Lancaster Estate Winery, 2009, Sophia’s Hillside Cuvée, Alexander Valley

We all know 1Stop’s a fan of Lancaster Estate.  And this ’09 Sophia’s is ample justification for that proclivity.  95%Cab, 5% Merlot.  Yes, a young wine, but less than hour of decanting removes any cranky instability, and there isn’t much anyway.  Chocolate, mocha, espresso, sweet leather, butterfly-like tannins forward the intellect of this wine’s elemental arrangement.  Right now, I’m sipping it on its own, to enjoy the Art in the bottle.  And that’s precisely what resulted from this new wine club member release.  [Yes, 1StopWBS’s a cheerful LE Guild Member.]  Love how the nose, after about 40 minutes of air contact, reshapes itself to offer floral notes intermingled with the raspberry, cherry.  Lovely.  Feminine, forwad.  Still sipping.  And only $42 when it’ll be available for pouring in the tasting salon.  More than “consumer-friendly,” a price like that for a ravishing wine like this.

Saved a little for the next night, about 2.5 glasses worth.  The profile was even more engaging that the night prior.  More present were the notes of spicy plum and raspberry, and the chocolate-nudged vanilla.  Lovely tannic frame with each sip.  Definitely have to reorder, keep a few of these on hand at the 1Stop office.  Pairings might range anywhere from blackened chicken, or spiced red sauce pastas, to Sicilian sausage pizza with some kalamata olives.  Versatile vixen, this ’09 cuvée.