You always remember your first time. For me the first time I visited Mendocino County I had the pleasure of not only visiting Paul Dolan’s vineyards but spending some time with Paul as well. His reputation as a leader in Organic and Biodynamic practices precedes him and well it should. He’s done as much to champion these movements in California as anyone. The results speak for themselves with his wines. Today I’ll be looking at the current release of Sauvignon Blanc. The Paul Dolan Vineyards 2009 Sauvignon Blanc was produced exclusively using certified organically grown grapes. All of the fruit for this wine was sourced in Mendocino County. Both fermentation and aging of this wine took place in stainless steel. Just over 4,000 cases of this Sauvignon Blanc were bottled in the 2009 vintage. It has a suggested retail price of $17.99.
Aromas of lemon zest and grapefruit lead the nose. Hints of vanilla bean and green grass chip in to lesser but still significant degrees. All of those characteristics reverberate on the palate which is particularly loaded with both citrus and tropical fruit flavors. A hint of orange water emerges at the back of the palate and leads to the finish which shows off nice spice characteristics; white pepper and vanilla bean in particular. This wine is clean and crisp with bright, refreshing acidity playing a vital role.
Taken as a whole the Paul Dolan Vineyards wines express a purity of fruit that’s likely to knock your socks off with freshness and vitality, particularly if you haven’t had them yet. This Sauvignon Blanc, for my money, is the best one coming out of Mendocino County. It expresses its sense of place beautifully, tastes as it should like Sauvignon Blanc, and it’s a very good value. With 4,000 cases in the marketplace you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. I suggest you get some and experience the promise of Organic Mendocino fruit for yourself.