As some of you may recall, last month I was chosen to take part in a campaign, in conjunction with Mom Spark Media in which I would be sent a three month Premier Club Membership with The California Wine Club to evaluate the wines sent to me and share my experiences with you. In case you missed last month’s blog and wanted more in depth background information on The California Wine Club and the wines from last month’s shipment, please check out my blog post from last month.
This month’s selections came from Tobin James Cellars. Tobin James Cellars is located in Paso Robles, California and was started by Tobin “Toby” James. Tobin James Cellars is known for their award-winning Zinfandel, however they offer a wide selection of wines from Sauvignon Blanc, to Rosés, and a whole range of red wines. This month, The California Wine Club sent me a 2010 Radiance Chardonnay and a 2008 Titan Hills Vineyards “Fiasco” red blend.
It was a very warm summer afternoon and a chilled white wine was just what I was in the mood for. The Tobin James Cellars 2010 Radiance Chardonnay is 100% Chardonnay and gets its grapes from the Lockwood Vineyard in Monterey County. The Chardonnay sees a slow, cold fermentation in addition to 8% barrel fermentation. The wine pours a nice golden straw color in the glass. There are some faint tropical fruit and citrus aromatics. I didn’t get much on the palate but some muted tropical notes and some citrus and an abrupt finish. For me personally, the wine lacked complexity and was kind of boring. I felt like it was lacking in structure. I was disappointed in this wine and was really looking forward to tasting it based on all the praise I read about it and the awards it won. Definitely not a wine, I would buy. An Internet search shows this wine selling for $16 per bottle on the Tobin James Cellars website and around $15 on various online retailer’s websites.
With one disappointment down, I was kind of hesitant to try the red blend. I was happily surprised with it. The 2008 Titan Hills Vineyards “Fiasco” is red blend composed of 55% Syrah, 25% Zinfandel, and 20% Barbera. The grapes for this wine came from 20 different hillside vineyards. In the glass, the wine pours a very dark garnet color that is just gorgeous. The nose is brimming of dark fruits such as blackberry and boysenberry, along with tobacco, and touches of smoke. On the palate, I got layers of the jammy ripe dark fruits along with dark chocolate, and coffee. The Zinfandel is very prominent with a peppery, spicey long finish. This is a great wine for steak, ribs or burgers off the grill. This is a good one to have around for summer BBQs. It’s a fun wine that will leave you wanting to drink more. This is a wine I would have on hand to take with me to summer BBQs. Upon searching the Internet, I could not find much information on what this wine sells for on its own. A search on wine-searcher showed a couple of vendors selling it for $9.99-$11.99 per bottle. I was unable to find it listed on the winery’s website.
These two wines are two more examples of the types of wines offered in a Premier Club Membership with The California Wine Club. They are generously offering all my readers a special bonus of four bottles of wine, for the price two when they sign up for a new Premier Club Membership. Simply use the code: fab12 at checkout to take advantage of this special offer.
The California Wine Club and co-founder Jonathan Boring can be found on Twitter and Facebook:
Next month, I will be featuring the third and final shipment from The California Wine Club. Until the next time, friends!
*These wines were provided as media samples for review purposes.