Monday, November 7, 2016

Wine Your Own Beeswax

The wines of Bonny Doon Vineyards are all about complexity. They are all about savory. Sometimes, they’re all about beeswax.

The 2013 Le Cigare Blanc is composed of 57% Grenache Blanc grapes, 27% Roussanne and 16% Picpoul Blanc. Those Rhônish varieties are grown with organic care in the Beeswax Vineyard of Monterey County's Arroyo Seco appellation. Three varieties, a single vineyard.

Bonny Doon chief Randall Grahm says the '13 vintage of the pale analog of his amazing Le Cigare Volant is richer than the "lean, taut '11" but has the hallmark complexity we've come to expect in his wines. It rides in at 14.5% abv and retails for $28. Grahm made 1,757 cases

The wine is a pale, greenish-gold in the glass. It smells, notably, of beeswax - not surprising given that the grapes were grown in the namesake vineyard. A light lanolin creeps over with a bit of yellow melon and a chalk minerality. The nose is elegant, not forceful. On the palate, its savory aspect is apparent, with waxy and nutty flavors presiding over the citrus and minerals. The mouthfeel is full and the acidity is just enough. Year after year, it’s one of the best white wines I taste.