Rhys Vineyards: Anyone familiar with them?
Just read a gushing column on Rhys Vineyards by Slate's Mike Steinberger (don't normally read his stuff, so don't know his rep in the wine world):
I was intrigued because for me Burgundy reds have more often than not left me wondering what all the fuss is about (I gravitate more toward the whites from Puligny-Montrachet and Chassagne-Montrachet), and it sounds as if Rhys is doing some really interesting non-California style pinot noir.
Has anyone out there actually drunk anything from them?
I tasted through most of the 2008s as pre-release samples. The syrahs were just OK but the pinots were stunning. Very Burgundian in structure and style.
I would disagree with the term non-California style and I think Kevin Harvey, the founder of Rhys, would too. He's making some very good Santa Cruz Mountains wines. It's a region worth exploring. I have some Cronin pinot noirs that are wonderful. Mount Eden has a history of success. Varner (brothers) are relative newcomers and are doing great, too.
Hopefully JBL will chime in. . .
I like Kevin's wines *very* much . . .
Now, are they Burgundian? Well they certainly are NOT in the "Pinot-as-Syrah" camp/style! The goal, of course, is not to make Burgundy -- Kevin is in the Santa Cruz Mountains, one of the finest (and most under-appreciated) AVAs in the United States. Kevin is making SCM Pinot Noir, and one would not necessarily mistake his wine for (most) Burgundy, but I would definitely categorize them as "Burgundian" in style. His wines DO have a "sense of place" (IMHO) are are more classically based in that way, rather than the over-the-top, in-your-face, fruit bomb Pinot Noir style.