Deep ruby color; red fruits, pepper, cassis, pepper on the nose; plum, mix of red and dark fruits, meat, tobacco, spice on the palate.
Dry; subdued tannins balanced by excellent acidity for a red (3.58 pH). Medium-plus body. This is everything we could get our hands on blend of 30% cabernet sauvignon, 20% zinfandel, 15% malbec, 20% petite sirah, 5% merlot, 5% carignan, 5% grenache from vineyards in the Anderson Valley, Sonoma County, Napa Valley, and Mendocino County. The result is red fruits galore framed by oak. Aged in French wood for 16 months. The cab and petite sirah were aged in 40% new; all the rest 100% new.
Banshee asserts this wine is “made with our house philosophy (think bright flavors, focus, energy, good with food), with the overreaching mandate that it is absolutely delicious.” They succeed in making a fun, easy drinker even if it is hard to find a direction this is going other than being a tasty red. That’s what they said they were going for, and it is what they got. Major tastes—plum, cherry, blackberry. 14.7% ABV
Banshee traces its roots to a bar in the Dogpatch neighborhood of San Francisco. Three friends—Steve Graf, Baron Ziegler and Noah Dorrance from the Midwest and East Coast—shared a passion for wine and a lifelong dream of owning their own winery. They do not own land but have lease agreements with vineyards to provide the fruit. Ross Cobb is the winemaker.
With money borrowed from friends and family, the proprietors made eight barrels of Sonoma Coast pinot noir. Their goal was to make quality pinot at an affordable price. By 2013 they were able to open a tasting room in downtown Healdsburgh. The winery asserts it is: “a refreshing and relaxed take on your typical tasting room. It’s more like hanging out at their house and sharing some wine with family, rather than bellying up to an ever-crowded tasting bar.”
The website continues: “Our main focus for Pinot Noir is on the cool, rugged, coastal areas of the far Western Sonoma Coast. Each vineyard has a unique combination of a specific oceanic influence, soil type, elevation, age and exposure but the common thread is that they allow us to pursue Pinot that achieves power without weight. They allow the grapes to express a certain transparency. They highlight a wide range of flavors other than just fruit. Forest floor, pine, tea, mushroom, spice, minerals.”
Banshee Mordecai Proprietary Red 2018 has big, ripe red and black fruit coating your palate with parade of rich flavors. Slightly rustic, nice easy drinker. Good texture. Mélange of California’s Bordeaux and Rhône varieties from around the general Napa area. Pair with beef; lamb; veal; poultry; excellent with comfort foods—meatloaf, pizza, chicken fried steak, spaghetti and meatballs, hamburgers and sliders. $19-25