From La Nouva Cuchina (Fall 1992)Cover   |   1   |   2   |   3   |   4   |   5

Lista Del Vino (Wine you can buy)

Each Spring and Fall, Cameron releases a new set of wine and, as the winemaker, I am expected to drone on regarding the attributes of each of these products. But why should you believe me? Consider that I have a financial stake in this thing. It’s not like I’m going to say “Well, the latest release smells like urine but I don’t think you’ll die from it!” Instead, I would say something like “an interesting aroma sure to generate conversation among your guests.” Having been recently inspired by the honesty and candor of our presidential candidates, I decided to take a new and fresh approach in describing my wines for this Fall’s Release. I have gone to my cellar crew–temporary, part-time employees, the people who actually make the wine at Cameron, get no credit for it and are paid minimal substandard wages; in short, real people (ie Perot volunteers). Here is what Matt Sage and Linda Clark have to say:


The vineyard at the winery has an electric fence running around it to keep the deer out. After consuming a fair quantity of wine one evening, John and Teri and Bill and Julia hit upon the name Clos Electrique. The Pinot noir was planted in 1985 and many of you have seen it struggle along. It is a blend of all the clones that Bill and John could come up with including some very low-yielders gleaned off of Bill’s vineyard. The poor soil and choice of clones makes this a “winemaker’s vineyard” aka accountant’s nightmare. In 1989, they pulled less than a quarter ton per acre off of it; a half ton per acre was taken in both 1990 and 1991. This is nuts but you won’t find a more intense Pinot noir outside of the Cote de Nuit. One barrel of wine produces 25 cases and that’s what we got.

Matt says this certainly puts the noir back into Pinot noir. Linda says it smells like when you’re making blackberry jam but doesn’t like it “tastes like a claret!” Matt:”I like that hit of ethyl acetate when you first open the bottle; it reminds me of my life on the streets of Sao Paulo when I was sniffing glue!” Matt loves it licorice, mint, strong coffee aromas; full long wine.


This vineyard makes a little more sense; Bill pulled around a ton and a half per acre in 1990 which is still pretty paltry yield but it makes great wine. This was beautiful fruit; we had to eat our share quickly before the crusher gobbled it up. The wine was fermented largely with wild yeasts present on the grapes and floating around the cellar. It was aged in small French oak cooperage for nearly 2 years (bottled this past July—260cases). Linda thinks it smells like toilet water (however, she seemed positive when she said it, which may be more of a statement on Linda); Matt responded with “It’s the grapes!” Linda “I like this better than the Clos Electrique; sorry, but that’s just how I feel! I really do like this wine.” Spicy, lavendar-base perfume, cinnamon; long finish but softer than the Clos Electrique.


Incorporating the techniques of Lafon and Francois Jobard, this wine sure had its share of time in the barrel (19 months) sur lees. Upon tasting the wine for the first time, Matt’s eyes lit up and a smile crept across his face: “I’m not sure what I think; I really need to take a case home to try it with several dishes.” Linda was more restrained but then Linda is always more restrained, “This has more fruit and butter than usual. I like this wine but then I always like your Chardonnays. Can I try another glass, this some seems to have emptied!” Resiny, toasty, pears and apples; full boddied with a long finish.

Journey back in time with us and browse the last 20 or so years of mailers, newsletters, and video.

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