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  Before leaving for the States, John Holmes worked in the wine sector for about 10 years with his business, Classic Wines. John and his wife Heather moved to the USA early in the millennium and are currently based in Texas, where John works in the oil industry. He still finds time to indulge in his passion for wines, and in this special update report for wine-pages, gives his own, personal views on wines tasted on a wine tourism trip through the Napa Valley and Sonoma regions of California. Part II also includes his favourite wine finds and restaurants.

a tale of two cities, part II

by John W N Holmes, 2011

The Restaurants

Each evening we selected a local restaurant and marked them with as much enthusiasm as the wines. Our marks were based on food (35), ambience (20), wine list (20) and service (25).

Celadon, Napa
(Food 20 Ambience 15 Wine 15 Service 15) Total 65/100. Were kept waiting for a table for 30 minutes despite having a booking. Food was greasy and the steak tough. Avoid unless you are a Michelin tester in which case you get treated well.

Scopa, Healdsburg
(Food 30 Ambience 15 Wine 15 Service 18) Total 78/100. Good food but it was far too crowded and the eating experience was spoiled.

Zin Restaurant in Healdsburg
(Food 30 Ambience 18 Wine List 17 Service 20) Total 85/100. Cosy restaurant serving great food with some interesting pairings.

Dry Creek Kitchen, Healdsburg
(Food 30, ambience 10, wine list 18, service 15) Total 73/100. One of Charlie Palmers restaurants and a very popular location. The food scored highly as did the wine selection but the noise levels were too loud for reasonable conversation and the wine waiter was appalling with an astonishing mix of ignorance and arrogance. We won't be going back there again!

Ravenous, Healdsburg
(Food 30 ambience 17 wine list 15 service 20) Total 82/100. Looks like it is a on old house but produces great food at reasonable prices

Fume, Napa
(Food 30 Ambience 18 wine list 10 service 20) Total 77/100. Went there on off chance was really a pleasant surprise.

Downtown Joe's, Healdsburg
(Food 18 Ambience 15 beer list 20 service 18) Total 71/100. Poor fast food but the attraction is good locally produced beers

Top 10 Red Wines

One wine per producer maximum in each top 10.

red list

Top 10 White/Rose Wines

white list

Top 10 Value Wines (>89 points)

value list

List of wines tasted, prices, scores and notes

Adrian Fog Oppenlander 2007
Price: $75, Score: 91 . Full bodied long finish

Adrian Fog Oppenlander 2008
Price: $75, Score: 90 . Wonderful raspberry and flowery cranberries

Adrian Fog Numbers 2008
Price: $75, Score: 89 . Full fruit, mineral nose of cherries

Antica Chardonnay 2009
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Pears apples mineral finish, tannic

Antica Cabernet Napa Valley 206
Price: $55, Score: 88 . Tannic structure

Antica Cabernet 2007
Price: $55, Score: 88 . Tannins too high for balance

Battaglini Zinfandel Select 2005
Price: $50, Score: 89 . Full bodied zinfandel, lush tannins

Battaglini Chardonnay oaked 2009
Price: $18, Score: 88 . Smoky pears and citrus

Battaglini Zinfandel 2001
Price: $17, Score: 88 . Good nose, short finish

Battaglini Proprietary Reserve 2007
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Chocolate and red fruit on nose, red currants on taste. Tannic though

Battaglini Chardonnay 2009
Price: $18, Score: 87 . Pears and lemons

Battaglini Zinfandel 2008
Price: $27, Score: 87 . Smoky palate, tannic

Battaglini Rosato 2008
Price: $18, Score: 86 . Zinfandel and chardonnay, but why.

Battaglini Petite Syrah 2006
Price: $35, Score: 86 . Rhubarb and chocolate

Battaglini Chardonnay 2003
Price: $22, Score: 85 . Corked

Battaglini Zinfandel 2010
Price: $27, Score: 85 . Red and rustic

Bella Hillside Cuvee 2008
Price: $30, Score: 90 . Black fruit, acidic but opens up with air

Bella duNah vineyard pinot 2008
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Mineral nose, smoky red fruit.

Bella Maple vineyard 2009
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Flint plums, pepper, rounder finish

Bella RRV Pinot Blend 2008
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Difficult nose, tannin structure

Bella Belle canyon 2009
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Red berries but tannins destroys fruit

Bella Big River Petite Syrah 2008
Price: $40, Score: 88 . Deep colour, liquorice nose still too young, keeper? Fruits concealed

Bella Late picked Zinfandel 2009
Price: $25, Score: 88 . Desert wine with tannins!

Ch. Montelena Zinfandel 2003
Price: $40, Score: 91 . Vanilla, berries, blackcurrants, coffee

Ch. Montelena Chardonnay 2007
Price: $55, Score: 90 . Golden colour, melon, citrus.

Ch. Montelena Cabernet sauvignon 2004
Price: $55, Score: 89 . Black currants, mineral balanced

Ch. Montelena Sauvignon Blanc 2009
Price: $25, Score: 88 . Citrus oaky, and warm finish, floral

Darioush Viognier 2008
Price: $39, Score: 90 . Peaches, smooth slight viscous finish Darioush Chardonnay 2008
Price: $43, Score: 89 . Citrus with ripe oak malolactic flavour

Darioush Merlot 2007
Price: $46, Score: 89 . Reasonable merlot Plums and tannins

Darioush Cabernet Franc 2008
Price: $58, Score: 88 . Red cherries, tannic redcurrants

Darioush Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Price: $80, Score: 88 . Solid cab but too pricey

Darioush Syrah Shiraz blend 2006
Price: $68, Score: 88 . Pepper nose, back fruit

Dry Creek Foggy Oaks Chardonnay 2008
Price: $20, Score: 90 . Buttery melons, with Meyer lemon

Dry Creek Beeson Ranch Zinfandel 2007
Price: $34, Score: 90 . Smoky plums, smooth black cherries

Dry Creek Soleil late harvest 2005
Price: $25, Score: 90 . Sauvignon blanc, apricot, lemon balanced

Dry Creek Chenin Blanc 2009
Price: $12, Score: 89 . Great nose, green apples and honey

Dry Creek Musque 2008
Price: $25, Score: 89 . Sweeter Sauvignon blanc, orange undertones

Dry Creek The Mariner 2006
Price: $40, Score: 89 . Bordeaux blend, black currants, short finish

Dry Creek Endeavour cabernet 2005
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Redcurrants, chocolate, raisins. Short finish

Dry Creek Late harvest zinfandel 2006
Price: $30, Score: 89 . Black currants, slight lemon undertone

Dry Creek Malbec 2007
Price: $30, Score: 88 . Dark berries and rhubarb

Dry Creek Spencer Hill Zinfandel 2007
Price: $34, Score: 88 . Lighter nose, red cherries, tannic structure higher

Elizabeth Spencer Went Clone Chardonnay 2008
Price: $45, Score: 91 . Barrel fermented ml pear vanilla toast

Elizabeth Spencer Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
Price: $75, Score: 91 . Natural yeast, cedar wood and black fruit good structure

Elizabeth Spencer Grenache 2007
Price: $30, Score: 89 . Peppercorn black cherries

Elizabeth Spencer Chenin blanc 2009
Price: $25, Score: 89 . Peach pear drops, tangerine

Elizabeth Spencer Petit Syrah 2007
Price: $45, Score: 88 . Earthy flavour tannins, plums deep colour

Elizabeth Spencer Cabernet franc 2007
Price: $55, Score: 88 . Mineral flavour, tannins structured well

Ferrari Carano El Dorado Noir 2009
Price: $30, Score: 92 . Rose petal, floral. Blueberries

Ferrari Carano Emelias cuvee 2008
Price: $36, Score: 91 . Toasty vanilla, long finish. Malolactic with mellow oak

Ferrari Carano Tresor Bordeaux 2007
Price: $58, Score: 91 . Blackcurrant, great taste, solid base for aging

Ferrari Carano Back 40 2006
Price: $85, Score: 90 . Red berries, solid tannins, balanced will last long time

Ferrari Carano Syrah 2007
Price: $36, Score: 89 . Great nose, good balance, solid fruit but short for a Syrah

Fontanella Beckstoffer George III 2008
Price: $95, Score: 92 . Wonderful flavours and structure. Keeper

Fontanella Zinfandel 2009
Price: $36, Score: 92 . Blackberries, Jammy, vanilla

Fontanella Mt Veeder 2008
Price: $52, Score: 90 . Blackberries and cherries

Fontanella Mt Veeder Chardonnay 2009
Price: $30, Score: 89 . Peach, pear ml fermented creamy finish

Foppiano Russian River Pinot 2008
Price: $25, Score: 90 . Strawberries and mineral undertones

Foppiano Petite Syrah 2003
Price: $45, Score: 90 . Herbal flavour

Foppiano Chardonnay 2009
Price: $20, Score: 89 . Green apple oaky flavour, long finish minerality

Foppiano Petite Syrah 2008
Price: $20, Score: 89 . Deep colour, blueberries chocolate, long finish

Foppiano Lot 96 2008
Price: $15, Score: 87 . Lacks nose or taste short

Foppiano Rose 2009
Price: $15, Score: 89 . Strawberry, light summer wine acidity balanced

Forchini Pinot Noir 2007
Price: $32, Score: 91 . Great finish, long.

Forchini Old Vine Zinfandel 2007
Price: $25, Score: 90 . Long finish, good nose, good balance. Berries

Forchini Beau Sierra 2007
Price: $20, Score: 89 . Rich flavour, soft tannins

Forchini Russian River Valley 2009
Price: $18, Score: 88 . Green apple, acidic. Minimal oak

Forchini Tuscan Red 2008
Price: $19, Score: 88 . Dry Italian style, tannic.

Forchini Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Price: $32, Score: 88 . Tough nose, tannic

Forchini Pinot Noir 2008
Price: $34, Score: 85 . Corked

Freeman Keefer Ranch 2008
Price: $46, Score: 92 . Great fruit flavour, strawberries long finish

Freeman Akikos Cuvee 2008
Price: $52, Score: 91 . Mineral Burgundy style, raspberry

Freeman Ryo-fu 2008
Price: $40, Score: 90 . Pears, apples and ml flavours

Freeman Russian River Valley 2008
Price: $41, Score: 90 . Full flavour, raspberry, well balanced

Freeman Sonoma Coast 2008
Price: $41, Score: 89 . Raspberry, long finish

Grgich Hills Cabernet 2005
Price: $70, Score: 89 . Deep Cherry and red fruit, tannins robust

Grgich Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2004
Price: $88, Score: 89 . Lighter nose rounded flavour, black cherries

Grgich Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2003
Price: $105, Score: 89 . Great nose long finish matured and ready

Hall Sauvignon Blanc 2009
Price: $22, Score: 87 . Nose strange sulphur? Bitter tannic taste

Hall Katherine Hall 2007
Price: $80, Score: 87 . Good nose but chewy tannins

Hall Merlot 2006
Price: $28, Score: 85 . Ripe fruit nose, wow tannic overload

Hall Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Price: $44, Score: 85 . High tannins low fruit unbalanced

Hanna Sauvignon blanc 2010
Price: $19, Score: 89 . Pear, lemon, grass and fresh citrus

Hanna Bismark Cabernet 2004
Price: $52, Score: 89 . Cherry and sandalwood

Hanna Bismark Syrah 2005
Price: $48, Score: 89 . Warm taste of plums, chocolate

Hanna Russian River Chardonnay 2009
Price: $26, Score: 88 . Acidic, low fruit nose.

Hanna Russian river pinot 2008
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Caramel, red cherry flavour, lacks depth

Hanna Alexander valley merlot 2006
Price: $32, Score: 88 . Cherry nose,

Hanna Alexander Valley Cabernet 2006
Price: $34, Score: 88 . Toasty blackcurrants lacks taste too tannic

Hanna Bismark Titan 2007
Price: $58, Score: 88 . Closed and reluctant

Hanna Bismark zinfandel 2006
Price: $52, Score: 88 . Spicy nose peppers and red fruit

Hanna Two Ranch Red nv
Price: $27, Score: 86 . So mixed its poor

Heath Dolan Balance 2007
Price: $24, Score: 88 . Blueberry, sharp

Inman Thorn Ridge Ranch 2007
Price: $52, Score: 90 . Beautiful balance, delicate floral, cola, has a higher acid content

Inman OGV 2007
Price: $56, Score: 92 . Strawberries, cola, citrus at end. Long finish. Smooth

Inman Pinot Gris 2009
Price: $25, Score: 89 . Stony, citrus long finish

Inman Chardonnay 2009
Price: $30, Score: 89 . Butter, melon, acidic

Inman Chardonnay 2008
Price: $52, Score: 88 . Lemon, hint of vanilla

Inman RRV 2007
Price: $30, Score: 88 . Closed nose slightly too acidic

J Ratafia
Price: $42, Score: 92 . Nutty flavour, brandy kills nose honey

J Sonoma Coast 2008
Price: $50, Score: 91 . Berry flavours, long finish

J Nicoles vineyard 2007
Price: $50, Score: 90 . Great nose, Jammy taste, redcurrant.

J Russian River Valley 2008
Price: $35, Score: 90 . Bacon fat nose, red fruit, long finish

J 16 barrel Chardonnay 2009
Price: $40, Score: 89 . Apples, vanilla nose

J 16 barrel Pinot Noir 2007
Price: $60, Score: 88 . Low nose, fuller finish

Joseph Swan Stellwagen Zinfandel 2006
Price: $26, Score: 91 . Great fruit, long finish

Joseph Swan Trenton Estate Syrah 2005
Price: $22, Score: 89 . Red currant, citrus finish

Joseph Swan Viognier 2009
Price: $19, Score: 88 . Peach and tangerine, acidic finish

Joseph Swan Chardonnay 2009
Price: $28, Score: 88 . Melon and tangerine

Joseph Swan Trenton View Pinot Noir 2007
Price: $32, Score: 88 . Good nose flowery high tannins on taste

Joseph Swan Mancini Ranch 2006
Price: $26, Score: 88 . Tight nose, high tannins

Keefer Ranch Keefer Ranch 2008
Price: $42, Score: 92 . Toasted vanilla, delicate strawberry

Littorai Savoy Vineyard 2007
Price: $60, Score: 90 . Floral, rhubarb, strawberries

Littorai Thieriot vineyard 2007
Price: $70, Score: 90 . Black tea, orange, strange pinot mix but it works

Littorai The Haven Vineyard 2006
Price: $75, Score: 90 . Blackberries, tannins all in balance

Littorai Ch. Heintz Chardonnay 2008
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Light straw, lemon and apple. Tangerine.

Littorai Les Larmes 2007
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Mineral nose, strawberry, good structure burgundy style

Long Meadow Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Price: $42, Score: 91 . Only 3 per cent cab franc but really comes through, revisited after only 20 mins and had improve

Long Meadow Ranch Sauvignon blanc 2009
Price: $18, Score: 90 . Excellent value

Long Meadow Ranch Ranch house Red 2007
Price: $24, Score: 89 . Good value red, still tannin structure

Long Meadow Ranch Cabernet sauvignon 2005
Price: $42, Score: 89 . Slightly vegetal and tea with bell peppers tobacco

Long Meadow Ranch EJ Church 2006
Price: $85, Score: 88 . Wooden undertones, mineral flavours

Long Meadow Ranch Cabernet sauvignon 2004
Price: $49, Score: 89 . Berries and oak tannins cherry and black fruit

Longboard point break red 2008
Price: $21, Score: 90 . Fruity, mellow tannins, prunes, blackcurrants

Longboard Cabernet Rochiolli 2007
Price: $80, Score: 90 . Good structure, balanced. Blackcurrant

Longboard Russian river 2008
Price: $33, Score: 89 . Red fruit, lighter style, smoky strawberries

Longboard Dakine Syrah 2007
Price: $28, Score: 89 . Acidic, short on fruit

Longboard Chardonnay 2008
Price: $28, Score: 88 . Low nose, acidic. Peachy style

Longboard Sauvignon Blanc 2009
Price: $20, Score: 88 . Apples, yeast, grapefruit, citric

Longboard Dakine Merlot 2008
Price: $27, Score: 88 . Flabby merlot, light on flavour

Longboard Dakine Syrah 2006
Price: $45, Score: 88 . Good nose, short finish

Longboard Maverick Syrah 2006
Price: $40, Score: 88 . Pepper nose, shot finish

Longboard Redgrave cabernet 2006
Price: $50, Score: 88 . Red fruit and mineral taste

MacPhail Vagon Rouge 2009
Price: $59, Score: 94 . Full bodied and robust

MacPhail Homegirl 2009
Price: $29, Score: 94 . Great value wine

MacPhail Ferrington 2009
Price: $49, Score: 94 . Floral nose, spice fruity

MacPhail Gaps crown 2009
Price: $49, Score: 92 . Black tea and cherries

MacPhail Toulouse 2009
Price: $45, Score: 92 . Full fruit, upfront.

MacPhail Rose 2010
Price: $20, Score: 92 . Creamy round rosehip

MacPhail Ray's hill 2009
Price: $49, Score: 91 . Strawberry balanced cherry undertones

MacPhail Sonoma coast 2009
Price: $39, Score: 90 . Cherry flavour, young and fruity balanced

Newton Unfiltered chardonnay 2007
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Butterscotch, hint of acidic orange and spice

Newton Puzzle 2007
Price: $80, Score: 89 . Bordeaux blend, but omg those tannins structure is good

Newton Filtered chardonnay 2009
Price: $25, Score: 88 . Oaky and commercial blend

Newton Unfiltered 2007
Price: $60, Score: 88 . Low fruit on nose, tannins strong and too harsh

Newton Unfiltered Merlot 2006
Price: $60, Score: 87 . Lack of nose, tannins overpower the fruit

Quivira Zinfandel 2008
Price: $20, Score: 88 . Plums, pepper, high tannins

Quivira Syrah 2007
Price: $28, Score: 88 . Good nose, let down by structure

Quivira Sauvignon Blanc 2009
Price: $18, Score: 87 . Bitter undertones

Quivira Flight Zinfandel 2008
Price: $38, Score: 87 . Floral nose, tannic not balanced

Quivira Grenache 2008
Price: $26, Score: 88 .

Quivra Mourvedre 2008
Price: $32, Score: 88 . Blackberry

Rafanelli Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Price: $45, Score: 89 . Good nose, black currants good balance

Ramey RRV Chardonnay 2008
Price: $38, Score: 91 . Smooth, apples and malolactic flavour

Ramey Ritchie Vineyard 2007
Price: $70, Score: 91 . Toffee apples

Ramey Sonoma Coast Syrah 2007
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Floral nose, white pepper.

Ramey Claret 2007
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Excellent structure and good claret style

Ramey Larkmead Cab. Sauvignon 2006
Price: $65, Score: 89 . Cedar smoky, vanilla on finish, long.

Ramey Sonoma Chardonnay 2008
Price: $38, Score: 88 . Melon fruit, acidic long finish

Ramey Napa Valley cabernet 2007
Price: $50, Score: 90 . Smoky black currants, nose is astringent

Ramey Hyde Vineyard 2007
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Vanilla, moon and apples

Ramey Annum Cab Sauvignon 2006
Price: $110, Score: 88 . Mellow nose, tannins overpower the fruit

Ridge Montebello 2007
Price: $140, Score: 92 . Classic Bordeaux style, great balance keeper

Ridge Paso Robles Zinfandel 2008
Price: $30, Score: 90 . Jammy black tea red currants

Ridge Santa Cruz chardonnay 2008
Price: $40, Score: 89 . Lighter lemon driven flavour

Ridge Old school zinfandel 2007
Price: $35, Score: 89 . Sweet and dry at the same time

Ridge Geyserville 2007
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Lively, jamming balanced

Ridge Pagani Zinfandel 2008
Price: $35, Score: 89 . Red currant jam with White pepper

Ridge Buchignani Carignane 2008
Price: $26, Score: 88 . Olive undertones, red berry

Ridge York Creek Zinfandel 2008
Price: $30, Score: 88 . Light style Zin, too tannic

Ridge Lytton Springs Zinfandel 2007
Price: $38, Score: 88 . Red fruit with slight tangerine undertones

Ridge Old School Zinfandel 2007
Price: $40, Score: 88 . High tannic structure

Ridge Syrah Grenache 2006
Price: $28, Score: 89 . Red damsons, long finish with earthy undertones

Rodney Strong Estate pinot 2009
Price: $20, Score: 89 . Smoky, vegetal flavour smooth finish

Rodney strong S Blanc Charlotte home 2009
Price: $14, Score: 88 . Light citrus fruit, acidic

Rodney Strong Chardonnay Chalk Hill 2009
Price: $14, Score: 88 . Buttery flavour melon, slight acidic

Rodney Strong Malbec 2008
Price: $30, Score: 88 . Rubbery smell

Rodney Strong Laden Edgar cabernet 2007
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Chocolate vanilla on nose, black currants Taste disappointing

Rodney strong Symmetry 2007
Price: $55, Score: 88 . Tannic and not balanced, lacks fruit

Rodney Strong Cabernet Brothers ridge 2007
Price: $75, Score: 88 . Chocolate nose, blackberry fruit

Rodney Strong Estate Chardonnay 2008
Price: $35, Score: 87 . Butter, smooth finish reluctant nose

Round Pond Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Price: $50, Score: 92 . Balanced and young, dark cherries

Round Pond Bovet Blanc 2009
Price: $38, Score: 89 . Pineapple and nectarines, creamy finish

Round Pond Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Berries with a hint of clove. Nice balance

Seghesio Cortina Zinfandel 2008
Price: $36, Score: 90 . Peppery fruit nose and finish

Seghesio Barberra 2009
Price: $28, Score: 89 . Sweet berries, long finish

Seghesio San Lorenzo 2006
Price: $60, Score: 89 . Fruity, plums and pepper

Seghesio Petite Syrah San Lorenzo 2007
Price: $45, Score: 89 . Lighter style Syrah, peppery nose

Seghesio Costeira Pinot noir 2009
Price: $42, Score: 88 . Bright Pinot, bit non descriptive,

Seghesio Aglianico 2005
Price: $38, Score: 88 . Earthy, red fruits

Seghesio Dionigia 2005
Price: $40, Score: 85 . Port style, chocolate, strange nose of corn alcohol

Truett Hurst Southdown zinfandel 2009
Price: $29, Score: 91 . Stonking Zin, great open taste, blackberry. Fruit forward

Truett Hurst Burning Man Petite Syrah 2008
Price: $33, Score: 90 . Red currants, tannins, foodie wine

Truett Hurst Boudreaux 2009
Price: $45, Score: 89 . Deep taste, black fruit

Truett Hurst Dark Horse 2009
Price: $40, Score: 89 . Red fruit balanced, good structure slightly sweet

Truett Hurst Red Rooster 2008
Price: $29, Score: 89 . Red fruit, raspberries

Truett Hurst Rattler Rock 2009
Price: $29, Score: 89 . Raspberry, tannic

Truett Hurst Ivywood 2009
Price: $45, Score: 88 . Good fruit, tannins harsh

Vine cliff 16 Rows Cab Sauvignon 2007
Price: $150, Score: 92 . Initially chocolate on nose, tannins are higher than expected but balanced. Long keeper 10 years plus

Vine cliff Prophetess reserve 2008
Price: $60, Score: 91 . Vanilla and sweet tropical fruit. Creamy balanced, classic style, long finish with tangerine

Vine cliff Oakville Est. Cab Sauvignon 2008
Price: $75, Score: 91 . Blackberries, good nose. Long finish. Structured and balanced

Vine Cliff Chardonnay 2007
Price: $39, Score: 88 . Very malolactic, yeasty. Viscous and toasty

WH Smith Maritime Selection 2008
Price: $75, Score: 91 . Deep Cherry flavour, long finish strawberry

WH Smith Piedra Bronze 2006
Price: $42, Score: 91 . Wonderful structure. Deep fruit flavours

WH Smith Naked Pinot 2009
Price: $24, Score: 89 . Light strawberry, tannic

WH Smith Sonoma coast 2008
Price: $30, Score: 89 . Strawberry long finish balanced

WH Smith Marimar 2008
Price: $48, Score: 89 . French style, short finish

WH Smith Little Billy 2009
Price: $22, Score: 88 . Strawberries but weaker flavour

Wilson Molly Petite Syrah 2007
Price: $38, Score: 91 . Red currants, open nose, good balance.

Wilson Carls vineyard, zinfandel 2008
Price: $32, Score: 91 . Chocolate, smooth red fruit

Wilson Dry Creek Zinfandel 2008
Price: $26, Score: 89 . Toasted almonds, red fruit

Wilson Sawyer 2008
Price: $45, Score: 89 . Blackcurrant, full flavour,

Wilson Ellies Vineyard 2007
Price: $35, Score: 88 . Too tannic, unbalanced

Wilson Mollys Zinfandel 2008
Price: $32, Score: 88 . Smooth but lacks depth

Wilson Tori Vineyard Zinfandel 2008
Price: $32, Score: 87 . Low fruit on nose, tannic

go to Part I: Visiting the wineries of Napa and Sonoma


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