Friday, September 17, 2010

Napa Chick and SoCo Kid: Mission 1, Napa

We wanted to stick with small production.  Ms. Sattui had a vision for the day, and way for this project to pervade.  She discloses the itinerary, and I had no objection.  Elation, my only visible tremor.  Both of us parked near La Luna Taqueria on Rutherford Road, which is literally steps away from Location 1, Elizabeth Spencer.  Nice little tasting Room, with an even more sightly, not to mention relaxing, patio.  Our host Pamela began with a crisp Chenin Blanc, and finished with a bold Cab (Napa Chick’s pour) and peppery Zin (mine).  Danica and I had contrasting assessments on the last pours.  She leant towards my Zin, as I did her Cab.  Again illuminating the subjective seduction of the nebular wine universe.  Didn’t want to be too impulsive, so I withheld in buying, even with the impressively reasonable price point.

At Kuleto Estate, I was dumbfounded.  Both D and I couldn’t help but persist, nonstop, with pictures.  Everything was worth a frame or two, eight.  An enveloping scenic romance that I have never experienced.  A visitor is high atop the Napa world, surrounded by green, natural elements, and great wine.  During the tasting, our host Meg took us through a flight of impressive stature, Chardonnay to the last Cabernet.  She was even nice enough to pair the wine with delectable cheeses.  I couldn’t resist the compulsion to buy the ’06 Syrah, with its peppery intro and subsequent sexy scamper, and the ’05 Cab, providing a smooth syrupy sense, continuing gracefully with a cloud-like back-palate and finish.  Meg thanked us for coming, but we weren’t leaving.  Still more pics to capture.

Location 3, Piña.  Small barrel Room.  Stimulating and provocative.  Larry gently urged us to settle in with some of the 2009 Chardonnay.  Thick and complex, but not overt or audacious.  He then took us on a vertical flight of Cabs, ’06, ’07, and ’08.  Again, Danica and I contrasted in our respective proclivities, evaluations.  I was seduced by the ’07’s Gothic slither of a dark, voluptuous flavor profile.  D embraced the ’08, with its sweeter flutter of a note pattern.  I had to get one of those ’07’s, knowing my pocket book would scorn this whimsical penman in the coming days, perhaps on the ride back to SoCo.  Before departure, Napa Chick and I decided to walk around the property.  We stopped at a picnic area up a humble hill, to relax, and take in yet another Napa Valley view, the Silverado zone.  We both appreciated the moment, the surroundings that it garnished.  

Debriefing, Rutherford Grill, where the day ignited.  With a blogging partner, the exploratory experience of this multi-faceted wine dimension was immeasurably enhanced.  I was enriched, reminded that wine and the occasions it creates are more enjoyable when shared.  Wine is friends, new friends.  Another reality I appreciated whilst delighting in spinach-artichoke dip, was the grand and glorious valley of Napa itself.  A new experience, deliciously overwhelming, encapsulating.  Counting the days till my return.  So much to see.  Innumerable times to in this log trap.  Till then, I sip, sip... 

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