Monday, June 2, 2014

Cimarone Wines' 3CV Bank 2012 Red Blend

Cimarone Wines and Three Creek Vineyard were the 2001 “retirement project” of Roger and Priscilla Higgins.  Those who know how difficult it is to grow grapes and make great wine may pause here for a little chortling and snickering.  If there’s a rocking chair on the premises, it’s just for photo opportunities.

The vineyard is in the recently named AVA called Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara County, located in the warm east end of the Santa Ynez Valley.  Both the vineyard and the winery facility were sold in 2012, but Mr. and Mrs. Higgins kept the right to use the fruit in their Cimarone and 3CV wines.  The wines are now produced by renowned winemaker Andrew Murray at his Los Olivos winery.

Murray’s Twitter handle used to be “@gotrhones” but he has since broadened his scope with the more official sounding name of @AMVwine.

The 3CV Bank 2012 is basically a blend of Bordeaux grapes which are giving a buddy from the Rh├┤ne a ride to the Valley.  It’s a party, and all grapes are invited - 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Cabernet Franc, 20% Malbec, 12% Petit Verdot, 12% Merlot and 6% Syrah is the varietal makeup.  The wine retails for $20 and has an alcohol content of 14.3% abv.

Bank opens the tiller with a great, dark fruit nose that is rich and dark.  Cassis and hints of leather, pepper and anise create the olfactory fireworks, while the palate is also extremely dark and fruity.  More savory notes peek through here - spices and tobacco notably - but the blackberry and currant fruit flavors are fully in charge.  The wine has a great mouthfeel, with enough tannins to tame a bite of steak, but not enough to pick your teeth with afterward.


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