I can’t think of a better way to spend an hour or so tasting wines at my favorite wine shop The Fine Wine Shop in Livonia, Michigan. I know that sometimes I sound like a broken record always mentioning this shop, but I am getting spoiled by all the different wines that I have tasted and many times curated by an owner of a winery. I mean, there are not that many shops that are interested or can make it happen. This is now the third time that I have had a tasting conducted by Korbin Ming and he is the Associate Winemaker at Korbin Kameron Winery and he even remembered me (I guess because of my questions and my constant photographing of the wines). Korbin Kameron wines is the brand for Moonridge Vineyards located on Mount Veeder, a curious location which separates Napa County from Sonoma County and there nineteen acres can be found on both sides of the slope. Mitchell Ming is the proprietor along with his wife, and the winery is named after his twin children and his other daughter has a vineyard named for her.
We started off with Korbin Kameron Sauvignon Blanc Moon Mountain District 2019 and an Estate Grown wine. Moon Mountain District is a subregion of Sonoma County. This wine had initial fermentation in Stainless Steel and then was aged for four months in oak, of which twenty percent was new, and three-hundred cases were made. This wine had the classic nose of lemongrass and a touch of lime, while on the palate the classic taste of grapefruit and perhaps a touch of honeydew melon, with a nice dry finish. We then followed up with Korbin Kameron Semillon Moon Mountain District 2018 is an Estate Grown wine. Semillon is probably one of the least known, major varietals in the wine industry. It makes some of the greatest sweet wines and it also makes some of the greatest dry wines. Its home is Bordeaux, though it is done extremely well in parts of Australia and among a few wineries in California. A wine that starts in Stainless Steel and finishes in oak. There was only one barrel made of this wine or twenty-five cases or three-hundred bottles, so I am glad that we got some, and I consider it a rare coup for us. This organically made wine used native yeasts and had a nose that I would call plush floral and citrus, and it brought notes of citrus and ripe pear with a nice lingering long count finish.
We then had a chance to compare two different vintages of the Korbin Kameron Merlot. Both were Estate Grown, but the 2011 vintage was Sonoma County and the 2015 vintage had the Moon Mountain District AVA. The wines are aged for eighteen months in French Oak, of which half is new. They make about three hundred cases of the Merlot each vintage. Once again, I felt like I was out of the mainstream. Everyone was going for the 2015 which was vibrant with Black Cherry notes both in the nose and on the palate, the concept of big fruit is the norm. I was enthralled with the 2011 vintage which while still having the notes of Black Cherry had mellowed and was multi-layered with richness and elegance.