Saturday, July 7, 2018

Conundrum California Rosé 2017

Conundrum California Rosé 2017

This is the first Rosé wine reviewed in these pages, and my first in several thousand tastings notes published in my wine journal here and on

Conundrum was a project from Chuck Wagner of Caymus legend that has become a major brand with Red, White and this Rose' wine that are sourced from various suppliers throughout California - Napa, Monterey, Santa Barbara, San Benito, Solano and Tulare Counties.

Conundrum was founded in 1989 with Conundrum White, Conundrum Red came along in 2011. Today, Charlie’s grandson, Charlie Wagner II, manages Conundrum and is Winemaker for this wine.

 This Conundrum Rosé is made primarily from Valdigué, a unique and rare grape varietal grown in limited quantities, sourced from near Paso Robles in Central California. The varietal was originally thought to be Gamay until its provenance and pedigree were validated.

This is moderate, light, crisp and refreshing, an ideal summer wine for sunny days on the veranda. Golden, rust-orange, rose colored, light, dry, modest notes of strawberry, hints of pear and tropical fruits with lively acidic finish.

RM 87 points


Mr Riggs McLaren Vale Shiraz 2004

Mr Riggs McLaren Vale Shiraz 2004

Friday night wine and cheese evening in front of a movie, we chose our favorite casual sipping wine, Shiraz, from the cellar. I pulled this Mr Riggs McLaren Vale Shiraz 2004. Linda prepared a selection of artisan cheeses, nuts and fresh pear slices. 

Unlike earlier tasting notes where blueberry was predominant, tonight the black berry lead with accents from plum and more red fruit notes. The plum and red fruit notes were more subdued and less sweet than previous tasting according to my notes, the sweeter blue tones subsiding. Perhaps this is due to bottle or lot variation, or aging deeper into the tasting window, or both. The remainder was consistent with previous tasting notes posted back in 2014. "Dark inky purple colored, full bodied, rich, complex, full forward sweet black and blue berry fruits, accented by a layer of mineral and tones of graphite on a lingering tongue coating full tannin finish."

RM 90 points.