Bonterra Vineyards Roussanne Organically Grown 2005

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This recommendation is as much for the program as it is for the current release. Reason is, the first California Roussanne I had was from Bonterra,... Read more

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External Reviews for Bonterra Vineyards Roussanne Organically Grown

External Review
Source: Appellation America
10/16/2008

This recommendation is as much for the program as it is for the current release. Reason is, the first California Roussanne I had was from Bonterra, back in the transition period before they went officially organic and then biodynamic with their viticulture. I got to taste vintages on either side of the divide, and the difference was remarkable. Not only that, you could look out the window and see why. It was November 30th, and all the Sonoma and Mendocino vineyards I had driven past to get to Bonterra that day were brown and dead-looking: the vines had dropped their leaves for the winter and the ground under them had been treated with pesticides so nothing was growing there either. But at Bonterra, the vines still had leaves, the leaves still had color, the birds and bees were still flitting about, and the ground was green with cover crops, pepper plants, lavenders, and more. It was like going back into summer when every other vineyard was diving into winter. Real eye-opener, literally and figuratively.So let’s consider the 2005 Bonterra Roussanne. Aromatically, Roussanne is in a class by itself. No other grape gives you the same nutty/honey effect with lilac and paperwhite and narcissus. It’s one of the most distinctive aroma sets in wine. In this blind tasting, the fruit was not as fully dimensional on my palate as I remember from past vintages, though the flavor is abundant, the texture is nice, and the weight and body are good. So here’s the recommendation: get some of this, get it to about 55 degrees (above refrigerator temperature), and then play with it. Sip, sniff, eat a cracker or some unsalted nuts. Get to know Roussanne that has not been adulterated by chemicals in the vineyard or the winery. It’s an education you’ll enjoy. (Not only that, when you order Roussanne and get some viscous, oaky white that you can’t tell from Chardonnay, you’ll be supremely confident in sending it back and asking for something else.)


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