Monday, July 27, 2009

All Roads Lead to Rome

I want to thank Alison Frichtl for hosting our wine tasting group's recent white Burgundy tasting. I usually do not make mention of other wines in our blog but it was unanimous that out of ten wines from the region, the Puligny-Montrachet La Garenne Etienne Sauzet 2005 was the true star. It stood out even among the other Puligny-Montrachet from the same producer. It had a floral nose with slight oak in the backround. The palate was full with lots of acid and succulence and the wine seemed to go down in waves with an extremely long glycerol filled finish. Whew! I am still thinking about it now.

These are the types of wines that bore into my brain. The last one to do this (aside from VELLUM) was a 2002 Quintessence de Corton-Charlemagne... with hints of crushed aspirin and long, long finish.

Since I dropped VELLUM nicely into that review:); it has recently come to my attention that I have never taken the time to assess what our wine really is to me personally. Nobody until now has asked what I think it tastes like and I cannot believe it has taken this long. I think it takes the right person to ask the right question!

Anyway, in an email to her I wrote this:

"The wine is St-Julien on the nose with fresh but austere red fruit, bramble, espresso grounds (or graphite) and cardamom. It has restrained French oak left to linger as a remote afterthought. The aromas evolve slowly and they make me think about what I am about to taste. The palate ties in with the nose and it is a transition without any surprises. I taste what I smell and the combination is heady. The acid frames the entire mouth and lets the powdery tannins fall gently front to back. The wine is seamless and perfectly balanced from tip to tail; integrating the tannin, acid and alcohol. The length on the finish is very long and comes in waves (going on three minutes now). The wine resembles some of the top estates of St-Julien."

It felt good to finally let it all out!...

These musings are not as easy to express as they seem. To look at one's creation is to critique oneself and this exercise certainly must be borne with a measured dose of humility! I suppose I only needed some coercion. Again, I want to thank the intriguing fan (from Alabama) who had the wherewithal to ask a simple but well put and well timed question.

Those are always the best.

-Karl Lehmann

As an aside, and to make the title of this BLOG relevant... a simple question that I have been longing to know the answer to: Is there any record that the Romans conducted wine tastings the way we do today?

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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

VELLUM Tasting July 26th at Wine Styles in Vacaville, CA

We are thrilled to announce that VELLUM will soon be featured at WineStyles in Vacaville, CA!!

On Sunday, July 26th from 5pm-7pm please join us at WineStyles to celebrate the introduction of the 2007 VELLUM Cabernet Sauvignon. All are welcome to attend - to hear winemaking notes from VELLUM Winemaker Karl Lehmann and to enjoy live music with Gianna Biagi.

WineStyles is a fantastic wine bar and retail shop with a great location in historic downtown Vacaville. Here is the address:

VELLUM at WineStyles
Sunday, July 26th from 5pm-7pm
11-B Town Square Place
Vacaville, CA 95688
Phone: 707-447-9463

We look forward to seeing you there!

- Jeff Mathy

ps. The photo above was taken by VELLUM fan Peichi Waite (C)2009

Wine and Cigars

In May we debuted our 2007 VELLUM Cabernet Sauvignon at release parties around California to great success. However, on June 24th for the first time VELLUM's 2007 vintage was presented in Napa at BakerStreet Downtown.

We were fortunate enough to have our wine paired with the world renowned cigar brand C.A.O. International. So, as an unapologetic cigar lover it was my honor to have VELLUM match so well with my long time favorite CAO Brazillia label.

It was a classic pairing brought together by Brenda Roberts, the proprietor of BakerStreet Downtown. I want thank her for this enriching experience and I was very pleased to see how well the Napa Valley community received our first wine.

I also want to extend a special thanks to Frank Kapp and Ed Trevino from C.A.O. International. Their insight, understanding and shared appreciation for the craftsmanship of cigars and wine made for a complete evening.

And...Thanks again to all in attendance - we hope to see you again at future events!

- Karl Lehmann