' Spring Summer 2011

May 2011

Dear Friends,

Wine consumers are always interested in knowing when a wine is at optimal “drinking”. When we release COHO wines we believe they are already exhibiting the complex flavors, suppleness, and good structure (tannins and acidity) so as to be enjoyable right away. We do know that our wines will continue to evolve in the bottle as the all the elements therein gently knit together over the next few years, and then depending on storage conditions, should continue to reward the patient consumer for several more years before the essence begins to fade. 

We are pleased to re-release two COHO wines from the 2005 vintage (long, cool growing season, infused deep colors and flavors in the wines) that we think are both showing delicious evolution. They are Michael Black Vineyard Merlot and SummitVine Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon. Last month we received an enthusiastic email from a wine-waiter in Vancouver British Columbia who had purchased the 2005 Michael Black Vineyard Merlot two years earlier in Las Vegas. 

He was writing to tell us “how much” he enjoyed it at a recent dinner. He added that his restaurant has over 400 wines on their list and that he is studying for the prestigious diploma certification of the WSET. “I taste wine on a daily basis… I was compelled to let you know that this was a truly amazing wine”. Last week we enjoyed a bottle of the 2005 SummitVine Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon and had similar enthusiastic comments. If you already have either of these wines in your cellar you won’t be disappointed by pulling one out soon to enjoy. If you are a newer subscriber to our newsletter this is an excellent opportunity to try two delicious wines with a little bit of age on them.

We enjoy hearing from all our customers when they enjoy COHO wines; perhaps none so much as those that buy them for their fine wine shops. In a recent offer to their customers a top Napa Valley wine shop wrote this about the 2008 COHO Headwaters:

Two important words: balance and value. Yes, I realize that was three words. In an era with so many $100+ Cabernet-based red wines from Napa Valley that are big, ripe, thick, and in your face (not that there's anything wrong with that), I always find it refreshing to discover a wine at this price with restraint like this. Think Bordeaux. In a REALLY great vintage. But for just $42. Smell and taste raspberries, along with lots of dark fruits, dusty (Rutherford-ish??) earth, and just enough oak to complement the fruit. Finesse and grace are two (more) words that come to mind with this wine (but don't worry, it doesn't lack power at all). The fruit is just really gorgeous after a nice decant without being flashy. “

Earlier this year one of San Francisco’s most prominent fine wine merchants echoed the above when he wrote:

As dark in terroir notes as it is in fruit profile, this gorgeous if decidedly youthful version of Headwaters captures the quality and personality of previous vintages, but takes a slightly more elegant stance. The fruit is a forthcoming mix of sweet blackberry, blueberry, dark plum and violet, poised above graphite, black tea leaf and forest-floor scents. The mid-palate flavors replicate those aromas almost perfectly and they are just as forthcoming. The wine proves rich in body, yet lean and almost sinewy in texture, as tannic grip and youthful zest direct the dark fruit and earth notes down a streamlined textural path. The finish is lingering and sophisticated and it grows ever more graceful and delicious as the wine airs. If it is already a fine companion for a beef roast, this brilliant wine should greatly repay the patient. Expect it to grow more generous and distinctive over the next five years and beyond.”

A quick word about our 2008 COHO Stanly Ranch Pinot Noir: delicious. This is the first vintage that we made the wine from two newer sections of the vineyard, as the oldest section section was removed. It has been very gratifying to see the reaction from consumers and trade alike. They really like the rich and spicy aromas and complex fruit flavors with earthy tones. Many expect to prefer our 2008 COHO Russian River Valley Pinot Noir because of the bright red fruit character and wonderful crisp acidity, yet they have a hard time deciding which to choose. Luckily our two Pinot Noir’s go with so many different foods and preparations that both wines are finding their way to retail shelves and home cellars around the country.

Last call on two very popular wines: the 2007 COHO SummitVine Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon and 2007 COHO Michael Black Vineyard Merlot. Please note that in fall when we will be releasing the 2008 COHO SummitVine Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon there are 200 fewer cases than the 2007 due to the challenging conditions. And sadly there isn’t any Michael Black Vineyard Merlot in 2008 as the vineyard was devastated that April by frost. So if you are a fan of these wines you may want to lay in a little extra of the wonderful wines from 2007 to keep you cellar well stocked with COHO.

As always we thank you for your wonderful support of COHO.

To sunny days and cool nights

Brooks and Beth Painter           Gary Lipp and Sheila Barry


To unsubscribe, click here.