So I did a shortish bicycle ride near Healdsburg yesterday (icy wind, but pretty) and I decided to stop at a new for me winery tasting room-Hawke Cellars in Jimtown. Very friendly tasting room manager. Nice place. AND...the wines seemed to have that wonderful earthyness I associate with "good" Alexander Valley reds!
The 2007 Merlot was very nice, warm, smooth, with still some tannic kick. Only 14.1 % abv (nominally) and I quite enjoyed the warm plum merlot fruit. They also poured two 2008 Cabernets. Both showed very well...with a lean earthy but ripe character. The Alexander Valley Vineyards cabernet from up the road shows more pyrazines, but these wines were in no way over-ripe or alcoholic or extracted.
A very nice showing. AND...they had a 2011 Cabernet Vin Gris that was bracing in saline minerality and watermelon-strawberry flavors that was very nice.
A fine stopping point.
Also stopped at Medlock Ames. BEAUTIFUL tasting room done in a classy understated wine-country0rural-industrial style. Very professional tasting room staff. Wines showed more extraction and alcohol and were definitely "bigger" in style, although the 2009 was quite bracing in red fruit and had good acidity.