1. I was mightly impressed by both the Carlisle and Bedrock whites. For guys who are Zin specialists, they do pretty good w/ whites as well. The Bedrock was one of the best Alsatian-style whites from Calif I've had and I kept staring at the btl because it was the wrong shape.
Back in the old days, there was a lot of SauvignonVert planted in Calif...which made pretty ordinary whites. The DNA typing indicated that most SauvVert was, in fact, Muscadelle de Bordelais...thogh some is also Tocai Friulano. The TTB permits either to be used to label SauvVert. It is presumably what Mike used in his Derivative. This wine is one of the best Semillons out of Calif I can recall. Wonder how it'd hold up against an Ygrec?
2. Chards: These two Chards, which I liked both a lot, were as about as far apart stylisticly as you can get in Calif. The Harrington is a tiny ballet dancer pirouting across the palate in SwanLake....the Chester'sAnvil an Oprah galumping across the palate in combat boots.
3. Barbera: Neither one of the Italian Barberas did much for me...the Vietti being more classic and my favorite of the two. I've tasted a fair number of Barberas from Calif over the yrs. It's a variety that I wish we'd see more of from Calif. There should be a fair amount of old-vine Barbera around and I'd love to see what MikeOfficer or Morgan Twain-Peterson could do with it. I've had some old Martini Barberas that had aged into quite lovely old bones. Some that CaryGott made up at Montevina in those early days were sensational.
I was expecting a bit more of JimClendenan's IlPoderes. They were pretty tannic and acid in their youth (bought thru the WineCask futures program) and I thought they'd go the distance. They were both pretty hard to take in the nose. And they were a bit tired...though they didn't have that dried out/astringent character that old Calif reds can take on.
Forlorn-Hope is, of course, MattRorick's effort w/ grape varieties that are a forlorn hope. The grapes came from the highly-regarded ShakeRidge vnyd of AnnKraemer's up above the town of SutterCreek and south a bit from the ShenandoahVlly proper. Matt released two Barberas, presumably made the same way, but one w/ no SO2 added. The SanSoufre version, at opening, seemed just a bit brighter & livelier. After two hours later, I couldn't really tell a nickel's worth of difference. Calif Barberas tend to be on the rich/lush side, not too far from Calif Zins in style. Matt's was definitely more along the style of a good Barbera d'Asti...very bright & lively and with a laser-sharp acidity. It will be interesting to contrast these two wines w/ some age