TN: 2005 Alban Vineyards Grenache Alban Estate Vineyard

  • 2005 Alban Vineyards Grenache Alban Estate Vineyard - USA, California, Central Coast, Edna Valley (6/20/2009)
    Darned fun in a guilty pleasure way. Cracked pepper and ripe plums on the nose. Juicy, powerful, slightly confected, nicely structured yet so supple and plush. Surprisingly fresh given the sheer heft and intensity of the wine. (95 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

thanks for the post eric
i really love the Alban wines, i try to carry a few back to London from LA when i visit. just finished my 2001 Pandora and it was great
i took the '05 Reva to a California BYO recently, it was very young but very good

  • 2005 Alban Vineyards Syrah Reva Alban Estate Vineyard - USA, California, Central Coast, Edna Valley (5/28/2009)
    California BYO @ Texture (London): California BYO @ Texture- this was a dark purple color and looked thick. smelled of blueberries and currants and some smoke. in the mouth this is a heavyweight, it is bursting with creamy purple fruits ad some cassis. there is a touch of heat and pepper but it is really more about the delicious mouthful of ripe cali fruit. very new style rhone but a very enjoyable glass of wine. (94 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

Ken, it sounds like we feel similarly. It is sort of odd really to bounce from a Chave to an Alban–but both are pretty fantastic expressions of Rhone varieties on very opposite ends of the spectrum. What I love about the Alban Syrah how especially meaty and bloody and tarry these can be while still being quite ripe and rich.

gotta drink it all to know what you like, chave and alban both make great wine
i think you and i like the same thing about the Alban, the balance, which is not an easy thing with such a big fruity wine, but they do it
fingers crossed it holds in the years to come

Ken, the Reva seems to like a few years to settle. I found the 2004 a bit OTT on release but 2 years later it is in a nice groove. (The 2003 has been KILLER from day 1, probably my favorite Reva). I have a few of the higher-end bottlings I am trying to let settle for a few years.

i really like the Pandora but hard to find over here and cant carry back to many Cali wines as the bottles are very heavy

  • 2001 Alban Vineyards Pandora - USA, California, Central Coast, Edna Valley (11/5/2008)
    Drunk at Lunch at the Ledbury-Decanted 2+ hours, dark purple color, spicy casis high acidty, spicy black dark fruits in the mouth, well balanced and the fruit and tanin are well integrated, very long finish, still very primary but coming along nicely (92 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

Eric, thanks for the note. Makes me happy to have four bottles.

Even though my heart lies in Burgundy, I do enjoy John’s wines. In fact, after reading your description, I found myself wishing I had one of these tonight with hamburgers off the grill. Nice read!

Yeah this would be nice with burgers. Mine last night was with a sort of Vietnamese seared steak salad I made up. (Thai, mint, bit of heirloom Romaine, daikon, red cabbage, napa cabbage, snap peas, heirloom baby carrots, some bean threads, steak dosed heavily with white pepper and salt grilled hot and rare, sliced super thin tossed with juice in the salad and then dressed with lime, lime zet, unrefined peanut oil, rice vinegar and a hint of miso. Fish sauce would have been nice but in Kashrut you are not supposed to mix meat and fish so I held off). The spicy, plummy wine did surprisingly well with the zippy, crunchy salad.

I actually opened one of these last night and your description is spot on. I found it perhaps a bit on the overripe side but it was balanced and structured with a touch of heat on the finish. There was an earthy dark quality that you alluded to that I also enjoyed. I have some left in the fridge so will report back.

thanks for the note eric, sounds great. im hosting a grenache tasting tomorrow night…hope someone brings alban!

my only experience with alban is his viognier which was very tasty

Sounds great Eric. I have ONE bottle (all I was allocated) in my cellar and am also letting it settle a few years.

Tried this along with the 04 side by side last year at Boulevard Restaurant in SF with John Lancaster, the somm there (and owner of Skylark wines ta boot). I enjoyed it a bit more than the 04, but felt it needed a good couple of years for the oak to integrate and take more of a back seat . . .

Thanks for sharing!