HE and SHE both say: This is a very special wine that we share with you. Melville Winery is a favorite spot of ours. Melville Winery is located in the Santa Rita Hills of Lompoc, California, in the Santa Ynez Valley. Got all that? Hills, Valley, Saints, California, Mediterranean architecture . . . traces of heaven, right? We’ve had a bottle of 2005 Melville every August for the last three years and every year it gets better. Find some if you can.
Do we have an ulterior motive? Indeed we do. We are sharing our joy with you. 2005 Melville wines were in the oak barrels Aug. 2006 when we celebrated our marriage with a wedding reception in the barrel room at Melville Winery. There were only 30 of us, but it felt like 300 and there was a ton of love, joy, dancing, good karma and laughter seeping into the barrels and “terroir” of Melville that day. When the 2005 wines were released, we bought a case — half pinot noir, half syrah — with the idea that we’d drink a bottle each year to celebrate our anniversary. When we decided we wanted to be married longer than 12 years, we went shopping for more. Uh, oh.
Now, back to the 2005 Melville Estate Pinot Noir, Verna’s
SHE drank her 2005 Melville Pinot with perfectly grilled lamb chops (medium rare, thank you), mashed potatoes, roasted heirloom tomatoes with eggplant, and Parma ham with melon and figs. HE drank his 2005 Melville Pinot with that same tremendous Parma ham, melon and fig appetizer — a pairing made in heaven — and veal saltimbocca topped with more Parma ham. Simply delicious.
HE SAYS: This wine was unbelievably good. From the very first smell to the glory of that first taste, all the way to the last swallow, this wine was outstanding. Beautiful color, with a lovely rose petal and violet scented nose, with a touch of mustiness. In the mouth, a most delicious bowl of strawberries and cherries. Very soft and well balanced, a real treat. We tasted this wine at Melville in May ’07 and my notes say “tasty, nice body, good balance” — a respectable 14+ in my ratings. No doubt the occasion and symbolism of the wine played a part, but this wine has grown up and developed into a seriously terrific wine. It was truly one of the finest California or Oregon pinot noirs I have ever tasted. It could be peaking now — gonna have to wait another year and see. A thundering 18+!
SHE SAYS: Wow. An 18+ Melville, are you reading? I hope he describes me like that someday. So to this lovely Pinot Noir, I say, “Mmmmmm. You are so sexy the way you sneak in and light my fire. Thank you!”
HE SAYS: One more note on Melville wines — I generally prefer their main line from Verna’s for pinot and syrah versus their Santa Rita Hills and other single vineyard designations. I find the fruit more forward and approachable in the Verna’s, which comes from their ranch in Los Alamos. Regardless, they consistently make very nice wines and their winery setting is just gorgeous. And if you’re in the neighborhood, be sure to check out Babcock right next door. SHE SAYS: That is way too much information for me. I just drink it.
HE and SHE both say: If you can find any 2005 Melville wines that were in the barrels that summer, we say pay whatever they want, just buy it!