Thornton Winery Temecula Wines
Beautiful scenery, just like in Europe, took our breath away as we visited and filmed Thornton Winery Temecula Wines in Southern California. The first stop was Thornton Winery and we tasted from exquisite Champagne (Sparkling Wine) to Chardonnay, and Syrah with winemaker Don. Nestled in the heart of the Temecula Valley Wine Country, THORNTON WINERY opened in 1988. The winery beautifully combines old world style with new world taste to create award-winning wines. Here the Méthode Champenoise process is used because it has proven to be the best for producing fine quality Sparkling Wine / Champagne.Hope you enjoy our tasting video as much as we deed for the following Thornton wines;
Brut Champagne – Chardonnay Sans Oak – Estate Syrah
C: We are at Thornton Winery and this is one of only two Wineries in the area with sit down tasting.
J: All the Medals on the wall, You could pave with all the way to San Francisco Don’s way, they won so many awards here. You must be very proud of all.
Don: I am very proud you know, especially from an area that has been lesser known in California. And its been lot of fun being a part of getting the area more known and really being a part of campaigning the wines of Temecula Valley. And so every medal we win is really a victory for all of Temecula.
J: Well, because Temecula is so young.
Don: Our wine industry is really in its infancy still, when you compare, Napa Valley started back in the eight teen hundreds making wine.
J: A very promising infant, I can say that.
D: A really good looking baby.
J: A very good looking baby. Also driving through the road here is spectacular.
D: It is such a beautiful Valley and even in southern California people do not realize what they have in their backyard. It’s such an amazing place.
J: Well I hope you get to come here and enjoy some of the wonderful Thornton wines. What we gone try today?
D: Oh, we got a fuel, our brand new release of 2004 Brut Reserve witch we just released and then we have our 2008 Sun Top Chardonnay witch is made of course without Oak and then the final one is our 2006 Estate Syrah, which is our red Rhone varietal hat is we were talking about before an the Syrah we are definitely proud of.
C: And something special you do here, you taste in flights.
J: Yes and you get this information sheet, correct?
C: You get educated.
D: Yes, its nice, because the servers will give you the sheet of different wines and so as You sit down and choose Your flight, You get a sheet with all the four wines that are in Your flight, some bread and cheese, its a really nice experience.
J: That is all about wine! Wine with family, friends and its a very sensual experience and as you know more – you can enjoy it more.
D: Yes! Absolutely.
J: I can’t wait to taste mine Brut Bubbly, toast!
C: In case you forget, you have the information right here.
C: Mmm It is creamy right of way, it has a buttery creaminess for me and it also refreshing.
J: Floral on the nose
D: It has a lot of really nice tropical notes. Lots of green apple and pineapple.
J: There is nothing more beautiful then seeing these little pearls rising in the glass.
D: That’s right all these tiny bubbles
J: You did do a good job with your Champenoise Méthode, the bubbles are small and tide
D: They say the smaller the bubble the finer the Champagne. And the reason being in the smaller bubbles the softer the CO2 feels on your palate. So you are able to taste the wine much better.
C: getting tiny bit of pear
J: Also more apple like fresh green fruit
D: Yes all those classical Brut flavors, also the yeastiness, toasty yeast to it and the creaminess are all the se great characters of our champagne.
J: It is a great address for Champagne lovers, that’s for sure!
2008 Thornton Winery Chardonnay – Sans Oak -Temecula
Now we are moving on to the Chardonnay and you said it did not see any oak
D: Yes this wine did not see oak it is 100% stainless steel fermented and as well aged in stainless steel. We bottled early and that is why it retained all those fruit characters. Early days in California you saw oak fermented and aged Chardonnay and now the new trend is to see the varietal character with nice clean fruit. It is fun to see Chardonnay what really is and not masked by oak.
J: It is a nice that you can offer with oak, fuller bodied Chardonnay to pair with heavier foods and saucy meaty dishes and then if you have a fresher Chardonnay you can enjoy it with lighter fair. What type of food would you recommend?
D: Cheeses, because it has the fresh fruit flavors that you do not find if in barrel aged
J: I think it would go well with sushi too.
C: Fresh fruit I’m getting peach and nectarine.
D: It is because it is not covered with oak.
J: It taste like an apple orchard.
C: It is a lot lighter then an oaky Chardonnay, but it is still nice and mellow.
J: It has nice acidity, I like that. Right on the middle- palate. It has a lingering aromas it is really nice.
The color is beautiful straw blond with a little bit of gold.
C: And in back of my tongue I’m getting stone fruit also. This is a very nice well balanced Chardonnay.
J: What type of cheese would you eat with this wine?
D: probably milder chesses nothing pungent, like my favorite Sonoma chesses, Pepper Jack.
C: How about apricot Stilton?
D: Oh Stilton would be really good!
J: I still taste the stone fruit, it has a long lingering finish. I always thought that only wines aged in oak have longer finish, but this sans oak wine has an exceptional long finish. It really stays with you.
D: The last wine is our 2006 Thornton Estate Syrah – Temecula. And this is the project we started when I first got here actually. It was our Estate Syrah. Lots of people planted just a little syrah not knowing how well it will do. I was a big proponent of syrah and told them it will be fantastic here, let me show it to you. Everything we did to make this syrah I could not be happier with it.
J: On the nose is definite syrah. I like the comforting fact that it smells like syrah.
D: It is my winemaking philosophy I want the wine varietal characters speak for them self. Wines to be what they are supposed to be. So many varietals today seem to cross over so it is really hard to know what they are. I want people to know right away when they put the glass to their nose oh this is a Chardonnay or a Syrah.
J: It is a beautiful vineyard here. The whole facility is exquisite. It has a very European feeling. It is quiet but it has energy, maybe from your wine barrels Don.
J: Thank you for having us and we let you go back to work so you can make more wonderful Thornton wines.
C: Ok go back to work now. 🙂