2006 Candells Sparkling Brut Rosé
California: Russian River Valley
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A very impressive offering that came about as a result of an equally impressive collaboration, today’s 2006 Candells Sparkling Rosé is a must-have for any higher-end sparkling wine fan.
We were very happy when we were given access to this very highly recommended, delightful sparkling wine made by Virginia Marie Lambrix at Iron Horse Winery in the Green Valley sub-appellation of the Russian River Valley.
This wine is complex and dark but very balanced and very enjoyable to all of the senses. Where some darker sparkling wines tend to be overly flavorful, this wine is easy drinking, elegant and very approachable.
Enjoyable with lighter foods, we also advise that you partake of this wine all on its own at the end of a rich meal.
Dark, deep and rich with rusted orange hues and glinting edges of strawberry. A fine, constant rush of tiny bubble race through the wine.
Subtle and fresh, with dark wild strawberry, fresh rhubarb stalk, and red currant. Beneath these we find clay soil and a subtle hint of dried anise.
Refined and elegant, with all-around-the-palate flavors of white cherry, young wild strawberry and red currant.
Darker fruits tail off quickly, leading to a very long citrus, white raspberry and mineral finish that lasts a very long time. This acidity at the end gives the wine a lovely lift.
Caviar blini with sour cream, smoked salmon with dill creme fraiche, or oysters on the half shell.
What the Winery Says
Produced from California’s premier cool climate appellation, the Russian River Valley, Candell’s is celebration in a bottle. Congratulations, you got the job! It’s a boy! Happy Anniversary! Every special occasion calls for Candells.
- Virginia Marie Lambrix
- Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California
About the Winery
Early in winemaker Virginia Marie Lambrix’s career, the Russian River Valley served as her laboratory for developing an interest in the fruit and farming there. While winemaker and viticulture specialist for Truett Hurst in the Dry Creek Valley, Virginia expressed her fascination by making a little Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. The label distinction was made by using her initials, VML. After convincing one of her partners, Phil Hurst, to take a walk through some of the Russian River Valley vineyards she was familiar with, the notion of getting more deeply entrenched in the region came to pass.
As fate would have it, Bill Hambrecht, longtime Russian River Valley grape grower and vintner, was looking to breathe new energy into both his vineyards and winery in the Middle Reach of the Russian River Valley. The joining the team at Truett Hurst and these stellar properties was the foundation of VML Winery in the spring of 2011.
VML’s Single Vineyard series wines are meant to capture the imagination by highlighting unique and beautiful pieces of terroir within the Russian River Valley. Virginia explains that the beauty of wines from the Russian River Valley is how they reflect the specific vineyard sites. The winemaker should stay out of the way of what the terroir expresses – guiding the fruit and resisting the temptation to manipulate the wines. The wines at VML let the vineyard sources speak for themselves. Despite the trend to tone down Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs, a force of nature in our vineyards delivers wines that are big, bold, and full flavored.
Winemaker Virginia Marie Lambrix
While on vacation in South Africa, Virginia Lambrix tasted her first “serious wine.” Captured always by a love of nature and the out-of-doors, she determined it was time to learn about the art of the vineyard – viticulture. Within a year, Virginia was studying horticulture and agronomy in the master’s program at the University of California, Davis, with an emphasis on viticulture and enology. Upon graduation, she worked at the Hendry Ranch in Napa, and for Concha y Toro in Chile.
In 2004, Virginia visited a biodynamic farm in Chile. It was immediately clear to her that the biodynamic principles of respecting nature and nurturing ecology within the vineyard made sense in both a scientific framework and on an intuitive level. She embraced the philosophy and made a point to study and implement its principles at every opportunity. With this knowledge, she returned to work in California for Lynmar and De Loach Vineyards, both of which are in the Russian River Valley.
During her three years at De Loach Vineyards, Virginia worked closely with her growers, moving their vineyards to more sustainable farming methodologies and, in the process, improving quality and moderating farming costs. Her mentor at De Loach, Greg La Follette, taught her to understand both vineyards and winemaking at an intuitive level.
Working side-by-side with winemakers Hugh Chappelle at Lynmar Estate and Greg La Follette, Virginia couldn’t help but follow their winemaking with interest and in 2008 she began making wine for Truett Hurst Winery. Bringing her former background in the Russian River Valley to the attention of the Truett Hurst team, she added Russian River Valley wines to the winery’s portfolio.
Today, she oversees winemaking for Truett Hurst wines in Dry Creek Valley, VML Winery in Russian River Valley, as well as the Bradford Mountain and Healdsburg Ranches brands.
Virginia is a strong advocate for alternative agriculture. She is currently on the Demeter Board for education on biodynamic farming, with the goal of developing educational resources for farmers who are pursuing this approach to farming.