Exploring up in the town of Murphys in Calaveras County is always a fun experience. I recently had the opportunity to visit Hatcher Winery. Matthew Hatcher has been located here since 2002 and as is both the owner and winemaker. One of his desires is to use only “mountain fruit” from the foothills. This includes Calaveras, Amador and El Dorado Counties.
Another unique trait of Matthew’s is matching the barrel with the wine. In their daily offerings you will find French, Hungarian and even American oak barrels fermenting his various creations and varietals.
On the day I visited the tasting room, I was pleasantly taken by surprise on two standout wines. By the way, it is a “sub-terrarium tasting room” one level below the street. The first wine was their 2011 Parcel 17 from a vineyard in Salt Springs Valley. It is a varietal made up of Spanish varietals of Mazuelo, Monastrell and Granciano. It is aged eighteen months in French Oak barrels. While the “dark red fruit with aromas of blackberries and cola” it is actually a medium body wine and light. This is a perfect summer drinking wine to augment Pinot’s, Grenache’s, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay’s. For twenty-eight dollars a provocative alternative.
The other outstanding wine was their 2010 Malbec. Again, typically rich, tart and having a pronounced cherry flavors, it is as the notes described provides “aromas of pomegranate, forest floor, pine needles and fresh rain” – a very descriptive narrative. It is a very good wine and worthy of a twenty-nine purchase.
Many other wines are available for your enjoyment, but these two rang true to their varietals. Hatcher Winery has many events including a host of winemaker dinners which I have put on my schedule. One last comment, check out their clothing accessories for that special person.
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