Visual Tasting: Alamosa Wine Cellars 2006 Texacaia

I think Jim Johnson must like “sleepers”.

When we visited Alamosa Wine Cellars in Bend, Texas – that was before they had the tasting room in Lampasas, I was completely fascinated with his still-in-the-barrel Viognier, but not overly impressed with the red wines we tasted. I bought a few bottles of the 2006 Texacaia because it was interesting, but completely “didn’t get” the Palette.

Several months later, Julie and I had the opportunity to share a meal with Jim and he opened a bottle of Palette for us saying, “This is a SERIOUS wine.” As the meal progressed, that bottle continued to open, and when I sampled the remainder of the bottle that he sent home with us the following day, it had REALLY OPENED UP and was some of the best wine I have ever tasted.

A couple of days ago I pulled one of the bottles of Texacaia and decided to see if it, like the Palette, was a “sleeper”.

With my Palette experience etched in memory, I poured the Texacaia through a Venturi to let it breathe quickly and open up faster, and gave it a few swirls for good measure, then started “painting”.

Alamosa Wine Cellars 2006 Texacaia visual tasting

Alamosa Wine Cellars 2006 Texacaia – Day 1

Dark, stone fruit, raisins, dried plums (OK, “prunes”), and smoky pepper caught my nose, and the flavor matched the nose fairly well except for this high note that I can’t describe except that I get the same flavor, only stronger, from every Texas dry “Lenoir” that I have tasted. It’s yellow with a black shadow for other syneshtetics. Unfortunately, that particular flavor can overpower everything else in a wine for me, and I lose interest in it; however, there was way too much going on in the Texacaia to give up on it. It has a “creamy” finish to it that I found particularly fascinating, so I finished the painting,corked the bottle, and decided to give it a day.

Day 2

Here’s where I insist that Jim must like “sleepers”. Like the Palette, the introduction of a little air and time allowed the Texacaia to wake up and express itself. Here’s the Texacaia, Day 2:

Alamosa 2006 Texacaia Day 2

Alamosa Wine Cellars 2006 Texacaia – Day 2

Very pleasant nose with lighter aromas present. Still mostly raisin, plum, pepper, smoke, but more of the complexity expressed in the nose. The flavor was slightly more “fruit-forward”, along the lines of a moonlit night being “brighter” than a moonless night. And that is just fine with me.

I picked up hints of tanned leather (the tamed version of the yellow/black I tasted yesterday) which meshed very well with the earthiness underneath. Slight overtones of black cherry, but the middle was a constant interplay of dark, stony, berries and fruit. The finish wasn’t as creamy as yesterday and it didn’t seem to linger as much as before, but it was a pleasant one.

Guess I need to order Jim’s latest Palette and Texacaia to compare.


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Visual Tasting: Alamosa Wine Cellars 2006 Texacaia — 1 Comment

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