Anthony Yount, a pioneer when it comes to winemaking is filling a niche. A niche centered on producing obscure white varietals and blends. With his Alice (100% Grenache Blanc), Cabrida Blanca (34% Picpoul, 33% Grenache Blanc, 33% Chardonnay) and Rustler (100% Roussanne), his wines are unique and exciting. At just 25 years old, he is the owner and winemaker of Kinero Cellars as well as head winemaker for Denner Vineyards in Paso Robles. Kinero, loosely interpreted as “a horseless herdsman”, ties in nicely with Yount’s vision of himself not solely as a winemaker, but also a shepherd guiding his wines into the direction he sees fit. I would venture to say he is a sort of “California cowboy” working and playing in Paso Robles, an appellation sometimes referred to as the “wild wild West”.
Without the constraints of Europe, where only certain varietals are permitted in designated areas, he has crafted an unorthodox blend of Rhone and Burgundian varietals. “I like to embrace the experimental side of [winemaking] and push people’s limits” referring to his Cabrida Blanca, a wine comprised of equal parts of Picpoul, Grenache Blanc and Chardonnay. The name of this blend translates to “white goat” in Spanish, and it is surely not
a wine to be missed. Its character is splendidly unusual due to the obscurity of the blend. Picpoul, indigenous to the Rhone and Languedoc regions of France means “lip-stinger” referencing the varietal’s distinct high acid. It is generally used as a blending grape offering flavors of minerality and tropical fruits reminiscent of a piña colada. The Grenache Blanc, on the other hand, although indigenous to Spain, is the fourth most widely planted grape in France. It delivers richness and crisp acidity that can be used either used as a blending grape or stand alone. In this case, it works beautifully as a blending component where it imparts flavors and aromas of green apples and wet limestone. The most eminent varietal of this blend, Chardonnay, helps to round out the mid-palate providing the wine with body and weight. The Chardonnay imparts Meyer lemon and peach flavors that lend themselves to the juicy novelty of this exciting blend. Because if its strong backbone and ample acidity, Cabrida Blanca is well suited as a food-friendly wine or can be enjoyed on its own. If you are presented with a chance, wrangle in this impressive and unconventional blend. Anthony Yount’s Cabrida Blanca offers sufficient insight to how winemakers in Paso Robles are taking novel approaches in order to craft exceptional and lively wines. Photo by Bvalente at Smugmug