by Daniel Kelada, Wine Writer, Texas Wine and Trail; Founding Director of the Texas Wine Journal
The Texas Wine Review is a weekly column that aims to provide insight and reviews of Texas wines using a professional evaluation approach while encouraging the discovery and enjoyment of wines from across the State of Texas.
Producer: Lewis Wines
Appellation: Texas High Plains
Other: Bingham Family Vineyards
Wine Type: Dry White
Varietals: 100% Viognier
Total Production: 328 cases
Date of Review: 1/17/2014 Time: 9:00am Glassware: ISO
Quality of Style: 5 Drinkability: 5 DK 90/100
Visually the wine is a bright straw with a light depth of color. It reflects light very well and is lively in the glass. There is no sign of maturity or other observable characteristics.
The initial impression of the wine is that it is pleasant. Upon further inspection it is apparent that the wine is made in a very fresh style with little manipulation of the fruit during processing. The nose is pretty perfect and inviting with noticeable smells of honeysuckle, acacia, orange blossom and gardenia to round out the florals. On the fruit side of things I pick up on pitted fruits such as apricots and peaches. I also get some savory elements of fennel seed and green peppercorn.
On the palate the wine is dry leaning towards medium-dry, with smooth but sufficient alcohol and is framed by a lively acid structure. The flavors are pleasant and noticeable. A continuation of white florals and pitted fruits continue on the palate along with mint. The finish is more tropical with guava and tangerine leading the way with over ripe kiwi and under ripe banana in the background. The palate confirms what the smell evaluation gives me, which is that the wine was picked at a perfect time to maintain freshness, fruit, and acid that results in a wine that is not overtly waxy, viscous or dominated by alcohol. The wine is developed, balanced and has a medium to medium-full body.
This wine is an expression of what Viognier should be like when it is picked early and not overly processed to allow the fruit to shine; and it does very well. The only thing I wish the wine had more of, and where I think more bottle time will help, is on the finish; it falls a little short at the time of this evaluation. Other than that, the wine is perfect.
Drink: Now Through 2016
Complete Evaluation (click here for pdf attachment)
Daniel is a Executive Sommelier, Master Candidate and Senior Wine Instructor with the International Wine Guild and through the Guild teaches accredited wine certifications and seminars in Texas and around the country. He has a background in BioChemistry from the University of Texas at Austin and in 2008, he founded GUSTO Tastings, a wine education company with expertise in consulting and event curation. He is a founding partner in Vinovium Partners, a Texas négociant that specializes in premium wines on tap from Texas and abroad. Daniel is also the Tasting Director for the Texas Wine Journal, a subsidiary of the Texas Wine and Food Consortium.