Review: Wines of Ettore, 2023 Releases

As the proprietor of an organic winery in Mendocino’s Sanel Valley, winemaker Ettore Biraghi prides himself on applying old-world Italian techniques to his offerings, placing an emphasis on Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot varietals across 35 acres of vineyards. Today, we have a look at three of his most recent releases.

2019 Ettore Cabernet Sauvignon Signature – Well-balanced and expressive throughout, with very sultry notes of plum and raspberry quickly emerging, and subtle hints of cassis and graphite contributing elegance and nuance towards the end. There are just enough tannins present to keep things from getting too sweet, and the earthier elements on the long finish provide balance throughout.

2019 Ettore Chardonnay Reserve – 100% Chardonnay, aged 18 months in French oak barrels, but the wood influence never overpowers, balanced by an effusive blend of pineapple and mango. It captures a classic Chardonnay profile, delivering floral elements, fresh fruit, light acidity, and a touch of mint on the finish. It takes a bit of time to come into its own, but with some patience presents beautifully. One to enjoy at the end of a long day.

2018 Ettore Rosso – A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot (percentages were not specified on the technical sheet), with bold notes of blackberry, clove, and anise both on the nose and palate. Elegant in structure with a touch of chocolate and licorice rope on the finish which gives this some enhanced character. A bit short on the finish, though, and could possibly stand a few years in cellar to unlock its fullest potential.


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