Be Sure to Try These Current and Soon-to-be-Released Wines from Monarcha, Palencia and Calvario

Victor Palencia is rolling out his new releases for 2021 with an always terrific selection of wines for a wide range of wine enthusiasts. Palencia and Monarcha wines can be ordered on line ( or purchased at either of his two tasting rooms in Kennewick or West Richland, Washington.

Winemaker Victor Palencia

Monarcha Winery 2020 Rosé Wine – This wine is gorgeous on all counts, from the eye-catching frosted bottle to the striking shade of jewel-like garnet Syrah within it. Fresh field strawberries lead off, with additional flavors of Jolly Rancher watermelon and crisp green melon throughout. There’s also some nice, steely minerality to accentuate the big splash of finishing acidity. It makes a great starter wine – especially during the appetizer course – and it pairs perfectly with prosciutto, which really brings out the wine’s fruit component and, perhaps, a suggestive hint of sweetness.

Monarcha Winery 2017 Sangiovese – Hints of baking spice and wild berries on the nose lead to juicy currant and raspberry flavors with a touch of earthy, dried Bing cherry on the extreme finish. This is a delicious New World-style Sangiovese that showcases the varietal’s excellent acidity while nicely balancing it with a generous helping of red fruit-forwardness.

Monarcha Winery 2016 Carmenere – Black pepper and nutmeg aromatics carry over to the initial taste, with dried black plum and blueberry flavors to follow. Pleasant finishing notes of tobacco leaf and sweet cedar are coupled with beautifully integrated tannins. It’s a natural to pair with prime rib, bison burgers or a New York strip steak.

Palencia Winery 2020 Albariño – Big lemon zest and green field grass aromas jump from the glass with generous kiwi, citrus, and key lime flavors on the palate. The racy, laser-sharp finish is highlighted with mouth-watering stone fruits of nectarine and white peach. It’s a vibrant and sassy white wine that should pair perfectly with a variety of fresh shellfish or practically anything sauced in cream or butter. This amazing wine will be available to wine club members first before its release to the public in April, 2021.

Palencia Winery 2018 Grenache – Incredibly complex and ever-evolving aromatics of leather, wet stone, black pepper, violets, and graham cracker start you off. There’s a dense, yet plush entry of Italian plum and cherry fruit, with a flash of leaner, brighter red currant and licorice on the finish accompanied by floral accents. Take a bow, Victor Palencia, for this stellar Washington State Grenache that is both pretty and pretty delicious.

Palencia Winery 2018 Casa Amarilla Grenache/Syrah/Mourvedre – This beautifully crafted trio of Rhone varietals opens with gentle smoky, peppery aromatics before the 60-percent portion of Grenache takes center stage with its base of luscious red and black cherry fruit. The Syrah and Mourvedre components really come through on the persistent, layered finish that suggests crème brȗlée, toasted walnut, baking spices, and chocolate crème.

Palencia Winery 2017 El Viñador Syrah – There’s a whiff of crushed greens, sweet tobacco, and dark chocolate for openers, with flavors of spiced black cherry, espresso, and black currant on the palate. Slightly pliable tannins give the wine a bold, yet elegant quality while suggesting that another five to ten years of cellaring time will make this gem-of-a-wine even better.

Palencia Winery 2016 El Viñador Petit Verdot and Calvario Cellars 2016 Petit Verdot – Both of these wines were sourced from Washington’s Wahluke Slope AVA, and the temptation to set them up side-by-side to see how they compare is irresistible…and fun.  It will be worth the wait to see how these two Petit Verdots mature and develop added depth and character over the next seven to ten years.

The Calvario, produced by newcomer winemaker Noel Perez, displays gentle field flower aromatics along with brighter red currant and pomegranate flavors to lead off. Black raspberry fruit moves in towards the finish, capped with chewy tannins and a flourish of orange zest.

The El Viñador comes across as bigger and bolder with green herb and alfalfa aromas, blackberry, black currant, and Marion berry fruit and finishing notes of molasses and freshly-brewed coffee. It’s a powerhouse wine, big on texture but not without a sultry/seductive quality that slightly softens the varietal’s signature tannins.

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