Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Wild West Wine Tasting at the Most Wanted Wine Co. – Oakdale California

On Saturday July 10th while visiting some friends in Oakdale California, the heart of the “Cowboy Capital of the World,” I visited a unique tasting room located downtown across from the park and Cowboy Museum - The Most Wanted Wine Company, a boutique winery with some mean estate grown Cabernet Sauvignon! 

Not to be confused with Oakville California in the Napa Valley, the City of Oakdale is located in Stanislaus County approximately 15 miles northeast of Modesto at the base of the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  So, if you’re headed to Yosemite or Pine Crest in the Sierra Foothills you’ll pass right through Oakdale along the way, as it is the gateway to Yosemite National Park and the Sierra Nevada foothills from Highway 120. 

Husband-and-wife owners Mark and Angela Garcia, also run Garcia Family Bail Bonds, which goes fits right in with the “Most Wanted” Cowboy theme that sets the atmosphere for their tasting room.  The 800-square-foot room is decorated in rustic Western motif, with converted wine barrels serving as tables and guns from the 1800s on the wall. And if you happen drop by on Friday night the tasting room also features live music with eclectic mix of acoustic piano, bluegrass and classic rock performers.

My friends and I tasted four wines - the 2007 Chardonnay, the 2006, 2007 and the yet to be released 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon from the Garcia Family Vineyard in Oakdale. 

The 2007 Chardonnay is from grapes sourced from the Russian River in Santa Rosa. It is a well balanced white wine with notes of lemon and grapefruit on the nose and palate with great acidity. While it has a rounded creamy feel on the palate it isn’t over oaked or overly buttery. A nice wine at $38 a bottle.

Their small production Cabernet Sauvignon comes from 8.2 acres of estate vineyard that were planted in 2000 in Oakdale and their first bottling was in 2006. Their first vintage had notes of dried fruit (a slight raisin character) but there were significant improvements in the 2007 and 2008 which they attribute to the refining of their vineyard management. The ’07 and ’08 are big, bold full bodied wines with loads of black berry, black currants, and just a hint of vanilla on the back end. The ’08 also had hints of cocoa and coffee and it seemed more layered from start to finish with more refinement in evolution in the mid palate and a prolonged finish. The 2006 and 2007 sell for $38 and the yet-to-be related ’08 was not yet priced. But I was blessed to be allowed to bring home both a bottle of the ’07 and the ’08 which did not last beyond our Sunday night barbeque – they were just too good!

At the time of my visit the tastings cost $10 per person which includes pours of all three their wines, 2007 Chardonnay, the 2006 and the 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon. 

Most Wanted Wine Co.’s tasting room is in downtown Oakdale at 154 S. Yosemite Ave., Suite B, across from the park and Cowboy Museum.  They are open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. 

For more information, call 1-209-847-9463 or go to