Coast View Vineyard is an exceptional site and one that few wine lovers will ever see. Drive south to the Salinas Valley burg of Chualar, turn left and drive east, over hill and dale, ‘til the road ends at a gate. Thru the gate, over another mile or so of hill and dale to another, locked gate, and you’re still not there! And all this way, unless you know exactly where to look, you haven’t even caught a glimpse of the vineyard. In fact, until you emerge from the dirt track that winds up thru the canyon, pass thru yet another gate, and mount one final ridge, you haven’t a clue what awaits. Maybe this is for the better, because this site is so spectacular. It’s one of those sites that could only be planted by a determined visionary, or a lunatic.
I’m quite sure that owner John Allen is no lunatic, so he must be a visionary and we owe a debt of gratitude to that vision. John is by appearances a calm, thoughtful man, the sort who might regard the challenges of planting and farming such a site as lunacy and move on to flatter ground. But he did not, and again we have a debt of gratitude.
Wonderful black-current and white pepper spice, which are typical characteristics of a Northern Rhone, but not always found in California syrahs are dominant in this current vintage. Layers of blackberries and blueberries are to be found under the obvious cassis flavours as they gracefully float across the palate. This 2010 offering has an elegant mouth-feel in spite of it’s great depth and richness.