David Coffaro Vineyard and Winery Winemaker's Diary

Week 48
November 28, 1999 to December 4, 1999 

Sunday, November 28, 1999

Tom Hill has posted some notes on our wines at the West Coast Wine Forum, and, with his permission, are reprinted here in our forum.  He has been too kind, but I must convince you I did not pay him off. To receive a posting such as this is very gratifying and keeps me striving to do better. I do also as he does think that overall my 1998 wines are possibly the best and that we have improved from year to year. I was encouraged by Tom's comments on the 98 Zin, and even though I consider it a good food wine,  I am still waiting for it to fill out before I consider it on a par with the 94,95,96 and 97. I agree with Tom that my '96s do show a complexity that could be attributed to brett. I was thrilled and surprised by the coincidence of reading his notes for the first time late last night after tasting the 96 Petite Sirah and 96 Estate Cuvee as well as a 1970 La Mission Haut Brion. I thought that these three wines all showed some Brett qualities. (chemists feel that Brettanimises (SP)is a bug that can ruin a wine). Since most of the old Bordeaux have been contaminated with it I feel a little can be OK. I am striving for clean wines so I am planning to have the 96s checked to see if it does exist (It can get out of control). I will report back on what I find out. 

Tuesday, November 30, 1999

Some of you have probably seen my postings of the past regarding our New Years Eve Party. I am hearing that most of you are planning to stay home. So be it! But if you want to indulge in some of the best wine in production ( not necessarily Coffaro ) and bring a sleeping bag---AND MUST STAY AWAKE TILL MIDNITE AND BEYOND AND MUST DANCE---YOU ARE WELCOME. Please let us know. 

I have spent days trying to figure out what barrels go into which wine. I am starting to realize that maybe I really am the only person who could know our harvested wines well enough to make these decisions. I know some of you feel you could do a great job also and I am sure that is so. But the wines would be different. I am pretty confident I have some great wines this year and the blends will satisfy me and most of you. 

New Blends ( closer to final ) 

1999 Estate Cuvee                                 600 Cases to be Produced 
33% Zinfandel / 32% Cabernet / 23% Carignan / 12% Petite Sirah 

1999 Zinfandel                                      1000 Cases to be Produced 
75% Zinfandel / 8% Petite Sirah / 7% Cabernet / 7% Cab Franc / 3% Barbera 

1999 Petite Sirah                                     525 Cases to be Produced 
75% Petite Sirah /15% Syrah / 4% Barbera / 3% Cabernet / 3% Zin 

1999 Carignan                                          200 Cases to be Produced 
75% Carignan / 12.5% Cab Franc / 12.5% Petite Sirah 

1999 Cabernet Franc                                 400 Cases to be Produced 
75% Cabernet Franc / 12.5% Syrah / 12.5% Petite Sirah 

1999 Aca Modot                                        250 Cases to be Produced 
60% Cabernet Sauvignon / 12% Cabernet Franc / 10% Barbera / 9% Merlot / 9% Malbec 

1999 Sauvignon Blanc        100%               200 Cases to be Produced 

1999 Pinot Noir                   100%                 50 Cases to be produced 

We are virtually sold out of our Carignan, Pinot and Aca Modot. 

Thursday, December 2, 1999

We have finally uploaded the new percentages to the order form on our site. As you will see by the new order form, we are not offering the Carignan and Pinot Noir any longer. We have very few cases of each one of those to sell. If any of you who are reading this diary are interested, please contact us. 

In the last posting, you will see the revised proposed percentages for all wines that we will produce this year. In addition to those mentioned, there will also probably be a new wine that we have alluded to in the past, but which has  not yet been named. In my diary, I have referred to it as "4th Mix" and it is a wine that will be produced from grapes that grow in the 4th "block" of our vineyard, which consists of a variety of old head-pruned vines commonly referred to in this area as an "Italian field blend." We will also likely be producing a late harvest Sauvignon Blanc, and of course--one of my favorite wines--Zp2C. 

I have tasted several of my 1998 wines lately and I'm happy with the way they have evolved. For drinkability, I think the 1998 Carignan and the Neighbors' Zinfandel are showing well at this time. The 1998 Aca Modot is still one of my favorites, but most of you would probably be better off aging the wine for 3 to 5 years. I however like to drink my wines young, so I am indulging myself with a bottle now and then. 

Friday, December 3, 1999

I know I have been down playing my 98 Estate Zin all the way from pressing last year-September 1998. I found out after inventory that I have more of this wine scheduled for  my consumption than any other, so I thought that I should bring up a bottle for hamburgers tonight (I feel zin is the best complement to hamburgers ever!). Boy it hit the spot--even compared to the 98 Estate Cuvee (only brought up for comparison of course <:))  ). It is spicy and is not too smooth and will fill out with a few more months of bottle age, but if you have several bottles, it may be time to try one. Tom Hill may be on to something.


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