2005 Alban Edna Valley Grenache

SKU #1124746 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The outstanding 2005 Grenache includes about 15% Syrah in the blend. More structured, restrained, and backward than either the 2004 or 2006, the 2005 possesses plenty of tannin along with enormous quantities of black cherry and blackberry fruit, medium to full body, good acidity, and a long, fresh finish. I am not a great believer in aging California Grenache for more than 10-12 years, but this cuvee may run the path effectively. In fact, it probably needs several years of bottle age in order to resolve some of its tannin. (RP)  (8/2007)

94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Inky purple. Explosively perfumed nose displays an exotic array of red and dark berry preserves, candied flowers and incense. Deep and chewy, with concentrated blackberry and licorice flavors. Supple tannins provide a gentle framework but this is dominated by its remarkable depth of sweet fruit today. Alban aged this in 75% new French oak, but I don't find a trace of it. When I mentioned that I have found recent vintages of this wine to have an almost Syrah-like character, Alban responded that "since 2000, there's no question that the Grenache here has become more powerful, probably due to the increased maturity of the vines."  (12/2007)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Smoke, tar, wild berry and dried currant provide a dense, meaty core of flavor, with some hefty tannins. This clearly requires time and patience.  (11/2007)

K&L Notes

There were just over 1500 bottles of this outstanding Grenache produced, so this is a rare find!

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Price: $129.99

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- Fat, ripe and rich with ample fruit and vibrant acidity, wines made from Grenache are easy to love. While its origins are still under dispute - some suggest Spain, where it is called Garnacha, while others say it came first from Sardinia, where it is called Cannonau - it is inarguably one of the most planted varietals in the world. A hearty grape, Grenache does well in hot, dry regions and its sturdy stalk also makes it well-suited to withstand blustery conditions like the Provençal Mistral. It ripens at relatively high sugar levels, which translates to higher potential alcohol in the wines it produces. Grenache may be most famous in the Southern Rhône areas such as Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Gigondas where it has long been an important component of delicious blends. But it's also the source of the crisp rosés from Tavel, Lirac and Provence, and age-worthy vins doux naturels like Rivsaltes and Banyuls. Grenache is also found in large swaths of northeastern Spain, in Navarre, in Rioja, where it plays a supporting role in blends with Tempranillo, and in the distinctive wines of Priorat. The grape was once the most widely planted varietal in Australia, though Shiraz and Cabernet have overtaken it. In California, Grenache plantings have dwindled from their heyday in the San Joaquin Valley, but it is starting to see a resurgence, albeit in smaller plantings, where other Rhône varietals thrive.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year.