Favia Erickson Winegrowers is first a collaboration between husband and wife duo winemaker Andy Erickson and viticulturalist Annie Favia.

“We are partners, a family, a team. And there is our home — a house and cellar, gardens and fruit trees: a collaboration that has meandered across generations, its stone first laid by Napa Valley’s earliest Italian immigrants. Our collaboration then wends outward and into the neighboring hills, visiting familiar vines and their tending hands. In these vineyards, curiosity and humility assemble to listen closely to the history of ancient soils, the natural currents of the everyday, and the myriad voices of those who foster the patient growth and harvest of our grapes. Favia is a celebration of a place and its people. Time, too, is our partner, immense and inexorable. We encounter millennia in the volcanic upheaval of our surrounds. Our vines enunciate the intricacies of the four seasons. Our stone cellar echoes with memory of vintages a century past. And finally, our work rests in barrel, quietly finding its voice over years. At its center, our work is a partnership with Nature. With reverence, we usher our bounty toward a new expression; we seek to bottle a glimpse of a time and place. Favia is the ever-resonant telling of a story still being written.” – Andy and Annie

2015 Favia

Rompecabezas Red Wine Spanish for “jig-saw puzzle”, Rompecabezas is inspired by the wines of the Southern Rhone, but of course is decidedly Californian in nature. With each successive vintage, the wine has gained density and complexity, as the vines come into their own, and Ann Kraemer’s vineyard team garners perspective and foresight. Whole cluster, rich, muscular Grenache, with notes of cocoa, leather, and black tea, was co-fermented with fresh, vibrant Mourvèdre in concrete fermenters. After a long, controlled maceration, the wine was blended with Syrah and aged in a combination of neutral French oak and 600-liter concrete eggs for 20 months. Darkly colored and highly aromatic, notes of olallieberry pie, rose petals, nutmeg and marjoram emanate from the glass. The flavors are mouthwateringly appealing, with fine tannins and vibrant natural acidity, bringing notes of Bing cherries, finocchiona salumi, dark plums and toasted Hungarian paprika. Certainly, a pleasantly complex puzzle of flavors and textures, with incredible focus on the palate.

Blend: 40% Mourvèdre, 32% Grenache, 28% Syrah

The Pairing…

The “jigsaw puzzle” is a perfect profile and homage to a Rhône blend. With Mourvèdre being at the forefront, the floral characters, earthy components and structure are beautiful with gripping tannin. The Grenache shines through with an abundance of ripe red fruit, plush texture and silky mouthfeel. The Syrah shows restraint with its dark fruit flavors and savory, spicy and earthy notes. This New World example is fruit-forward in style, masculine and can definitely make you a lot of friends! This wine can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes, with lamb and game being at the front of the line. A grilled steak, or veal with a rich demi-glace would also be an amazing combination.

Opus One

Opus One Winery is a winery in Oakville, California, United States. The wine was called Napa-Medoc until 1982 when it was named Opus One. The winery was founded as a joint venture between Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Château Mouton Rothschild and Robert Mondavi to create a single Bordeaux style blend based upon Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. The creation of this winery venture in 1980 was big news in the wine industry; de Rothschild's involvement added an air of respectability to the burgeoning Napa wine region. The first vintage, 1979 was released in 1984 at the same time as the 1980 vintage. In 1989 a new winery was built just down the road, the first vintage from the new winery was from 1991 and was released in 1994.

Opus One 2015

Initial dark fruit, spice and baking aromas in the 2015 Opus One are interwoven with seductive notes of violet, black tea, and sage. The entry is vibrant with ripe dark fruit flavors of plum, blackberry and blueberry followed by hints of vanilla and cocoa. Silky, fine-grained tannins provide structure and a creamy texture. The wine finishes with fresh acidity and a rich, lingering finish that promises longevity in the cellar.

The Wine Advocate – “The 2015 is a sexy, beautiful spice-bomb, with tons of cinnamon stick, cloves, fenugreek and pepper notes springing forth over a core of mulberries, plum preserves, blackberry pie and fragrant earth plus a waft of lavender. The palate is big, voluptuous and totally decadent.”

Blend: Cabernet Sauvignon 81%, Cabernet Franc 7%, Merlot 6%, Petit Verdot 4%, Malbec 2%

The Pairing…

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend. Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Come in and try the Opus One 2015 by the bottle or by the glass!

Enjoy it with:

RIBEYE STEAK Garlic Black Pepper Sauce, Spicy Kualoa Heirloom Eggplant, Waialua Asparagus, Pickled Beets, Ho Farm Tomatoes

-- Kerry Ichimasa, Assistant Wine Director