Coral Mustang Wines
Tempranillo •Vista Creek Vineyard
California: Paso Robles
What We Say
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Mission Codename: Mustang Penny
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Many Wine Spies Operatives have sent in recommendations for today’s winery. Respond to reports of fantastic wine from Coral Mustang Wines by sending Agent Red to investigate. If the wine is great, procure a supply for our thirsty Operatives
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Coral Mustang Wines
Wine Subject: 2004 Tempranillo
Winemaker: Penelope Gadd-Coster
Backgrounder: Tempranillo (Temp-rah-NEE-yoh) is primary red wine grape for much of Spain. It is also a principal blending grape in Port, and is known by the name of tinta roriz. Tempranillo vines tend to have a shorter growing season and thrive cooler climates. In California, winemakers have had great success with the varietal, despite hotter growing conditions. Hotter conditions can tend to introduce undesirable attributes, leading to wines that are indistinct or flabby. Somehow, despite the heat of Paso Rbles, today’s fantastic wine manages to be wonderful. Today’s California Tempranillo is a great wine with a fantastic QPR. Deeply impressed with today’s showing, read Agent Red’s tasting notes and mission report below
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Rich garnet with a deep and slightly murky dark heart, concentrated color right out to the bright edges of the wine with stubby legs that begin high up on the glass
Smell – Bright blueberry, cherry and chocolate dust at first, followed closely by darker fruits of plum and blackberry – then soft spices
Feel – An intriguing mouthfeel that is both soft and bold at the same time. The wine is round and soft, but also big and grippy. If this sounds contradictory, well, so be it. Personally, I love the duality!
Taste – A big and bright cherry with smoky blueberry, blackberry and dusky plum are followed by dark chocolate-covered cherry. Whereas Tempranillo can be overpowered by oak, particularly in California examples, this wine does not suffer at all from over-oaking. Rather, the wines superior fruit shines through
Finish – A Long finish, with lingering flavors cherries, chocolate and ripe dark fruits that go on and on
Conclusion – What a delightful wine this is! With a truly unique feel and delicious flavors and aromas, this rich and balanced wine is a really pleasure to drink! Tempranillo is built for aging, but I declare that this wine is ready to drink now. To think that it will only improve with age makes me want to sock a few bottles away for another year! The bright acidity in the wine makes it a great food wine. Winemaker Penelope Gadd-Coster has crafted a really wonderful wine here. the only thing that surprised us about the wine was the low price. This wine has a excellent QPR.
The phone call came in the middle of the night.
I tried to shake the sleep out of my head. As you know, late-night wake-up are not uncommon in this line work, but I was particularly tired on this particular night.
I had just spent the last 24 hours in Paso Robles, on the hunt for distinctive red wines. The mission had gone well. You know this because you have taken advantage of some spectacular recent offerings.
Trying to sound awake, I answered the phone, “He… (ahem) Hello?”
Silence on the other end. I said, “Agent Red here.”
The voice on the other end was a faint whisper: "_Anthozoa. Fera Equus caballus. Mane._ "
Then, click, they hung up.
Great, another coded message – and in Latin at that! Can’t my field assets just give me straight-forward wine alerts?
Okay, Let’s see. Anthozoa. Easy, _"Coral_". My marine biology studies payed off on that one. Next up, Fera Equus caballus_… “Feral” and then, "_Horse", of course. Wild Horse perhaps? Ahhh, too easy, Mustang.
What about the word, Mane. Several meanings, but in the context of wine? Easy again, Early. What wine name has the same meaning? Tempranillo!
Then it all came together easily. Coral plus Mustang, duh, CORAL MUSTANG, a winery I had just placed under preliminary surveillance. And, I knew that winemaker Penelope Gadd-Coster had a well revered Tempranillo wine.
Satisfied with my deductive reasoning, I sent Penelope an email, requesting a covert rendezvous. Given the lateness of the hour, I was surprised by her immediate reply. She agreed to a meeting in Paso Robles the next morning. It ‘so happened’ that she was in town, checking on the vineyards.
Hmmm. Was the late night call from her? Stay tuned for the next time that we feature another of Penny’s great wines. For now, please be sure to try this wonderful made-in-Paso, Spanish Tempranillo!
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The Vista Creek Vineyards, where the Tempranillo grapes for today’s wine was gron, can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
Awards and Accolades:
Silver Medal Winner – San Francisco Chronicle Wine Tasting
About This Wine:
This wine is 100% Tempranillo from the Vista Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles. The grapes were harvested at 24.5° Brix, de-stemmed and lightly crushed. The must was then inoculated with yeast and fermented at 85° F until the right balance of tannins and fruit were attained. At near dryness the must was drained and pressed to barrels. The wine was left to finish its secondary malolactic fermentation and then racked off its gross lees.
This wine was left to age in 1-2 year old American and French oak barrels for 13 months- the time determined by tasting. The barrels were then racked to tank for the final blending. Bottled unrefined and unfiltered, this wine is showing the perfect balance between oak and fruit.
Bright aromas of blueberry and cherry fruit are enhanced by Chinese five spice and soy. Leather, smoke, and vanilla round out the experience. The fruit aromas are carried through in the mouth. The perfect balance of acid to fruit along with the smooth structure maintains the varietal character of this wine. The taste lingers on the tongue with roasted nuts, vanilla, and blackberry.
The perfect match with Paella, roasted or grilled lamb and beef, and hard cheeses like Manchego and Asiago.
About The Winery:
My name is Penelope Coral Gadd-Coster. Together, with my husband Frank, we started Coral Mustang™. We love travel, good food, and of course, great wine. During a visit to Spain — one of our favorite countries — we learned how perfect and versatile the Tempranillo grape is for producing world class wine.
As the winemaker my goal is to create a truly personalized ultra-premium wine. My philosophy of winemaking stems from experiences working and mentoring with some of the most highly regarded winemakers in Sonoma County including the late André Tchelistcheff.
I believe the best wines exhibit the characteristics of the grape. Having balanced vineyards and a blending of winemaking techniques help to achieve that goal. Frank assists the growers and me to oversee the vineyards to achieve the best that the grapes can bring to the wines.
Coral Mustang™ Wines has become a reality. With the assistance of family, the Coral Mustang™ name and logo was established.
Coral, my middle name, expresses my lifelong love of the ocean. A common pastime my husband and I enjoy is spending the afternoon on the Sonoma County bluffs overlooking the mighty Pacific — with a picnic lunch and a bottle of wine. Even through wind and rain we are die-hard ocean lovers! Since Frank regularly fishes and crabs, our table is often filled with the oceans bounty.
Mustang is a term of respect often used to describe a person who rises through the ranks of their profession. Twenty years ago I took a job as a crush “hand” at a prestigious Sonoma County winery. From walking the vineyards sampling sugars, testing and evaluating the juice and wines, to pulling hoses in the cellar, I discovered my passion for winemaking. I stayed on after that first “crush” and in those following years learning the craft, working my way through the ranks to become a winemaker. This experience has given me the ability to understand and work with every aspect of the winemaking process from grape to bottle.
We have seen and are encouraged by more and more plantings of Tempranillo grapes. As these vineyards come into maturity we will be bringing more vineyard designates into our program.
Our logo, the Seahorse anchored to coral, perfectly depicts our lives and our wines. We are grounded in our dedication to our wines, our customers, and to each other.
Our wines are included in the new book: Great Boutique Wines You Can Buy Online by Master Sommelier Catherine Fallis and Robert M. Cohen. Quote “the best Rosé of Tempranillo in the US”
Poduction: 400 cases
Bottled: Feb 28, 2006