Selene Releases 20th Vintage Sauvignon Blanc

August 1st, 2012

Hello from Selene!

This is a special release for us. It was the 1992 vintage that Mia first harvested Sauvignon Blanc from Hyde Vineyards for her debut Sauvignon Blanc. Now 20 vintages later, we celebrate with the release of the 2011 Sauvignon Blanc, which The San Francisco Chronicle recommended as one of their Napa Sauvignon Blancs this year!

2011 Selene Sauvignon Blanc Hyde Vineyards (100% Sauvignon Blanc, 792 cases $28.00/bottle)
Wow, this is the 20th vintage of Selene Sauvignon Blanc from Hyde Vineyards! Needless to say time goes by fast and it seems like just yesterday, but that’s another story. We had a good amount of rainfall in the late winter along with a tad over 2 inches in both May and June. Add an unusually comfortable summer for humans; a little cooler than the grapevines like. It all adds up to the second year in a row that we pick in October. In general the more extended the season is for Sauvignon Blanc, the better, given no sugar spikes from hot weather and no rain during harvest, which was certainly the case with this 2011.

Mia’s tasting notes: Intense and distinctive, aromatics include pineapple, green mango, guava, white nectarine, honeydew melon, lemon curd, orange liquor, white pepper, sandalwood, rose water, and beeswax. Savory and mouthwatering, with a concentrated, long finish.

2010 Selene Merlot Frediani Vineyard (100% Merlot, 300 cases $35.00/bottle)
2010 was a cool, late starting vintage. Picture this: winemakers with nothing to do in September (besides those who make sparkling wine of course). As we are a nervous bunch, we winemakers know it’s not a simple waiting game either. The days keep getting shorter and the probability of rain gets bigger as the vintage goes on. A good measure of patience plus a large pinch of proactivity was in order. That, along with good luck, produced a particularly complex wine. Aged for 18 months in 40% new French barrels.

Mia’s tasting notes: Toasted vanilla pods, molasses and caramel, floral jasmine, red raspberry, black pepper, anise, tar, cocoa butter, chocolate, roasted coffee beans, plum and blueberry. Aromatics are nicely mirrored in the mouth with very good concentration and length; texture is smooth yet weighty with a structured tannin profile.

In other news, for those of you that happen to have the 2002 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon (the first vintage of Cabernet from Selene), we are happy to report that it received 92 points in the Wine Spectator 2002 Retrospective Tasting this May. If you are looking to buy an older vintage of Cabernet that drinks well now, but still has time, we recommend trying the 2005 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon we have available on the website under Library Wines.

And finally, in case you missed them, we still have our specials:

3 bottle Vertical of Dead Fred Cabernet.
Here’s what you get for $120.00 (shipping included!) – 1 bottle each of the 2006, 2007 and 2008 Selene Dead Fred Cabernet.

4 Bottle Vertical of Chesler1 bottle of 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 Chesler for $150.00 (shipping included)

6 Bottle Vertical of Chesler
1 bottle of 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 Chesler for $225.00 (shipping included)

Remember the 10% discount on 1 mixed case, and 20% discount on 2 mixed cases, including the Vertical Specials. Plus, 2-day Air shipping is included on all orders over $100. We will hold your order for you, (not charge your credit card) until we ship.

We can accept your orders on the BUY page of the website: www.selenewines.com , or print out the Order Form from the BUY page and fax or mail it to us, or give us a call (707) 258-8119.

Mia Klein and Tracy Hall

Find us on: Facebook or Twitter or YouTube!

Best of: Meat CSA – Victorian Farmstead

March 12th, 2012

It was back in October of 2010 that we decided to give a Paleo diet a try, after reading Robb Wolf’s Paleo Solution. It’s been over a year now and we have never felt better!

Paleo, short for Paleolithic, or sometimes called a caveman diet is basically a hunter-gatherer diet. Lean meat (grass fed), veggies, fruit, nuts, roots.

We gave up rice, beans, corn, all flours and gluten, and potatoes.

All this really meant in the long run, is we needed more fruit, veggies, and good grass fed meat (none of that stringy, chewy stuff)

At our local Friday Farmer’s Market in Sonoma, we met Adam Parks. Adam and his wife Laura own Victorian Farmstead, in Sebastopol. We think this the best beef, pork, lamb and chicken we’ve ever had.

We just renewed our year subscription of their CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) meat box. Adam is super flexible, and there are 5 or 10 pound boxes of meat every other week that include roasts, steaks and ground meats.

We signed up for 10 pounds every other week, plus a chicken. I know it sounds like a lot, but we end up buying even more from Adam every Friday.

You can also find Adam at the Moraga Farmer’s Market.

It’s cool to know we are supporting a local, sustainable, family owned operation.

I’m looking forward to posting some dishes we have made using Victorian Farmstead’s meats, so stay tuned! – Skippy

Big Red Release!

February 2nd, 2012

Hello from Selene!

Everyone has been asking about the new Red releases, so here they are! We are releasing the 2009 Selene Merlot, the 2006 Selene Chesler, and the 2008 Selene Dead Fred Cabernet Sauvignon. We also have two special Verticals of Chesler.

2009 Selene Merlot Frediani Vineyard (100% Merlot, 118 cases $35.00/bottle)
2009 late spring rains brought good news and bad news. Good news, the third year of drought won’t be as bad as it could have been. Bad news, fruit set in Merlot was very low, less than 1.5 tons/acre, with sad looking little clusters that were mostly stems with just a few berries here and there, which Mia talks about in this Merlot video.

Mia decided to double sort at the crusher, which kept only the healthy berries and excluded the rest, including any stem “jacks’. (Check out our video showing the whole process!)

Mia chose an open-top fermentor and punch down cap management to beef up the extraction just a tad, then aged it for 18 months in 40% new French oak barrels.

Mia’s tasting notes:
Raspberry/blackberry, buttery strawberry shortcake, dark chocolate and coffee, sweet nutmeg and cinnamon spice, cedar, orange liquor, slight mincemeat. In the mouth the wine has very good impact and length of flavors. Tannins are impressive in depth and quality; this one could easily age for more than a decade.

There isn’t much of this 2009 Merlot, so it’s going to sell out quickly!

2006 Selene ‘Chesler’ Red Wine (62% Cabernet Franc, 38% Merlot) (487 cases $40.00/bottle)
As a vintage, 2006 was nicely measured with normal-plus rain in the winter and even summer and fall temperatures for ripening. Fermentation and maceration totaled 20 days for the Cabernet Franc and 18 days for the Merlot. This wine was aged for 22 months in 70% new French oak barrels.

Mia’s tasting notes:
Aromas lean towards raspberry, violet, sandalwood, brown sugar, with a hint of forest floor. The initial impact and intensity of flavors in the mouth is excellent and the finish builds to an impressive concentration of extract.

2008 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon Dead Fred Vineyard(100% Cabernet Sauvignon, 148 cases $50.00/bottle)
In 2008 we had our second year of drought and the worst spring frosts since the ‘70’s. Dead Fred Vineyard suffered about 20% frost damage. Grapes were harvested the third week in October. Fermentation and maceration times totaled 20 days. This wine was aged in 90% new French oak until bottling in June of 2010.
Mia’s tasting notes: Both raspberry and blueberry lead off the aromatics, with sandalwood and sweet spice, espresso, roasted almonds covered with dark chocolate, and finishing with fragrant crushed red rose petals. The mouth has very good initial impact, intensity, texture, and length, with excellent development and integration of flavors.

Many of you have asked for older vintages of Chesler, so we have a couple of Verticals for this offer. Both include the 2007 Chesler which has not been released yet! All of these vintages are ready to drink now, but all have a long life ahead of them.

4 Bottle Vertical of Chesler – 1 bottle of 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 Chesler for $150.00 (shipping included)

6 Bottle Vertical of Chesler – 1 bottle of 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 Chesler for $225.00 (shipping included)

And finally, in case you missed it, we have our special 3 bottle Vertical of Dead Fred Cabernet. Here’s what you get for $120.00 (shipping included!) – 1 bottle each of the 2006, 2007 and 2008 Selene Dead Fred Cabernet.

Remember the 10% discount on 1 mixed case, and 20% discount on 2 mixed cases, including the Vertical Specials. Plus, 2-day Air shipping is included on all orders over $100. We will hold your order for you, (not charge your credit card) until we ship.

We can accept your orders on the BUY page of the website: www.selenewines.com , or print out the Order Form from the BUY page and fax or mail it to us, or give us a call (707) 258-8119.

Cheers,

Mia Klein and Tracy Hall

Halloween Wine!?

October 17th, 2011

We finally have good shipping weather! I’ve been shipping to most states the past two weeks, so if you have an order in, you’ll receive your wine soon!

Thanks to all our fans who ordered wine. We really appreciate the support!

Did you see the 3-pack Vertical Special we have of our Dead Fred Cabernet Sauvignon?

You could have it in time for Halloween! ($120.00 shipping included) You get 1 bottle of each:

2006 Selene Dead Fred Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (92 WS, 90 WA, 90 WE)

2007 Selene Dead Fred Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (91 WS, 91 WA, 93 WE)

2008 Selene Dead Fred Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (89 WS, 90+ WA, 90 WE)

Get those orders in!! www.selenewines.com – Skippy

Harvest 2011 Update

October 14th, 2011

There really hasn’t been much to report or talk about this harvest, so far, except for rain.

We have had rain when it was forecast, and we’ve had it when it wasn’t forecasted.

When Mia first heard about the first big rain that was coming, she called Larry Hyde right away to get on his picking schedule.

We picked the Hyde Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc on October 3rd, just before the first storm hit. (Just happens to be the same day we picked last year.)

The Blessing of the Grapes we went to at Hyde before harvest helped us bring it all in safely.

The 2011 Selene Sauvignon Blanc will be the 20th vintage of Selene Sauvignon Blanc from Hyde Vineyards!

It’s fermenting away in barrels and tastes like guava, kiwi, and pink grapefruit.

This week Mia has been tromping through vineyards checking on grapes, sugars, and vines.

We went up to Calistoga to see the Merlot at Frediani Vineyard for Selene, and to St. Helena to check on all of Bressler Vineyards grapes.

On the way up valley, it was weird to see, and hear, so many of the big wind machines running in the vineyards in broad daylight. I could see how powerful they are, with the vines really moving under their simulated wind power. Mia said it was a way to help dry out the vines and get air flowing around the grapes.

Frediani Merlot looks really good this year, with a very nice set. The rain didn’t set it back too far, so Mia has scheduled it for picking October 20th.

The Bressler Vineyards vines and grapes look really good. The Cab Franc and Merlot and Petite Verdot all taste really good. Mia has scheduled the Merlot and Petite Verdot picking for October 14th.

So far all the vineyards Mia has visited seemed to have faired well. Mountain vineyards have drained well, and the valley floor vineyards get your floor mats in your truck dirty.

This year is different for me, as I’ve never seen so much ‘green’ in the rows between the vines before harvest. It’s weird to see a cover crop or weeds growing when we would normally be irrigating. (look closely at the pictures posted above) Mia mentioned that there hasn’t been much, if any, irrigation this year.

Like every other winemaker, Mia’s hoping for nothing but sunshine until everyone gets their grapes in. – Skippy

2010 Sauvignon Blanc Release!

August 30th, 2011

Hello from Selene!

What a crazy weather year! Summer has finally arrived in Napa and we are gearing up for Harvest. With that, we are ready to release the latest Sauvignon Blanc, and we have a special 3-pack Vertical of Dead Fred Cabernet Sauvignon.

2010 Selene Sauvignon Blanc Hyde Vineyards (550 cases $28.00/bottle) The 2010 Selene Sauvignon Blanc is Mia’s favorite vintage since 2000! She says it is one of the more perfect vintages for Sauvignon Blanc. It was a summer on the cooler side of average. With few spells of particularly hot or cold temps; a moderate size crop; and an autumn featuring slow, even ripening weather that allowed a rare October pick. Some of the most flavorful and intense grapes Mia can remember. She used a new “sequential fermentation” technique on about 40% of the blend to optimize flavor, intensity, and texture. Here are her tasting notes:

Tangerine, cantaloupe, white nectarine, green mango, honeysuckle, beeswax, cardamom, and chrysanthemum. Mouthwatering, intense, viscous, and long. Yum.

Special 3 bottle Vertical of Dead Fred Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon $120.00 We haven’t released the 2008 Selene Dead Fred Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon yet, so here’s your chance to get a sneak peek. We are offering up a special 3 bottle vertical of Dead Fred. Here’s what you get for $120.00 shipping included! – 1 bottle each of the 2006, 2007 and 2008 Selene Dead Fred Cabernet.

2006 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon Dead Fred Vineyard (580 cases – Release price $50.00/bottle) Wine Spectator 92 points, Wine Advocate 90 points

2007 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon Dead Fred Vineyard (380 cases – Release price $50.00/bottle) Wine Enthusiast 93 points, Wine Spectator 91 points, Wine Advocate 91 points.

2008 Selene Cabernet Sauvignon Dead Fred Vineyard (148 cases – Release price $50.00/bottle) Wine Enthusiast 90 points, Wine Advocate 90+ points.

Finally, we still have some 2008 Merlot and 2005 Chesler in stock. If you have these in your cellar, they are tasting awesome right now:

2008 Selene Merlot Frediani Vineyard(378 cases produced $35.00/bottle) Wine Spectator 92 points.

2005 Selene ‘Chesler’ Red Wine (50% Cabernet Franc, 50% Merlot) (292 cases $50.00/bottle) Wine Spectator 92 points, Wine Advocate 92 points, Wine Enthusiast 91 points.

Remember the 10% discount on 1 mixed case, and 20% discount on 2 mixed cases! Plus, 2-day Air shipping is included on all orders over $100. We will hold your order for you, (not charge your credit card) until the weather improves for shipping.

We can accept your orders on the BUY page of the website: www.selenewines.com , or print out the Order Form from the BUY page and fax or mail it to us.

Cheers,

Mia Klein and Tracy Hall

July 19th, 2011 – Winemaker Dinner

July 5th, 2011

Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Walnut Creek, presents an evening with Winemaker Mia Klein.

~Tuesday, July 19, 2011 ~ 6:00 p.m.

This evenings pairings feature Mia’s personal label, Selene Wines, and Boyanci Wine, where Mia is the winemaker.

This is a rare chance to taste the lineup of Boyanci Wine, including the preview of their 2009 InSpire!

~First Course~

Garlic Crusted Halibut – Served over frisee salad
2009 Selene, Hyde Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

~Second Course~

Liberty Farms Duck Confit -Served over farro risotto
2008 InSpire Cabernet Sauvignon

~Third Course~

Braised Short Ribs – Served over Yukon Gold Potato cakes
2005 Selene Chesler, Cabernet Franc Blend

~Fourth Course~

Grilled Prime Center Cut Eye Rib Steak – Served with Cauliflower Puree and Sautéed Arugula
2008 BOYANCI Red Blend

~Fifth Course~

Assorted Artisan Cheeses, Dried Fruits and Chocolate Pecan Truffles
2009 InSpire Cabernet Sauvignon

Very Limited seating! Book your reservation now (925) 977-3477~ walnutcreek@ruthschris.com

Best of: Chocolate

April 22nd, 2011

Chocolate. You either love it, or live without it.

Mia and I aren’t huge dessert fans. We aren’t really candy fans either. However, a really nice peice of chocolate, with what’s left of the red wine after dinner, is a perfect dessert in our book.

We prefer dark chocolate, and if it’s over 82% that’s even better. We don’t ‘stock’ chocolate or candy, and really, we could take it or leave it.

That was before a good friend (Thanks Beth!) gifted us some chocolates from La Forêt.

If you don’t like chocolate or ‘candy’, I challenge you to try some of Wendy’s creations. Her shop is in Napa, so there is no excuse not to stop in (call first to make sure she’s there!) and get some of our favorites:

Chocolate covered Honey Comb – yep, sounds weird, yet it’s sooo good. Milk or Dark Chocolate option too! I’d be surprised if you didn’t fight over the last piece (we do).

Malted Milk Balls – Loved them as a kid! This is the adult version (no waxy choc coating on these bad boys!)

Coconut Lime Marshmallows – Wow! Do not pass these up! Chocolate covered fluffy Marshmallow square of goodness rolled in Coconut.

Almond Turtles – When Mia bought these, I said “really?” Never had a turtle I have even remotely liked. Actually I’ve spit most of them out. We fight over these too.

I could go on and on…salted caramels, pumpkin seed butter toffee and chocolate bars sporting different flavors every time we go in.

We stopped in yesterday and Wendy has made the most beautiful “Surprise Easter Eggs” – stuffed with goodies!

She even has some chocolate Bunnies! Get there, you’ll thank us later! – Skippy

Best Of: Olive Oil

April 20th, 2011

There are only three kinds of oil in the Selene pantry. Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, and Walnut Oil.

We consume a fairly decent amount of olive oil. We use it for our salad dressing, and a lot in our cooking.

Luckily we live in Wine Country and most of the wineries we know also produce awesome olive oils!

Mia and I did an olive oil tasting in Paris a few years back, and got hooked on really good olive oil and balsamic vinegar for our salad dressing.

Since then, we taste all the oils we buy or are given by friends before we use them. (yup, just like winetasting) Some taste like finishing oils, very light or sweet in flavor. While some are very strong, green/spicey flavors that we use for marinades, cooking and the occasional dressing.

After this years harvest of olives, we were gifted a bottle of Cimarossa Winery’s olive oil. (Mia is the winemaker at Cimarossa)

WOW! That was one of those moments that you knew this was not only the best you’ve had, but quite possibly the best you’ll ever have!

This immediately became our favorite oil for our salad dressing.

Cimarossa has five Italian varieties of trees planted: Leccino, Frantoio, Taggiasca, Pendolino and Coratina.

Check out these links to learn more about the Olive Oil from Cimarossa and see pictures of their orchard.

The property is amazing! Mia made a video up at Cimarossa during the 2009 Grape Harvest.

We’d love to hear of YOUR favorite olive oils, so let us know! – Skippy

Best of: Our new Topic!

April 13th, 2011

This new category in our blog will be about the ‘Best of’ something we have discovered, and want to share with you.

Mia and I have been enjoying the best of many things of late, and it’s been great to share our discoveries with our friends.

This all started last October (2010) when Mia and I started to eat a Paleo Diet.

After reading Robb Wolf’s book “The Paleo Solution” we were willing to take Robb’s 30 day challenge.

It’s now April 2011, and we have never gone back. We look and feel better than we ever have.

Along the way, we have made some awesome discoveries, found some amazing foods and recipes that are just too good to keep to ourselves, so the Best Of is born! Enjoy! – Skippy