I got a heads up from another local wine blogger about a wine tasting at The Fine Wine Source in Livonia, Michigan and it was nearby for me. This wine shop was on my radar, but for ages I was always off of work on Sunday and Monday, and so was the wine shop. I had a chance meeting with the owner while dining at his daughter’s restaurant and I reintroduced myself to him. The wine shop will require a special visit and article down the road. I was going to meet Brian Loring who calls himself “Owner/Yeast Herder” for Loring Wine Company. The tasting event reminded me more of going to a winery and doing a tasting, as it was catch as catch can, and I must say that Brian Loring did a great job keeping abreast of which wine to pour for everyone, as everyone was coming and going.
The first wine that I tasted was the Loring Wine Santa Lucia Highlands Chardonnay 2016 and I have to admit that my ears perked up, as I find that is probably my favorite district in the Monterey County. This is a Chardonnay made from the Robert Young (Wente Selection) Dijon 76 Clones and sourced from the Sierra Mar and Rosella’s Vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands, and I have had other wines from these particular vineyards. The two vineyards were treated separately, but both were aged for ten months in half French Oak and half American Oak, of which twenty percent were new. The winery produced one-hundred-twenty-five cases of this Chardonnay. The wine had a nice soft color, a soft oaky nose and was very balanced and easy to drink, and it sounds like I had the same opinion, as I had heard that they had run out of the wine at the shop.
The first red wine for the tasting was Loring Wine Clos Pepe Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir 2015. This single vineyard wine is in the AVA that originally was Santa Rita Hills when it was established in 2001 as a sub district of the Santa Barbara County; due to protests from the large Chilean wine company Vina Santa Rita, the AVA was changed to Sta. Rita Hills in 2006. This wine spent ten months aging in French Oak, of which fifteen percent was new, and they produced one-hundred-fifty cases. I thought that wine had a lighter nose for a Pinot Noir, but it had a nice soft light purple color and it was well balanced. I think that it would benefit some eight to ten years in the cellar to really enjoy.