WineSmith2005 Penny Farthing Cabernet Sauvignon
Penny Farthing is a creation of GrapeCraft, a wine producing company within the Vinovation portfolio that also includes WineSmith. Brothers Brian and Clark Smith oversee the many facets of this business, which range from vineyard and winemaking consulting to winemaking. For this wine, Clark Smith looked to Bordeaux as an inspiration. Though the appellation is listed as California, the main fruit source is a vineyard in Lodi. Winemaker Smith delayed the malolactic fermentation, gave the wine “early intensive microbüllage for structural refinement,” weekly bâtonage for three months, and then aged the wine in medium and heavily toasted Alliers oak barrels from France. He then adjusted the alcohol to 13.5 percent to make the wine easy-going and immediately accessible.
The wine is bright ruby and is of medium viscosity. On the nose, the wine gives aromas of plum, tar, stewed meats, and barnyard – all very un-Californian smells. The palate also reflects this old world style, with notes of braised short ribs, osso bucco, plum, black currant, fig, and tar. The tannins are slightly chalky and become more so on the finish, so this is a wine that would perform beautifully at the table, if not as a cocktail.
Reviewed February 20, 2008 by Catherine Fallis.
Other reviewed wines from WineSmith
(California)Catherine Fallis 1/18/2008
2002 Faux Chablis
(Napa Valley)Adam Dial 11/28/2007
Founder and President of Planet Grape LLC, a company committed to bringing the joy of wine, food, and good living into the lives of everyday people, Catherine is creator of the “grape goddess guides to good living,” a series of books, television presentations, seminars, and e-learning programs. The fifth woman in the world to become a Master Sommelier, grape goddess Catherine Fallis is still very much down-to-earth.