Kunde Family Estate Wine: Sustainable, Affordable, Wonderful

Thursday June 7  we–Annie AnyDay, Bachuus Schmacchus, Ima Zinner, Que Syrah Sue, Marshall MoneyBags and I, The Wine Predator— had the pleasure of participating in the KundeLive twitter tasting of three estate wines: Magnolia Lane Sauvignon Blanc, Red Dirt Red, and Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.

This twitter tasting was a lot of fun–and really wild trying to keep up with the live video feed, everyone’s comments, and tweeting and taking notes ourselves! Here’s the link to the video if you want to watch it: http://youtu.be/YNnqbxpfrjs. And yes, they mention the Art Predator aka Wine Predator!

We were impressed with the Kunde Estate Wines to put it lightly. And not just because most of the movie Bottle Shock was filmed on site–including the Paris scenes!

We loved these wines: they were all well structured, sophisticated, and satisfying–and they would pair well with most summer meals you have in mind from salads to pizzas to burgers to to game to steaks.

2011 Magnolia Lane Sauvignon Blanc ($17): light & pleasing like a spring morning

TRY WITH: Goat cheese, bread, olive oil; pesto pizza; oysters

The color is a pale chiffon yellow, bright and clear. We found peaches, almonds, vanilla cream, as well as typical notes of grapefruit and some amazing guava plus nice pine and grass and a citrus finish. A light oak treatment contributes to the complexity and richness in this wine as does a dose of barrel fermented semillon as well as a tad of viognier. It’s sturdy enough for light food; I was sad I didn’t get a chance to pick up some oysters to try with it. (But there’s one glass left so I’ll have to get some! UPDATE: I did! I especially liked it with the Kumamoto oysters!) Screwtop.  13.8% alcohol.

Watch a video about the Magnolia Lane Sauvignon Blanc from Kunde: tcQg8P3mW38

2009 Red Dirt Red ($30): Yogi Bear would love this in his Pic-a-nic Basket!

TRY WITH: Just about anything would be awesome with this wine–pizza, Italian red sauce, bruschetta, ribs, BBQ, grilled salmon, duck…

This blend of 30% Barbera, 26% Petite Sirah, 22% Syrah, 15% Zinfandel, and 7% Sangiovese knocked off our collective socks. We all loved this wine. LOVED. It. Why? Color was rich and red, opaquely purple crimson from the PS with some coral on the edge, nose of cinnamon spice musky musty earthy, fruits of huckleberry marionberry and plum, three kinds of oak treatment for the various varietals which add breadth to the tannin structure and a huskiness and a mellowness to the wine which eliminates the hotness of the substantial 14.8% alcohol; the finish is a subtle butterscotch.

This wine is all about balance, balance, balance and beautiful complexity: bold without being heavy or overwhelming which makes it a great wine for a variety of food pairs from believe it or not Copper River Salmon to mini-grilled gourmet pizzas with sausage and pesto and portabellas to wild game–we’d love to try it with wild duck breasts and a blueberry vermouth sauce.

Did we mention we loved this wine? And we want to to buy more? Soon?

2009 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($45): Let this puppy breathe!

TRY WITH: Steak, tri-tip, bolognese.

No, not puppy BREATH, let this puppy BREATHE! That was the overall opinion on this wine although Annie AnyDay said it was a “Smooth operator”!

The nose has some slight minerality, and the alcohol is a bit overpowering. Black pepper predominates then plum. On the palate, cherry blackberry jam, unsweetened cocoa, toffee rich texture, well integrated tannins, a sophomore yearning to be a senior: a couple of years should improve the finish of this wine. You get all the complexity but it’s not as heavy as what we expect in a cabernet. Well crafted, well structured, well balanced: all this indicates their understanding of what it takes to make a good wine. An obvious pair is with a nice steak. Cellar Mistress aka Grace Hoffman had it with angus steak kabobs and that sounded tasty. This may not be affordable for most people but if it’s in your budget, it will be a feel good and a taste good wine (in a few years or open for a few days) because it’s sustainably estate grown and family crafted. (UPDATE: ooh la la it was luscious with a steak!)

I’d pick up a bottle of this to go with those Father’s Day NY Steaks! Except I’d have to go to the winery in Sonoma County to get it!

Learn more about Kunde wine, their sustainable practices and more.

Watch the video from the Kunde tasting: http://youtu.be/YNnqbxpfrjs

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