Young Livermore Winemaker Makes A Big Statement With His Signature Designate Cabs

In recent years we have seen a big push by our winemakers in the Livermore AVA to regain the title Livermore once had as the original, premier American Viticultural Area in the United States.  Jeff and Colin Cranor of Nottingham Cellars have made it there  mission to do just that.  They have a passion for the Livermore Valley, which can be seen in the name they chose for their winery, Nottingham.  This name was the original name for Livermore back in the mid 19th century.  This quote from the Nottingham Cellars web site truly speaks to their mission:

“Nottingham Cellars sits at the gateway to Livermore Valley’s wine country. We are a small boutique winery dedicated to producing great wines at a great value. We take our name from the history pages of this long-standing, famed wine region. Nottingham was, for a period of time, the original name of Livermore in the mid-19th century. It is this rich history from which we draw inspiration for everything we do at Nottingham Cellars…”

In 2011 Nottingham Cellars won 28 medals at four of the nations top wine competitions.  This is an impressive feat, but true wine lovers know that while winning awards at wine competitions is a great honor, the true test is what the public thinks of your wine.  It’s all about the taste.  The Cranors know this and they take the extra steps needed to make premier wine that the public will love.

The newest lineup at Nottingham is the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Vineyard Designate series.  For this series, Collin has chosen to source his Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from three Livermore vineyards known for cultivating excellent fruit: Casa De Vinas, Del Arroyo Vineyard, and Wisner Vineyard.  These wines have all scored well with the wine magazines, as was shown with the recent 90 point score the Casa De Vinas Cabernet receive from the Wine Enthusiast Magazine.

This weekend, Nottingham Cellars opened their doors to their wine club members for an exclusive, private tasting of their three, soon to be released, Vineyard Designate Cabernets.  With the expectation that these three Cabernets drew, it was no wonder that the turn out was so large.  Each wine was paired with delicious hors d’oeuvres and there were multiple cheeses and breads to complement the wines as well.  I loved each of the Cabs.  They each had a distinct Cabernet flavor, but were noticeably different from one another.  In tasting these wines there was no doubt as to why they have been scoring so well.

These wines were all limited production and the wine club members had the first opportunity to purchase them.  Hopefully there will be enough left for the non-club member to take some home too.  If you haven’t yet been to Nottingham Cellars, the time is now.


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