Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Winemaker/Owner Shane Finley from Shane Wine Cellars in California was in Town – the Washington DC area - to Presented his Wines, USA

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Shane Finley from Shane Wine Cellars in California

Winemaker Shane Finley from Sonoma County was in town – the Washington DC area – to present his new wines.

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Shane Finley in 2011 in Virginia

The Wine House Presented Winemaker Shane Finley from Russian River Valley in California at a Shane Wine Cellars Winemaker Dinner

Shane Finley and Shane Wine Cellars

Shane’s main job is Winemaker at Lynmar in the Russian River Valley. From 2006 through 2012, he made wine at Kosta Browne (winner of Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year award in 2011) while running his own small operation on the side. The quantities are small, but what we tasted was great. This is a very promising winemaker.

Pictures: Shane Finley from Shane Wine Cellars in California

Shane is also a great communicator. Well, he studied English and received a B.A. in English from the Virginia Military Institute. With that, he headed to New York City to take a corporate insurance position. It was in New York where he was bitten by the wine bag. He changed course, and worked as intern for a number of years wineries around the world. Without any formal training in wine, he started at the bottom and began to work his way up.

Pictures: Shane Finley, Annette Schiller, wine tours by ombiasy, Christian G.E. Schiller and Al McCosh, Nice Legs (Distributor of Shane Wine Cellars Wines)

He started out as a harvest intern with Copain Wines in 2001. Then, he traveled to Australia to work the 2002 harvest with Torbreck Vintners in the Barossa Valley. From there, he continued his globe-trotting and spent one year in France's Northern Rhone working for Pierre Gaillard in his Cote Rotie, Condrieu and Saint Joseph vineyards. Shane returned to California in the summer of 2003 and resumed working for Copain Wines. 2 years later, he accepted the Assistant Winemaker post at Paul Hobbs winery and in spring of 2006, Shane became Associate Winemaker at Kosta Browne Wines. At the same time, in his spare time, Shane started his own wine production - Shane Wine Cellars.

Pictures: Shane Finley, Shane Wine Cellars

The Wines Shane Poured

Grenache Blanc, CAMP 4 VINEYARD, Santa Ynez Valley, 2012 $29

Sourced from the Santa Barbara County. No new oak, no malolactic fermentation.

The immediate expression of pineapple, Meyer lemon, papaya, and floral notes leap from the glass. A translucent pale color is surrounded by vibrant acidity and focused with nectarine, peach, and stone fruit accents. The mineral finish lingers with hints of grapefruit, Asian pear, and seashells. A very fresh wine.

Rose Ma Fille Sonoma County, 2012 $22

90% Syrah and 10% Grenache. “This was barrel-fermented, had minimal skin contact and did not go through malolactic fermentation.” said Shane. Was 3 months in used oak – no new oak. Shane told us he was aiming for a Tavel style with this wine, and he's done a nice job.

A Rose which reminded me very much of the South of France, fresh, fruity, vibrant acidity with hints of citrus and strawberries on the nose, great summer wine.

Pictures: Shane Finley, Shane Wine Cellars

Pinot Noir "The Charm" Russian River 2011 $47

40% new oak; whole cluster fermentation of 15% of the grapes.

The Charm harnesses dark cherry, rose petal, raspberry, and baking spice notes. Well structured tannins mix seamlessly with supple acidity. In the mid-palate, cranberry, blueberry, plum and dark chocolate tones unfurl. The wine finishes with sandalwood, graphite, and wild berry accents.

Syrah The Villain North Coast 2011 $39

100% Syrah. Whole cluster fermentation.

An immediate attack of infused berry flavors. Ripe elements of boysenberry, blueberry, and kirsch explode from the glass. Pretty floral elements of orange blossom and white rose intermingle with lasting impressions of huckleberry and blackberries. Hints of slate and wet stone accent the potpourri of flavors. The dense and structured palate is accentuated with dark chocolate, white pepper, and lavender.

Syrah Jemrose Vineyard Bennett Valley 2009 $39

A mélange of fruit and spice flows from the glass. Heady white pepper mingles with boysenberry, plum, blueberries, and dark chocolate. Accents of tobacco leaf, violets, and bacon fat mesh with cassis, mint, and green peppercorns. The wine imbues the site. There is freshness and brightness in the glass. This is a California Syrah with a Northern Rhône bent. Asian spices, chewy tannins, and subtle brown sugar hints finish the wine.

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