I've mentioned probably a couple of time how exciting it is to be on the sideline of Idaho's wine scene. What's pretty cool is I've been one the side lines watching Cinder winery evolve. Way, way, way back in the early days of Syringa, 15+ years ago. Joe Schnerr and Melanie Krause went pretty much door to door selling their wine. They came into Syringa and sold us on their wine, working hard ever since, they have made a name for themselves and the Snake River Valley AVA.
Melanie grew up in Boise, studied agriculture at WSU and worked in the vineyard for Cht. St. Michelle. It was about 2006 when they made the move. At the time, Joe was working as a chemist......
...I'm working on a conspiracy theory that chemists make the best wine makers. In my research of the past couple months, I've noticed a theme. Joe with Cinder. I didn't mention it but Mike Pearson with Colter's Creek was an electrical engineer turned chemist, Wynne Peterson-Nedry with Ridgecrest Wines, chemist. Its definitely NOT a bad thing, just something I've noticed. Now back to your regularly scheduled blog...
It was probably 2008-2009 when they came into Syringa. I remember being excited back then that Idaho was making wines/had a wine scene. Since then they went through a couple of different wine rep locally, they've landed on great representation now and I was able to sit down with my rep and Joe and taste through their line up. Have I mentioned what an exciting time is in Idaho for wine right now. Ok my heart is about ready to explode.
This is from an a tri-fold brochure, maybe from the 40's/50's, with more than several fun facts on Idaho. The above passage is the back page. I saved this because of the syringa and bluebird pictures, but scored a reminder of why I live here.
Whoa I've really digressed. How about the Sapphire selections for June? Let's start with the White. I think if I didn't know anything about The Bluebird and stumbled in and decided to join the wine club I would join the Sapphire for white wines. Imma be honest this is the level with the least subscribers. I'm ok with that, 😔 Don't worry though, if my guilt trip worked I ordered extra bottles this month, so you'll can imbibe this baby on the patio.
The Cinder 2021 Dry Viognier, I'm going to let Melanie talk about this wine,
If you get wine from this level of the wine club I already know you have good taste 😉, but since you all appreciate white wine you probably know that not all Viognier's have to by rich and syrupy. This wine is so beautiful layered, there are tropical hints hit right up front, mango flavors exploded on my pallet, followed by juicy peach. The comes around and knock you out for lots of acid on the finish, it finished kind of hot, 13.5% but it a full bodied white with lots of complex flavors. So glad this wine is out there representing Idaho.
I had a really hard time picking between the reds with this level too. Ultimately I tried to get something that you might not be able to get unless you visited their tasting room in Garden City. Then it came down to can I get it?, and do I want to do Another Tempranillo for June re:Indigo Red and Peacock level. After factoring in all that I pretty much went with my heart. I went with the Cinder 2020 Malbec, when I tried it I remember thinking "Damn, this is from Idaho?" I recently tasted through a cadre of Paul Hobbs wines and tasted Uh-maz-ing Malbecs from Argentina and France, places that have been doing wine for longer than Idaho has been a state! Then there's this little Malbec from the Emerald Slope and Sawtooth vineyards in the Snake River AVA. There were elegant layers of exotic teas, and layer of rich dark fruit and woodsy vanilla tones. I'm finishing this up right around dinner time and I am starving thinking about all the good food to eat with this wine. The winemakers like grilled brats and scalloped potatoes with this wine. I was thinking the Bad Dad Burger, or better yet the 32 oz. Tomahawk.
This is it for Idaho wines, we'll maybe not. I'm trying to line up some Verdejo from Cinder, yah I said Verdejo. Cinder bringing a little Spain to your backyard. We should be getting a case this week 🤗...it's so good. I would love to get feedback in the comments below of your thoughts on Idaho wine.