Sarah's Vineyard2005 Roussanne, Besson Vineyard
(Santa Clara Valley)
Not too many of these bathing beauties are available on the market from California wineries: that’s too bad, since Roussanne is really quite a sexy creature. This Rhone babe makes such a fabulous food wine when picked with good acidity levels.
It’s really nice to have a good Roussanne from a local vineyard here in the Bay Area. Located in a secluded and pastoral portion of Santa Clara County, Sarah’s Vineyard has a good lineup of wines, both estate grown and sourced from local vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountain and Santa Clara Valley appellations.
Most Roussanne’s I’ve had are from Lodi and should not be seen in bathing suits. This one really is quite the model of two-pieced decorum, however. Barrel-fermented in new French, and then aged in a combo of oak and steel, the richness from the oak adds flesh right where you want it without overdoing it. The nose is heady and filled with baked pears, tropical fruits and hints of jasmine. On the palate, it is plenty rich and oozing of pineapple, apricot, mangoes, and banana crème bruleé. Oh yum: rich beautiful curves on a lean, sturdy frame, and yet the acidity is quite lovely and carries the wine just like a personal flotation device (i.e., raft) through the cool waters of your favorite pool. In fact, this wine would be delightful on a summer day with a fruit salad and perhaps a nice hunk of Humboldt Fog goat cheese. It is pretty to look at, fun to whiff and whirl and satisfying to quaff. The creaminess of the mouthfeel would also make it a great match for seafood risotto with fresh spring peas and a squeeze of Meyer lemon.
Reviewed July 25, 2007 by Laura Ness.
A wine writer and wine judge for major publications and competitions around the country, Laura Ness likens wine to the experience of music. She is always looking for that ubiquitous marriage of rhythm, melody, and flawless execution. What is good music? You know it when you get lost in it. What is good wine? It is music in your mouth.