Recently, Chris and June Brundrett from William Chris Vineyards thought it would be a fun idea to entice people on Facebook to participate in a game. Whoever guessed the vineyard in which the 2014 Cinsault Rosé fruit came from, would win a complimentary private Rosé tasting for eight people at the winery. Naturally many people jumped in hoping to win the tasting, including myself. After many guesses that were oh so close, Jeff Cope finally picked the correct vineyard and won the private tasting. Since he and Gloria could not make it to the Hill Country anytime soon for the tasting, he offered the winnings to me. Such good friends Jeff and Gloria are!
This past Monday was the day we chose for the tasting, and a total of six people were able to attend, all of which were my Kuhlman Cellars family. The day was gorgeous with the sun shining and temperatures pushing mid-’70s. The crew at William Chris had us seated outside at the tables just off the patio and we began the tasting.
Chris Brundrett guided us through the four wines, and Chef Chozet had prepared a fantastic plate of assorted cheeses, duck, and bread.
The experience itself was superb, as one would expect from William Chris Vineyards, especially when the boss man himself along with Henry Crowson were there to personally discuss the wines. Here is the rundown of the wines he selected for our experience.
- 2013 Sparkling Blanc Du Bois, Méthode Champenoise – Extra Brut
- 2014 Cinsault, Pétillant Naturel
- 2014 Cinsault Rosé
- 2014 Syrah Rosé
All of the wines were wonderfully tasty and well made, and the food was utterly amazing. The Syrah and Cinsault Rosé’s are pretty straightforward. They are both dry Rosé wines and each offer something different. The Cinsault Rosé was by far my favorite of the bunch, offering a delicate mouthfeel, with ample acidity and a very pretty nose.
The Syrah is a bit more in your face, with more of a tart-fruit complexity and a typical meaty back palate, indicative of the Syrah grape. The sparkling Blanc du Bois is a fine example of a traditionally made sparkling wine. The guys in the cellar made this wine using the same tedious techniques used in Champagne, France. If this wine does not encourage you to fall in love with the Blanc du Bois grape, I don’t know what will.
You can see a video that Jeff took of Chris opening a sparkling wine with a wine glass
Finally, the Pétillant Naturel. This is a Sparkling Cinsault that is playfully called “Pet-Nat” in the world of wine. Basically, the wine was bottled during the primary fermentation process and bubbles are produced using the natural sugars from the grapes. No additional sugars were used and this wine is about as raw as it gets, totally unfiltered. In the glass, it visually resembles a strawberry milkshake, and although I personally enjoyed it, the wine is obviously quite different, dare I say a bit weird. With Austin, Texas being so close to the winery, weird isn’t that foreign a word now is it?
A big THANK YOU to Chris Brundrett and the entire brilliant staff at William Chris Vineyards for putting together this very intimate, and extremely enjoyable private tasting. Oh, if any of you were wondering, the correct answer to the Facebook game was Castano Prado Vineyards which Jeff and Gloria toured in 2012.