1. Gamay de Bouze: This is a teinturier version of Gamay. It was discovered near the town of Bouze, near Beaune many yrs ago.
2. EdStJohn: Another very strong lineup from SteveEdmunds. The HoG is, yr in & yr out, one of my favorite bargain whites, along w/ the Ojai white. The '12 was noticeably richer/riper than the '13 but I preferred the latter because I found it a bit more interesting. Most in my group preferred the '12 because of its greater ripeness. Steve has one of the few true Gamay (Noir a jus blanc) plantings in Calif. Most of what is often labeled as Gamay is actually the Loire variety Valdigue, The TTB permits either naming I believe.
3. Ribolla: Another one of those God-forsaken grapes, according to word out of Monktown. When Darrell first turned me on to Friulian wines yrs ago, I fell in love w/ RG and TocaiFriuliano. RG has a subtle white pepper character w/ an underlying stony minerality. According to DarrellCorti, it is the 2'nd most tannic white grape variety after Furmint. Many of the Friulian versions of RG are made w/ skin-contact and they can often have a strong/tannic/savory character.
GeorgeVare fell in love w/ RG in a visit to Friuli and brought back cuttings to plant in his vnyd NW of Napa. He has been sharing his Ribolla grapes w/ a number of winemakers to see what they can do w/ the variety. They get together at RibollaFest once a yr to taste what they have wrought and discuss Ribolla. With George's death over a yr ago, it's not clear what will happen to the RG vnyd.
Of these four RG's, my preference was the Miani. Of the three Miani '12's I've tried (the Friulano and the sauvignon being the others), this RG was the least impressive. They have all been amazingly good wines and all seamlessly crafted. This RG was much more understated & restrained than the other two; less about power and more about balance. Amazing wines, the Miani's.
This Matthiasson is, I believe, Steve's first off their own Estate planting of RG. He has made RG from
George's grapes for a number of yrs now. It, too, was an impressive RG, w/ a Calif expression of the grape.
I hope there will be more interest in RG in Calif; despite it being labeled as a god-forsaken grape. The
Terrizzi's/Giornata have a new planting down in the TempletonGap and FloridaJimCowan is making RG from a RRV planting. So word is getting out, I think.