Bonny Doon Vineyard is situated in the Santa Cruz Mountains in the tiny hamlet of Bonny Doon. The winery was founded in 1983 by the Grahm family. Randall Grahm, Winemaker and President-for-Life of Bonny Doon Vineyard, has observed that the sun-loving grapes of the Rhone valley are very happy in the septentrional varities of marsanne, roussanne, viognier and syrah and the meridional varieties of grenache, mourvedre, and cinsault. These grapes produce an array of favorites including Vin Gris de Cigare (thinking person's pink wine), Le Sophiste (roussanne/marsanne melange), Clos de Gilroy (young, fruity grenache), Le Cigare Volant (Cryptoneuf-du-Pape), Garnacha (the strong Pink Wine), and a dramatically intense Muscat "Vin de Glaciere" (wine of the icebox).
"After traveling in Europe," Randall Grahm explains, " I became a complete Burgund-o-phile. I wanted to make The Great American Pinot Noir." Randall earned a U.C. Davis enology degree and then, along with his father, Alan, bought Bonny Doon. Intent on creating a Burgundian-style vineyard, Randall hauled in ten tons of limestone per acre and used Burgundian vine spacings. Now, with his French-style Pinots well under way, Randall has gained fame for his Rhone varieties including Marsanne, Roussanne, Mourvedre and Viognier. He has also had considerable success with Italian-style wines. He produces dessert wines and distilled spirits. In addition to his talent as a winemaker, Randall writes America's funniest label notes.
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Tasting Notes—December 1998