2010 Matchbook Tempranillo, Dunnigan Hills

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VERDICT: "Go for it"
Dunnigan Hills
Tempranillo, 13.9% alc.
crewwines.com Review by Clinton Stark

Stark Insider Wine of the Week is the Matchbook 2010 Tempranillo, Dunnigan Hills located in California’s central coast.

Matchbook 2010 Tempranillo - Dunnigan Hills

Sometimes you find a gem off the beaten path.

Not from Napa, not from Sonoma, and not from Santa Barbara. How about from Dunnigan Hills?

No, this is not in Oregon – though, for some odd reason, it just feels like this wine would hearken from the state just north of California.

Matchbrook is located in the Central Valley, 30 miles east of Napa. I’m glad they sent Stark Insider a bottle of this Tempranillo, otherwise I highly doubt I would’ve encountered it anytime soon.

I know I’ve said before we don’t need no stinkin’ stories when it comes to wine. But you got to hand it to whatever marketing team put together the backgrounder. Apparently, proprietor John Giguiere liked “starting things on fire such as his father’s wheat fields.” That (goes the story) led to rockets, explosions, random fires and calls to the local fire department. But Of course! Don’t we all get into wine that way?

There’s no such fireworks in the glass here.

Instead this is a soft, tasty, and easy sipper. The blackberry is on the sweet side. Those who don’t gravitate towards wines with acidic profiles, will  likely appreciate its smooth, agreeable character.

WATCH: Historic Napa Wine Tasting in San Francisco (Video)

Even though Tempranillo is the fourth most planted grape in the world, I don’t come across it too often in California. The varietal is huge in Spain – and, in fact, I’m told the Matchbook vineyard originated with cuttings from the Pesquera region of Spain.

Matchbook Tempranillo Wine Review

Matchbook 2010 Tempranillo, Dunnigan Hills

83% Tempranillo / 10% Tannat / 7% Graciano

13.9% alc.

4,524 cases

$15, 89 pts.

Clinton Stark
Clinton shoots videos for Stark Insider. San Francisco Bay Area arts, Ingmar Bergman and French New Wave, and chasing the perfect home espresso shot 25 seconds at a time (and failing). Peloton: ClintTheMint. Camera: Video Gear