91 Callaway Coastal 1999, California, Reserve Viognier
The nose of Callaways new Viognier displays subtle spice and herbs woven through tropical fruit. On the palate its velvety smooth and dry, with citrus peel and tropical fruit. Excellent balance and long, fruit and mineral finish.
91 Bonterra 1998, North Coast, Viognier
Bonterra makes great Viognier year after year. The 98 is full-bodied and velvety smooth, dry yet intensely fruity, with papaya and tangerine flavors, crisp acidity, and good aromatics. Unlike so many Viogniers, this one has only moderate alcohol.
87 Jade Mountain 1999 Paras Vineyard, Napa Valley Viognier
When I first tasted this wine I was unimpressed. But with aeration it opened up and showed full-bodied peach and apricot character wrapped in a velvet robe. Full-bodied, it demands food to temper its excesses. Perfect with risotto.
89 Sierra Vista 1999, Eldorado, Viognier
While I prefer the 98 (see article on Viognier), Sierra Vistas 99 has its own charms, and since Viognier develops quite a lot in its first year in the bottle, it may yet rise to the heights of its predicessor. Just a month after bottling (at the time of this tasting) the 99 shows a lot of citrus character, while on the palate intense mineral notes and light spice give it some complexity and great length. The texture is creamy on the mid-palate, crisp and acidic on the finish.
84 Phillips Vineyards 1999, California, Viognier
Exhibiting the strengths and weaknesses of Viognier tropical fruit sensations, followed by a dry, medium-bodied palate, and a hot, alcoholic finish (no surprise, as its 15.7% alcohol).