Darby Winery tasting room in 2006. Winemaker Darby English utilizes old-world wine making techniques crafting bordeaux blends and rhone varietals. Their wine is carefully and purposefully developed to create an elegant and balanced finish. The winery produces approximately 4000 cases annually, and has a strong commitment to its clubs members. I was delighted to taste through some of their current and more limited releases.
2021 Rousanne Stillwater Creek. Canned pears and peaches on the nose. Drinks dry, lemon, nectarines. Smooth, fresh and light on the palate, with a clean finish. $27. Score 93. 2021 Grenache White pepper, stems, bark. Light bodied, black tea, and sage, cranberries. Herbacious and savory. Drying tannins. Very food friendly. Interested to see how this ages. $45. Score 91. 2021 Flipside 58% Syrah, 35% Mourvedre, 7% Grenache. Complex aromas of earth, stems and leather on the nose. Layers of dark and red fruit, cigar, black tea, savory herb, slightly grippy tannins. $40. Score 91. 2020 Chaos Tobacco leaf, leather aromas. Medium body of currants, dried herbs, coffee and touch of vanilla. Long pleasant finish. $38. Score 92.
Darby Winery is a hidden gem amongst the bigger Hollywood District tasting rooms. Their minimalistic and old-world techniques shined through with clear intention. The 2020 Chaos delivered an excellent cab-dominant bordeaux blend, and the 2021 Rousanne is a hit for the summer. Furthermore, their prices are totally reasonable.