We first visited Frick Winery in 2011 during the Winter Wineland event, enjoyed our tasting and walked away then with a vertical of Syrah. A few years later we opened that vertical and loved the wine again. And then did nothing about it; didn’t visit again, didn’t buy any more wine. We remedied that situation last Saturday.
Frick Winery is Bill Frick and his 7 acres of Rhône varietals. As a one-man shop he produces around 1,000 cases per year, depending on how harvest goes that year. It’s interesting that some of the vines are head-trained, a growing technique usually done only with Zinfandel. Frick is located high up in the Dry Creek Valley, maybe the northernmost winery in that AVA.
On Saturday, we tasted the Cinsaut (often called Cinsault), Grenache, Mourvèdre and Cotes de Frick (Rhône blend). It was interesting tasting these varietals, usually used for blending and not as highlighted varietals, especially since we had recently tasted another 100% Mourvèdre. That was from Premonition Cellars, with grapes grown in the Russian River Valley instead of the Dry Creek Valley. The two wines, from the same grape, tasted quite different, which is the fun part of wine tasting and different AVAs with different microclimates. Both very good, just different.
Actually, the wine we liked best was the 2016 Cinsaut. Fruity and not too big, and ready to drink right now. There are all of 7 acres of Cinsaut planted in Sonoma County! For comparison purposes, there are about 12,000 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon planted in Sonoma County. The 2017 Cotes de Frick blend was also quite good. It’s a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Viognier (19% or so!). Still a bit young, and needs some food to go with it. We’ll lay down those bottles for a few years before opening.
As before, Bill Frick poured for us in the small, cozy tasting room. Now a bit different with Plexiglas barriers up to comply with Covid-19 health standards. Still a bit funky and individualistic, made even more so by the Miles Davis music playing in the background.
Just a fun tasting experience, with really good wine.