During a recent trip to Denver, I decided to bring my daughter with me to Creekside. We lunched before our visit, and only planned on sampling the wines. I have to say I was skeptical about the quality of the local Colorado wines, and have a pretty high expectation from years of drinking European and California wines while visiting those regions. As we walked in the door, we were greeted by the winemaker, Michelle. It was a busy lunch time, and we decided to stand at the bar and sample a few flights of the wines, both white and red.
I was immediately impressed with the education and the passion that Michelle shared about her wines and her thinking behind their fermentation. She has a great palate, and does not believe in stainless steel fermentation! Yay! She is a believer in the Old World Style, and with her reds, has embraced the Bordeaux varietals! In fact, she believes so much in them, she is fermenting them to stand on their own! So many times they are only valued for what they can contribute to a blend- not so with gutsy Michelle! These wines have won medals all over the place, and I can sing their praises as well!
Between my daughter and I, we sampled two flights and decided to sit on the beautiful patio when some of the lunch crowd moved out. Over beautiful Bear Creek we had the cream of artichoke soup and a cheese tray (we didn't come to eat)! I liked all the whites and reds, but my favs were the Petite Sirah and the Cab Franc. My daughter had two glasses of the Temperanillo. An hour later (we didn't want to leave!) Michelle brought out a barrel draw from the Petite Verdot (another red in oak) and it will be luscious when it is bottled this fall. This opinion comes from a Carmenere, Malbec and Monastrell fan. These reds are a treasure!
It is rare anymore to find ANY American wine, red or white, that has any time in oak. We like fresh, new and instant. But a great wine, from MY experience, does not come quickly. Take a wine grape, lay it in oak, yes, OAK! and allow the life to come forth from the DNA of that grape. The Chardonnay grape screams OAK! Michelle and I agree on this!
I toured the back, I saw the barrels (how about that Malbec back there!) and I can't wait to return to this winery.
In closing- what spoke volumes to me were the stems we sampled the wine in. No plastic here. No "one glass, pour it out, and repour another wine in." Uh-uh. Any wine enthusiast knows the importance of a clean and large bowl to sniff, swirl, and sip. It is here at
Some visit for the great fresh food, some stop for a convenient business lunch with a co-worker. Others want an afternoon on the patio. I wanted a great winery and exceptional wines. I wasn't disappointed.
Since this winery can't ship to Florida, I will be back in June, my only winery stop. My husband has made me promise to bring him along for the afternoon, and I will be buying a case of those wonderful Old World Style Reds! Go, Michelle!