Monday, March 5, 2012


Cimarone 3CV Cilla's Blend

The Cimarone 3CV Bank appeared earlier on Now And Zin.  It's a Bordeaux blend with a bit of Syrah.  Now let's try their 3CV Cilla's Blend, which reverses the math and mixes 69% Syrah with Bordeaux varieties: 20% Cabernet Franc, 4% Malbec, 4% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon.  The alcohol content is 14.5% abv and the wine sells for $18.

The source for all this fruit is Cimarone's Three Creek Vineyard in the Happy Canyon AVA of Santa Barbara County, in the warm, eastern clime of the Santa Ynez Valley.  The blend sees 20 months in new and neutral French oak barrels.  Cimarone owner Roger Higgins named the blend after his wife, Priscilla.  He calls it “a wine of beauty and elegance - just like Cilla.”  

Doug Margerum was the winemaker for this effort.  Now, Andrew Murray has come on board and will be Cimarone’s winemaker for future vintages.  Cimarone kindly provided a sample of Cilla's Blend. 

There's a big whiff of alcohol upon opening, but this is not an issue after decanting.  The gorgeous fruit is dark.  Blackberries and blueberries play against an undercurrent of bell pepper, black pepper and sage.  The herbal angle features prominently, but the fruity aspect leads the way.  

The wine sports a great tannic structure and mouth watering acidity.  It's a big wine, with an intense flavor, and herbal notes linger on the finish.  I'd pair this with a rosemary steak.

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