Seattle Wine Blog

This blog is dedicated to commentary on all aspects of wine, especially short entries to help you find the best wines without the usual hype and spin. These are my frank, independent opinions, usually based on tasting wine at a public event, off the shelf or at the winery. "All creative acts must arise out of a specific soil and flicker with a spirit of place" -D.H. Lawrence

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Note Bene Cellars

Note Bene is certainly no footnote in the world of Washington State wine. Tim Narby is another Boeing Wine Club member who still has a day job at Boeing as a systems engineer. You can see the attention to detail in his enumeration of the sources of his grapes. It turns out that along with Tim and Nancy Sorensen, Tim and Carol are my neighbors. There must be something about our neighborhood that produces a strong interest in wine. Carol by the way is an attorney who very competently makes the business end run. Note Bene is a member of the newly formed SSAW (South Seattle Artisan Wineries) which will be holding two more open houses on DEcember 2nd and December 9th from 1:00 to 5:00.

Tim produces only red wines from great Washington vineyards. There are still some bottles of the 2002 vintage available in addition to the current release of 2003s. Tim produced four different wines in 2002 and 2003. Most of the wines reminded us of mushroom and forest floor. This appealing earthiness seems to be a winemaker signature. Some of the wines had a flat, subdued character. Tim envisions the Miscela as a New World style wine and the Arbinare as an Old World style wine. All of the wines are blended from different vineyards and varietals. The 2002 Syrah, for example is a blend of 75% Syrah, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 3% Cincault, and 2% Counoise - truly a wide ranging Rhone blend.

Among our favorites were the 2003 Syrah, a Bordeaux style blend of Cab Sauv, Merlot, Cab Franc, and Petit Verdot mixed with 83% Syrah, the 2003 Ciel Du Cheval, and the 2002 Miscela. We liked the 2002 Miscela most of all for its cool, subdued, nuanced, balance of fruit and oak. So many blends, so many choices.

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