While great wine often accompanies the most important celebrations, it is not often that a wine is cause for celebration in its own right. The recent release of Inwood Estates Vineyards’ 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE was indeed a cause for celebration, because Inwood believes this special wine has presented itself as the measurement against which all current Texas wines must now hold themselves.
The RESERVE release party was a fitting reflection of the wine itself. The experience began as guests arrived at the winery and were greeted by the inspiring flamenco guitar talents of musician “Sam E.” These stirring tunes combined with the smell of the oak and wine to create an atmosphere of excitement around everyone who came. For the last month, the 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE has created quite a buzz, and the several hundred guests to attend its unveiling did not leave disappointed.
In order to have an understanding of this new wine, guests were invited to first taste the original 2008 “Cornelious” before tasting the 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE. Winemaker Dan Gatlin explained that, “The small, but very high-quality 2008 vintage yielded the first ever “Cornelious” RESERVE. Like its predecessor, the RESERVE is also 100% Tempranillo, but there ends the similarity. The regular “Cornelious” has brilliant red-fruit character exuding bright cherries, raspberries and strawberries with a medium tannin structure which contributes to its fruit-forward enjoyment. The RESERVE has dark, if not very dark overtones of the blackest cherries coupled with thickly layered tannins delivering a super-soft and velvety finish. Where one is bright, the other is dark.”
While it tastes amazing now, it is still considered a young wine that will drink and age well. Inwood builds their wines with the integrity to age, and the structure of the “Cornelious” RESERVE will enable it to cellar nicely, well beyond the year 2020. Mr. Gatlin’s confidence in this wine is apparent when he expresses that, “The RESERVE is an Investment Grade wine which should be cellared. In the next 5 years, I believe this could well be regarded as the best wine ever produced in Texas.”
Once guests had their palates blown away by this new statement of Texas “terroir,” they were invited to join Assistant Winemaker Marc Moberg at the bar to experience Inwood’s other estate wines. Here, Marc assisted Mr. Gatlin in answering questions about the Reserve and about what makes Inwood so different than most other Texas wineries. “Inwood Estates refuses to cut corners,” says Marc. “Every drop of wine is made by hand here in Texas, and is given the opportunity to age naturally in the way that wine has been produced for the last 8,000 years.” Marc explains that, “Only after we give our wines the time and freedom necessary to display their true potential do we release them to the public.”
As all who attended the “Cornelious” RESERVE release party learned, the winemaker’s hard work is evident in every glass. The 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE has made quite the splash, selling more than 30 cases in its first two weeks alone. For a winery that produces a mere 1500 cases a year on average for all of their wines combined, this response is a very big deal.
Those who want to get their hands on some 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE should contact the winery now. Only about 70 cases currently remain, and it is expected to sell out within the next few months.
Inwood Estates Vineyards’ release of their 2008 “Cornelious” RESERVE is an exciting indication of the amazing developments in Texas wine. It’s time to grab a bottle and join the celebration.