For grandson Reid's birthday, son Ryan served two spectacular giant red wines, Mollydooker Carnival of Love Shiraz and a Cliff Lede Rock Block Series, Scarlet Love. It was a family gathering of cousins and in-laws, with pizza, DQ Ice Cream cake and snacks on a perfect summer day on the deck and with a bounce house and yard games.
The Mollydooker brand of wines is named for the affectionate Aussie term for 'Left-Hander' - because Sarah Marquis, the powerhouse winemaker based in McLaren Vale Australia, is a lefty!
Prior to Mollydooker, Sarah was involved in various Robert Parker high-scoring wineries including Fox Creek, Henry's Drive, Parson's Flat, Shirvington and her own label with former husband and distributor partner, Marquis Phillips.
The whimsical colorful labels are cartoonish with the premium labels styled as circus posters. This is the premium estate bottled Shiraz.
Mollydooker Carnival Of Love Shiraz 2013
This release was awarded 95 Points by The Wine Advocate and 94 Points by Wine Spectator.
This is produced of 100% Shiraz from a single vineyard, the 2013 Carnival of Love was aged in American oak, 97% new.
|Cliff Lede Estate, Winery (right) and Wine House (left)|
as seen from hillside Poetry Inn and surrounding vineyard
The name of this blend is derived from Grateful Dead’s "Scarlet Begonias" from the Twin Peaks vineyard and from Cream’s "Sunshine of Your Love" in the flagship steep hillside Poetry vineyard above the Silverado Trail overlooking the estate across the valley.
We've visited the estate several times and our tastings there have been highlights of several of our Napa Valley trips.
Lede describes this vineyard sources for this wine, "The Cabernet Sauvignon in “Sunshine of Your Love” is planted in shallow volcanic soil and farmed to low yields, contributing concentration and classic Stags Leap character to the backbone of the blend. “Scarlet Begonias” is a small block of Petit Verdot that provides depth, structure, and a luxurious perfume of floral and spice notes."
Ryan gets this label through his Cliff Lede club allocations. This ultra-premium label got 97 points from Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 92 points from Vinous.
This is a blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
Dark blackish inky purple, full bodied, intense, concentrated, complex yet nicely balanced, elegant, smooth and polished black and blue fruits are accented by graphite, licorice, smoke, leather with a long silky smooth tannin laced finish.