Flowers and Ledson Top Picks for Millennial Red Wine Tasting

The classic red wine tasting this week was fabulous.  We had some great wines that were donated – and in fact, two of those won top favorites for the night with 47 Millennials present at the tasting and final voting. 

Of course, there are only 4 classic red wines:  pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and syrah.  However, being that we live in California, we had to throw in a Zinfandel.  For the mystery wine of the night, I selected a Malbec from Argentina….because Malbec is so popular now.  The students did a great job of guessing the varietals correctly in the blind tasting.  It may have been because I organized them according to tannin strength, so it wasn’t that difficult to determine – of course, they are also quite brilliant! 

The number one favorite of the night was the 2007 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($55).  This wine had a lovely nose of strawberry and raspberry, but on the palate it had depths of earth and mushroom as well as some dried cherry.  I thought I was in Burgundy!  We all agreed that it would pair beautifully with a mushroom pasta, or Sonoma duck with raspberry sauce.  See for more information on this unique winery with its amazing vineyards near the ocean (see photo).  

The second place favorite of the night was the 2004 Ledson Russian River Zinfandel ($44).  When we first poured this wine, everyone noticed the slight garnet edges and brick-red color, which told us it was older.  However, one whiff of the nose and you knew you were going to taste zin – it opened with a huge jammy presence and lots of spice.  On the palate it was huge, fruity, and hot with a 14.9% finish.  Pairing suggestions were anything on the barbeque and chocolates.  Only available at the enchanting castle winery pictured in the photo (