New Sauvignon Blanc on the Block: Cornerstone Cellars

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There is a fondness in our hearts for Cornerstone Cellars.  Last July we crashed a private tasting and dinner with some of our blogger friends at Bistro Jeanty (blame it on our friend Lisa who said, of course, we should come along!)  There we tasted a number of library selections of their fabulous Cabernet Sauvignon, where I swear Joe’s eyes rolled back into his head in one of those “OMG” experiences.  For me, not only were the wines delicious, but I learned to enjoy something I heretofore would not consider eating; oysters.

Up until now, if we wanted to enjoy a bottle of Cornerstone Cellars with food, we would have naturally opted for a big juicy steak.  But with this latest release, we now can enjoy Cornerstone Cellars with the freshest seafood we have in abundance in our own Bay Area of the Texas Gulf coast.

Last night we paired a sample of 2009 Cornerstone Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, with a spicy variation  of Joe’s Seafood Medley Stew*.  I like my food muy caliente! and this wine was perfect to take out a little of the heat from the serrano pepper.  But to enjoy all the subtleties and nuances in this beautiful new Napa white, I was glad to have saved enough to have a glass or two on its own.

2009 Cornerstone Cellars Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc

The first white wine from Cornerstone Cellars, this single vineyard Sauvignon Blanc is the color of pale straw or the delicate liquid of honeysuckle sparkling in the first morning light. Bright and citrusy on the nose, with aromatics of pear, tropical fruits and gooseberry, it’s more Loire Valley Old World than New World pipi du chat. As it breathes and opens up, there’s a warm pleasant nuttiness.

Seductive on the palate, there is a creaminess that I don't usually associate with Sauvignon Blanc.
Once in the mouth, there is a luscious creaminess that I don’t usually associate with Sauvignon Blanc, smooth on the tongue and seductive on the palate, without sacrificing bright citrus, red grapefruit and a zesty acidity.  Balanced and sophisticated, the lingering finish offers firm minerality. Both my mouth and my glass were very sad when I reached over and discovered there was no more in the bottle.

Our 2009 Cornerstone Cellars Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc was harvested in the cool of the morning (pictured above) on the 9th of September. The ripe, beautiful golden fruit was gently pressed to extract only the highest quality free-run juice, maintaining and protecting the natural brilliant aromatic and flavor profile while minimizing phenolic (tannin)interference. An extremely cool, gradual fermentation in stainless steel enhanced the retention of the delicate,lifted aromatic and flavor characteristics of this beautiful vineyard. After over a month of slow, cold fermentation the wine was racked into mature barrels for sur-lie aging that added a richness to the mid-palate and a lingering, complex finish. – Craig Camp, Cornerstone Cellars

This is the first Cornerstone release that Craig has controlled from start to finish, and his experience and dedication shows. Bottled in February of this year, with 13.9% alcohol by volume, Cornerstone Cellars first white is attractively priced at just $25.

Cheers,

The WineWonkette

*Watch for the recipe!