Friday, April 29, 2011

Herman Story -- hot winery and small production

Currently in stock at Forsyth - but you can order them online for pickup at any of our stores - click here

"Readers looking for super-concentrated, extroverted, exuberant, powerhouse wines from California's Central Coast need look no further than the Herman Story estate. For those who love the wild side of Rhone varietals pushed to the limit (but not over), these are highly recommended. Moreover, prices are exceptionally fair for this level of quality." -- Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate

Last year the 2008s all scored between 90-95 points from Robert Parker and 93-95 from The Wine Spectator.  The 2009s are not rated yet, but don't wait because they will be gone.

2009 Herman Story White Hawk Syrah...$39.99
211 cases made
Vineyard: White Hawk 98% Syrah, 2% Viognier
More than any other vineyard I work with, White Hawk Vineyard behaves like a good dance partner; moving expertly to the motions of each vintage. If the 2008 was a broad-shouldered, buxom cowgirl, the 2009 is her Manhattan counterpart: sleek, elegant and worldly. A perfumed nose of rich raspberry, fresh picked rose and subtle violet with rural undernotes of crisp bacon, clove oil and black pepper. The 2009 White Hawk shows an earthy, athletic palate with grilled game, kirsch and maduro cigar wrapper. Full bodied tannins linger throughout the evening, leaving you begging for the next dance. (DRINK NOW: 2+ hour decant, CELLAR 8+ years)

2009 Herman Story Tomboy Viognier/Roussanne....$37.99
250 cases made
83% Viognier, 17% Roussanne
Vineyards: Larner, White Hawk, Denner & James Berry
I appreciate a sturdy woman, a lady who the wind isn’t gonna blow over. I also enjoy a woman with many layers; someone I need to take my time on to get to know properly. Once again, Tomboy floats my boat. The 2009 vintage is a sturdy showing, indeed; a white wine that probably makes more sense to a red wine drinker than most red wines do. And multi-faceted is an understatement. This wine is so densely layered, it’s more likely to be recognized by MENSA than I ever am. It smells like crushed honeysuckle, wool shirts, lime zest, coconut, butterscotch, wood fire and pain perdue. It tastes like all of those things plus lychee, nectarine, white tea, thyme, orange marmalade and saltwater taffy. Actually, I stopped writing down what this wine tastes and smells like after an hour because my hand got tired. But mostly because I wanted to give it my full attention. (DRINK NOW: close to room temperature – 15 minute decant, CELLAR: 2-4 years)

2009 Herman Story Nuts & Bolts Syrah....$39.99
710 cases made
Vineyards: Shadow Canyon, Luna Matta, Terra Bella, White Hawk & Larner
Single vineyard wines are sort of like kids on the Ivy League track; you just have to make sure that you don’t do anything that throws them off and you’ll see them succeed. Blends like Nuts & Bolts are a bit more like me, it takes some well timed advice, a bit of hand wringing and a lot of love to see them come into their own; but when they do they always take the limelight. The 2009 Nuts & Bolts is the best testament to my parenting skills that I can imagine (ladies please don’t get any ideas.) A nose rich with red currant preserves, kirsch, nutmeg and a hint of coriander opens into a palate bursting with ripe plum, open pit bar-b-que and persistent, dusty tannins. (DRINK NOW: 45 minute decant, CELLAR: 8 + years)

2009 Herman Story On the Road Grenache....$39.99
360 cases made
Vineyards: Larner, Santa Barbara Highlands & Hymn
Driving up and down the Central Coast throughout harvest has it’s perks, sure I now know more places to find legit burritos than I ever thought possible, but aside from that I get to spend countless hours mulling over the best way to blend my Grenache lots. The 2009 On the Road may be the best Grenache party I’ve ever curated. The wine smells a like a sensuous, low-lit evening: chocolate creme pie, spiced raspberry compote, cinnamon stick, leather and velour pillows. The palate carries the evening into the night and the next morning with dark coffee covered cherries, sweet tobacco, strawberry rhubarb waffles, blueberries and crisp bacon. (DRINK NOW: 1 hour decant, CELLAR: 6-10 years)

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