Wine Last Sold on: February 20, 2013
Clif Family Winery
2011 Mendocino Riesling
|Region:||California: Mendocino County|
SUPER QPR ALERT:
At today’s special Wine Spies price, this wine delivers tremendous value - and a drinking experience that exceeds expectations, easily earning it this special QPR (Quality to Price Ratio) Alert.
Mission Codename: Breaking Away
- Agent Red
- After a long absence from our pages, send Agent Red back to Clif Winery in search of their brightly delicious dry Riesling. Secure every last bottle for our eager Operatives.
- Mission Status
- Bruce Regalia
Very highly recommended, today’s 2011 Clif Family Winery Riesling is a crisp, dry and refreshingly delicious treat.
We had assumptions about this wine, before we ever opened the bottle. By reputation, we knew that we would really enjoy the wine - but we were not prepared to be very impressed by it. Our entire tasting panel fell instantly in love with this wine, declaring it to be the best Riesling we have ever featured.
This wine is dry, not syrupy or cloying, with an acidity that is in perfect balance with the delicious fruits. This is a very food friendly, all-seasons wine that can be served with a variety of cuisines.
We recommend pairing with Salad Nicoise, a Greek salad, aged cheeses, or a butternut squash pasta. Medeteranian falafel and hummus plate would also be an excellent companion.
Pale straw yellow with sliver and faintest green highlights. Tall, skinny legs form high on the glass wall before moving slowly downward.
Bright and fresh with apricot and melon rind. As the wine warms just slightly, it opens to reveal a lively citrus zest, pink grapefruit, Valencia orange, vanilla, light peach nectar, all framed by a limestone mineral base.
Granny smith apple, young pear, Meyer lemon, pink grapefruit, lemon verbena and green melon. Again, with everything framed by a lovely minerality.
Most flavors go moderately long. Overall, the finish is clean and very fresh with a lingering pear that goes on far longer than the other flavors. Limestone dryness persists for a long time.
The grapes for this delicious wine were grown north of Sonoma County, along the Russian River and highway 101. The actual AVA is centered between Hopland and Ukiah in the southern third of the county and its grapes are heavily influenced by the climate, which in turn is regulated by the mountain ridges that surround the upper Russian River. The deep alluvial and gravelly loam soils also contribute to the flavor profile of the grapes grown in the region. While Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, and Chardonnay are the primary grapes grown in the region, Cabernet Franc, Barbera, Petite Sirah and many other secondary grapes thrive in the climate.
What the Winery Says
On the nose, aromas of pineapple and honey mingle with hints of grapefruit and honeydew. Fresh flavors of pear, grapefruit and green apple explode on the palate. These intense flavors help lead to a dry and crisp finish. This wine pairs perfectly with mildly spicy, flavorful foods such as Thai, Cuban or Moroccan dishes.
Mendocino County experienced cooler than normal temperatures and some unusual spurts of rain during the 2011 growing season. Despite this, when the time was right, the grapes ripened into beautiful clusters. The fruit for this vintage of the Clif Family Winery Riesling came from Pauli Ranch in Porter Valley, located about 60 miles north of Healdsburg.
This wine was fermented to dryness in stainless steel tanks for 8 months thus helping preserve its lush fruit character and balanced acidity.
About the Winery
Kit Crawford, Owner & Founder
Kit inherited a passion for natural food from her mother and father who instilled in her the value of growing your own food and caring for the natural resources of the land. At Clif Family Farm, Kit has fun creating meals for family and friends from the organic fruits and vegetables that she grows on the Farm. Kit’s interest in wine began when she worked at a popular artisan pasta, wine and cheese shop in San Francisco and expanded when she and Gary purchased a home and farm in the Napa Valley. Kit has a passion for animals and raises chickens and turkeys on the farm. Kit plays a very active role in her local and global community. As a St. Helena High School parent, she is very active in fundraising activities for the local community. As President of Clif Bar Family Foundation, she is responsible for the fiscal oversight of the foundation and its programs.
Gary Erickson, Owner & Founder
Gary has been cooking and baking since high school under the watchful eyes of his mother and grandmother. He began Kali’s Sweets and Savories (named after his grandmother) in 1986 as a small bakery making calzones and gourmet cookies. Kali’s went on to become Clif Bar & Company, the leading maker of organic energy food and drinks. Gary’s love of food and wine began with his cycling trips through Europe. A day of cycling would inevitably end with a long meal and a great bottle of wine. The European’s connection with their food was an inspiration for what would later become Clif Family Winery & Farm. Whether it’s cycling in the French & Italian Alps or a mountain bike ride on his Napa Valley property, good food and wine are always part of the adventure. When he’s not busy running his two companies, Gary can be found at home, cooking eclectic dishes for his family or playing jazz trumpet.