2013 Amapola Creek "Cuvée Alis" Sonoma Valley Rhône Blend

SKU #1399437 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2013 Cuvée Alis Estate (66% Grenache, 22% Mourvèdre and 12% Syrah) is a hefty, high-octane style (15.6% alcohol) with loads of kirsch liqueur, pepper, lavender, earth and underbrush. It is Provençal, deep, full-bodied, and a total lusty treat. Drink it over the next 5-6 years. It’s hard to believe that Dick Arrowood, who starred at Château St. Jean in the 1970s, has logged 50 years of winemaking in Northern California, primarily in Sonoma. He pretty much put Beerenauslese and Trockenbeerenauslese-styled Rieslings on the map, developed an ambitious program at Château St. Jean for single vineyard Chardonnays, and gets little credit as one of the early pioneers and believers in the Rhône Ranger movement. I had a chance to taste with him at his winery just north of Sonoma, and there’s no resting on his laurels, even after a career that started in 1965 and continues 50+ years later. (RP)  (3/2016)

K&L Notes

Amapola Creek winery is the latest project from legendary winemaker Richard Arrowood. Richard is one of the early greats in Sonoma, and has made wine in the area since 1974. Working as winemaker for Chateau St. Jean for many years and eventually founding Arrowood winery, Richard has finally “retired” to focus on his estate vineyard and winery, Amapola Creek. Few know the climate and terroir of Sonoma Valley better than Richard. While Sonoma Valley is mostly known for Cabernet, Richard feels that a Rhône blend has a calling here too, and he makes a masterful one, named after his wife Alis. The 2013 Amapola Creek “Cuvée Alis” Sonoma Valley Red Blend brings out a different side of the classic Rhône blend. This wine is also Grenache dominated, but includes a good proportion of Mourvèdre in the blend, lending the wine weight and deep black fruit. With bottle aging, this wine has also developed a beautiful savory olive and cured-meat element, which adds further complexity. A great example of the more savory and full bodied Rhône style, Cuvée Alis would work perfectly with grilled meats, and even steak.


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Price: $34.99

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Additional Information:

Varietal:

Rhone Blends

Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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.
Specific Appellation:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).