while they will source some excellent quality grapes from other appellations in California. Recently, they started a new label featuring the wines they produced from grapes that were outsourced. The label is called NOBOS (which obviously is Sobon spelled backwards).

The first sample I tried was the 2007 NOBOS Monterey Chardonnay. This wine has grapes sourced from Scheid Vineyards in Monterey. That may mean nothing to the average reader but please keep in mind that this vineyard produces some of the best Monterey wines out there. When I was first introduced to Chardonnay (a good ten years ago or so), the predominant style out there was big, buttery, a lot of vanilla and oak. As the years went on, the style of California Chardonnay went toward a different direction--back to the clean, lightly or unoaked, unpretentious and true to the grape flavor of Chardonnay. It took me awhile to get used to this new style but I eventually did. Fast forward to 2009--I still miss that big, fruity, buttery flavor sometimes. Guess what? The 2007 NOBOS Monterey Chardonnay brought that back for me but not in a huge, over the top way. It was fresh but full of tropical fruit and rich vanilla crème brulée. I enjoyed every moment of drinking it! Realizing how much I miss that style, I wanted more! Full, rich mouthfeel and tropical goodness with a finish that doesn't stop. At $20.00, this was more than a steal! I would run away with case loads of it if I could! I feel I am happier for discovering it!

And that, my friends, is the beast of it all. I can't just go to the store and buy it when I want. But I can order it online and have it shipped to me! Just go to and discover this winery for yourselves. It may just be the best thing you do today!

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