There are a number of “winery rows” around the Livermore Valley. One of our favorites, right on Vasco Road, has Eckert, Nottingham, Occasio, and Longevity wineries. That’s a lot of wine tasting for very little driving. On a sunny afternoon it can be a wonderful bit of road. The Occasio winery is ideally situated right in the middle of the lines of tasting rooms, so it’s no wonder that we drop in frequently.
The Occasio tasting room is a study in warm tones. Sandy paint colors and dark woods abound. There’s even a back room for more intimate members-only tastings. Acoustically bright, it is easy to hear the staff explain the background and makeup of each wine. If you peek in and see a large group, just move on down to another tasting room and come back in a while. Your ears will thank you.
We started our tasting with their 2012 Sauvignon Blanc. This is a great sipping wine, with nice mouth feel and a clean finish. A wonderful wine for pairing with turkey or cream sauces.
Next we tasted an unusual 2012 Pinot Gris. Quite fruity, with apple notes. A dry finish, especially for a Pinot Gris.
Occasio has a unique Rosé of Pinot Noir. From the Del Arroyo vineyard, this wine is a 50/50 blend of
wood and stainless preparations. We tasted a lot of fruit, even hints of strawberry. Definitely not your father’s rosé.
We moved onward to a truly heavenly 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon. With an aroma of leather and smoke, this wine just begs to be paired with a nicely BBQd tri-tip. Great tannins and a clean acidic finish. Faint notes of elderberries and cranberries. A real favorite!
We tasted their 2011 Petite Sirah next. This bright little wine started with a mushroom nose, followed on with a vibrant balance of fruit and finished with spice and smoke. Nicely done!
Our tasting concluded with a lovely 2010 Merlot. Low in tannins (yay!) this wine was smooth and fruit forward. A nice warm merlot for these cooling evenings.
So another nice tasting at Occasio. Great wines, soothing décor and friendly staff. See you again soon!
About the Author: John grills a mean steak and is always in the market for another wine fridge. Believes that if a winery has more than 10 employees, it's probably too big. Buys wine faster than he drinks it, but who cares?