Saturday, November 8, 2014

PANNING FOR GOLD - Ironstone Vineyards

Ironstone Vineyards

Who knew when my brother Bob suggested we all meet in Angel's Camp, California, Gold Rush country, that we'd find liquid gold?  Well, Bob did even if I didn't.  Mark Twain might have lived here in his one room cabin and panned for the elusive nugget with the miners back in the day...

...but today's gold is definitely the wine made from the region's thriving vineyards. 

Ironstone is no exception. But Ironstone offers more than good wine.... it's a cornucopia of caves...

Bob & Nguyen exploring the caves

... waterfalls...

... wooded paths...

... a museum...

... a gift shop, a terrific deli, and one of the largest gold nuggets on the planet. This is what a 44-pound gold nugget looks like!

It's almost as tall as Nguyen
Put in a cot, throw in a pillow and you could live there.

And just below the tasting room is the Alhambra "Robert Morton" pipe organ saved from the Sacramento famed Alhambra Theatre before it was demolished.

Just sit down...

... turn it on and be engulfed in the "Phantom of the Opera."

To reach Ironstone, you drive past the vineyard...

 ...and up to the beautiful stone building that houses the tasting room/museum/gift shop/deli. 

 Inside, you find yourself in a vast room with a tasting bar, wine displays, stone fireplace and that deli.

 Richard, Bob, Nguyen and I would explore the rest of the property later -- but first it was time to do a little wine tasting.

Kathy was our barista...

...and the first pour of our flight was the 2011 Elevation White ($17.85), a viognier blend that had a hint of nutmeg.  Loved it.

The 2013 Chardonnay ($11.99) was a tarty apple and pear wine with vanilla and oak notes.  Lovely.

Next was the 2013 Obsession "Symphony," a blend of muscat and grenache grapes that would pair well with Thai or Indian food.

On to the reds:  The 2013 Cabernet Franc ($11.99)  had rich berry flavors, coupled with a toasty vanilla 'nose.'  Sound good?  It was.

The 2013 Old Vine Zinfandel ($11.99) is a wine with subtle pepper flavors mingled with hints of ripe red fruit.  Rich and delicious.

2010 Elevation Red ($23.00) is a medium bodied wine, with spice and clove aromas and tastes of chocolate and vanilla.  This Elevation was a revelation.

Next was the 2011 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($25.00) with dark blackberry and plum flavors and scents of cassis, black currents and vanilla beans.  My nose and tongue were both happy.

My favorite wine of the flight was the 2010 Reserve Deaver Old Wine Zinfandel ($28.00) which had all the aromas and flavors of a fine zin... berries, cherries and chocolate.  Delicious.

If you find yourself in the Sierra Foothills, venture over to Ironstone in the town of Murphys.  Enjoy the museum, walk the paths, explore the caves, have lunch - but most of all - try the wine.  Moderately priced with expensive 'tastes' this is one time you'll get champagne taste on a beer pocketbook.


Ironstone Vineyards
3675 Six Mile Road
Murphys, California

1 comment:

Sandra Lewin said...

Great pictures. you are looking good "cuz"! Actually you all do. I am not a wine drinker, I do drink it and enjoy, but know little about what I am imbibing. You do a good job of teaching. Thanks, Sandra