While the region may not be ready to take on the best of Bordeaux, the wines of Mexico’s Baja region are coming into their own. An influx of European vintners looking for affordable vineyard property has sparked the recent growth of an area in which grapes have been cultivated for centuries.
CALIXA 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon A wine with a sturdy, tannic structure, this Cab the sort you can drink now if you like that “chewy” quality or hold it until it mellows a bit. As with many Baja wines, it suffers a bit from a slightly herbaceous, under ripe characteristic.
EL GRAN 1999 Divino (sweet white) A glowing apricot color hints at the thick, honeyed flavors to come. A finishing, herbaceous note gives this sweet nectar contrast and interest.
FLOR DE GUADALUPE 2002 Blanc de Blanc (white blend) This wine’s starring quality it’s mouthfeel – a pleasing, oily weight on the tongue. Somewhat quirky in style, it begins with citrus aromas and finishes with bitter herb.
FLOR DE GUADALUPE 2001 Zinfandel This wine offers some very nice elements, although they never quite come together as a cohesive whole. The aromas of vanilla and raspberry continue to evolve in the mouth to include cherry and caramel flavors and a herbal, tannic finish.
MONTE XANIC 2002 Semillon Sauvignon Blanc One of the most delightful wines of the Guadalupe Valley, this Bordeaux-style blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc offers a tart zing of acidity and a pleasing hint of tropical fruit flavors.
MONTE XANIC 2001 Syrah An unusual rendition of Syrah, neither like the Aussie style or the more earthy French, it seems to embrace elements of both styles. Tart berry flavors intermingle with an earthiness difficult to describe.
SANTO TOMAS 2001 Tempranillo Cabernet Cherry and chocolate are this fun tempranillo blend’s dominant aromas and flavors. With pleasant flavors and nice weight, its one flaw would be it an underlying green, under ripe flavor.
SANTO TOMAS 2002 Tempranillo A gorgeous plum color announces this wine’s intense flavors, including blueberry and plum and an earthy, brambly note.