Lion’s Lair Dreyer Family 2012 Family Reserve White

South Africa
50% Chenin Blanc, 13% Roussanne, 13% Grenache Blanc, 12% Clairette Blanche, 12% Verdelho; 12.5% ABV
$4 at the Richmond, CA, store on 21 December

LionsLair_2012_ResWhiteThe front label of this wine struck me as dull enough, but I was really excited by the blend listed on the back label.  However, a regular customer told me that he hadn’t liked it because it was too sour.  It was with his comment in mind that I opened it to cook with last night.  Although the fruit is nicely ripe (lemon, yellow pear and melon) and blended, it is also rather sour, with a taste tending toward spoiled.  I was considering Thumbs Down.

Today, the fruit is a little more forward and that almost-spoiled character has subsided somewhat, so that it’s actually reasonably tasty, if still on the sour side.  I guess it’s okay, but not really for me.

There’s an accompanying Lion’s Lair red, blended in a southern Rhone style.  If anyone’s tried it, please let us know what you thought about it.

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7 thoughts on “Lion’s Lair Dreyer Family 2012 Family Reserve White

  1. pbarnett

    I just purchased a bottle of the Lions Lair Family Reserve White and tried it last night. It was a surprisingly nice wine with the Roussanne and Chenin Blanc really presenting themselves nicely. i suspect that the reason for the initial comments on sourness was that the bottle may have been a little too cold, which would result in a muting of the Roussane and Verdelho’s fruitier components leaving mostly the sour/acid aspects. The South African version of Chenin Blanc tends to be that way too. I have found that to be the case from a lot of tastings of those grapes and I only gave this wine a light chill (20 minutes in the fridge). Today I have pulled it out of the fridge, let it sit there and come back to a reasonable temperature, and the more it warms the better it tastes.

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Hi PBarnett and welcome. That could be. My house is rather chilly these days and I may have drunk it too cool.

      Reply
  2. EHL

    The LL “Family Reserve Red” is selling in Seattle GOs for $4 (minus the usual PNW surcharge), SRP $16.

    A pretty solid South African wine, eminently quaffable and tasty from first popping the Stelvin cap. My bottle had some funk in the background that complemented a pleasing nose and palate reflecting ripely-soft cherries and violets, was medium-bodied, with a decent, lengthy finish.

    One reviewer’s upbeat notes: “Produced by a family that started planting vines in the early 1700s, this is wonderfully South African wine. It is a bit rustic and wild, but with excellent structure and strong fruit. A blend of predominately Shiraz, with bits of Mourvedre, Grenache and Cinsault thrown in, this wine has a wonderful earthy, savory quality, with a nose of black pepper of licorice and a mouthful of rustic dark berry fruit, followed by a nice bit of acidity and tannins to give the wine good structure and a longer finish than you’d expect.”

    Nice find, for an even nicer price…

    ;}

    Reply
  3. seedboy

    I purchased a bottle of the red at the Richmond store. After a funky nose blows off it is an elegant South African take on a CduR. Nice wine. Good wines for good prices at the Richmond store right now.

    Reply

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