A Late Harvest Riesling
Scintilla Sonoma Vineyard
The wine shimmers in the glass as it releases its aroma of ripe pear, baked apple and a touch of apricot. The palate snaps to attention with characteristics of crisp apples backed by honey and slate-like minerals. The wine is both refreshing with bright acidity and mouth filling with a rich, decadent never-ending finish. The challenge will be to stop yourself from opening every bottle before you experience the complexities that time will bestow on this wine-of-the-ages. Enjoy with a first course of foie gras or crab, or after dinner with a cheese course or a not-to-sweet fruit, nut or baked dessert with crème fraiche.
A Date with Royalty...
a calculatingly naughty wine!
If the Ice Queen made wine… I.Q. would be it. Take very ripe Riesling from RSV’s organically farmed Scintilla Sonoma Vineyard, blow a freezing wind upon it, press the frozen grapes to force out a wee bit of sweet nectar, then ferment the juice to just 10.7% alc. (leaving 17.6 degrees brix) and you have a stunning, beautifully sweet beverage that can seduce anyone to the dark side.
When I think of Riesling, I think apples. The deliciously sweet yet ethereal I.Q. - with its racy acidity, is a perfect foil for the nutty frangipane and rich caramel surrounding the apples. While the inherent acidity of the apples themselves plays nicely with the Queen of wines.
Until the next wine…
The vintage of 2012 will go down in California history as the year of elegant wines: a beautiful set, a long, cool growing season, unhurried harvest, and an extended fall with no rain. If a winemaker couldn’t make good wine in 2012, he or she should think about a career change. Not only were we presented with the opportunity to make good wine, we had the potential to make great wine.
Riesling on RSV’s organically farmed Scintilla Sonoma Vineyard was left on the vine late into the fall (November 14, 2012) developing flavor as the sugars increased. Since the fall season was warm and dry, a decision was made to allow the fruit to achieve maximum ripeness before freezing the grapes. By pressing frozen fruit, water in the grapes is left behind so only the sweet nectar is extracted and fermented. This precious essence of the season is liquid gold - it took two and a third tons of grapes to make just 174 cases of half bottles of I.Q. - that’s 2.56 pounds for each little bottle.