On one of our day trips, we were very over dressed to visit some of the wineries in the Carmel Valley. The reason being, we planned on having the last wine tasting at Bernardus Winery. Not that you have to be dressed up for the tasting room, but the tasting room was on the grounds, which also contained the Bernardus Lodge and Spa, and at the Lodge was where we were planning on having dinner that evening at Marinus Restaurant.
The grounds of the estate were beautiful; you could see the winery spread out in the back. The Lodge and Spa were very enticing and made you feel that you were somewhere special. When we went into the tasting room, we told them that we dinner reservations at the restaurant afterwards and all of a sudden we felt like royalty, with the attention lauded unto us.
We started off with a wine that they were quite proud of a Marsanne varietal grown on the estate in Carmel Valley, that was very refreshing and different in taste then other white wines that I had tried up to that time. Since then I have had a few other bottles of this varietal, but this particular bottle has a special place for me.
Then they offered us a couple of other white wines and allowed us to try a couple of different vintages, which I found very impressive. The next two wines that they poured were made from vineyards in Monterey County. The first was a Sauvignon Blanc and they we tried both a 1999 and a 2000 vintage. Then they offered us tastes from three vintages of their Chardonnay wine, a 1997, a 1999 and a 2000.
We then tried two different red wines. We had their estate Cabernet Sauvignon 1998 which was very enjoyable. The last two wines that they poured for us were the best, as far as I was concerned. They next poured us a 2000 Marinus which was also an estate wine. This is a proprietary red wine that they make and it was excellent.
We finished the tasting, and bought a mixed case of wines, put that in our trunk and then proceeded to the Marinus Restaurant. We had an excellent dinner from appetizers to dessert with out missing a course in between. I can not, unfortunately recall our dinner as my mind was sidetracked this evening over other events. I do recall that we started with a Bernardus Marsanne Estate 1997 and then we enjoyed a Bernardus Marinus 1997, which we did not have the pleasure of tasting earlier (or of having a chance to buy any of this vintage for our cellar). We both recall having a wonderful dinner at Marinus and a great afternoon at the Bernardus Winery.