Bon Niche Cellars recently displayed their wines over a five day span at the Paso Robles Bordeaux Varietals event. Bon Niche, a family owned boutique winery, produces Voutes, Red blends, L’entrée (Malbec), Chemin another Red blend, and Fenetres a Petit Verdot.
Bon Niche is small and they do not have scheduled Tasting Room hours, but they do take appointments and reservations for tasting at the cellars. In the next several paragraphs are a selection of the wines we tasted at the Bordeaux style event. Bon Niche has several other bottlings and more information on these are available at the Bon Niche website.
The 2010 Voutres “Arches” is a delightful blend of Malbec (45%), Petit Verdot (45%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (10%). It’s a fruity Cab, with undertones of fruit and oak. Berries dominate, along with a touch of Plum. It pulls you in from the nose to the ending taste as it lingers on the palate.
L’ Entrée is their 2010Malbec. With a berry overtone, it is not an Argentinian Malbec, but rather one which reflects the grapes of California’s Central Coast. It has the long tannic finish characteristic of high quality Malbecs, and its long finish keeps the flavor in the palate after the sip is gone.
The 2009 Chemin blends 40% Cab, 25% Malbec, 20% Petit Verdot, and the last 15% are Merlot and Cab Franc. This is definitely a Bordeaux style, with a ruby color, Prunes, Pears and Berries on the palate. The finish is not only smooth, but ends with a mild hint of almonds.
The final, the 2010 Fenetres, is a full Petit Verdot. With a nose reminiscent of coffee, the aromas also fill out with chocolate. This is not overly tannic, but the tannins are present and add to the finish. Also on the finish are a hint of almonds, making it a delightful ending.
The vineyard is not easily accessible from downtown Paso, but is definitely worth the drive to get out to the property. Owners Wally and Joyce Murray have created a special small producer which can compete with the “Big boys” on quality.
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