Cuvaison 2017 Vintage.
Disclaimer: We received the Cuvaison 2017 wines reviewed here as samples.
Back in 2016, we visited the Cuvaison winery in the Carneros region of Napa Valley. We had enjoyed that experience, so we were eager to try the current vintage of their Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
Cuvaison 2017 Chardonnay
The nose led with vanilla with supporting aromas of pineapple. The taste of the wine was in sharp and pleasing contrast to that nose. The nose had led me to expect a wine heavy in oak. What I tasted was more nuanced and enjoyable. A crisp acidity with green apple and a swirl of tropical fruit. I like my Chardonnay austere and acid driven. Amber prefers a style with more body. This Chardonnay pleased us both.
The Chardonnay spent eleven months in French oak. Just 25% of those barrels were new; hence the lack of overpowering oak on the palate.
Cuvaison 2017 Pinot Noir
The Cuvaison 2017 Pinot Noir was translucent ruby in colour. Perhaps a little on the dark side for this varietal. The nose was of lush redcurrant with an earthy backdrop. As with the Chardonnay this nose suggested a style that differs from my preference. However, as with the Chardonnay, the balance in the mouth was better than the bouquet implied.
The Pinot led with mouth watering freshness and notes of sour cherry. In the mid-palate mushrooms and a hint of cola emerged. This was supported by dusty tannins. The finish left a buttery mouthfeel. A good Pinot with a delicate balance between fruit and umami.
The wine spent eleven months in French oak, with a third of these barrels being new oak. This Pinot has a alcohol content of 14%
Both of these wines demonstrate balance and restraint. The Chardonnay avoiding over-use of oak. The Pinot not falling into the over-ripe fruit trap of too many Californina Pinot.
The Cuvaison 2017 Pinot is available for order at $42
The Cuvaison 2017 Chardonnay is avilable for order at $26.
You can order both wines here