Established in 1917, this winery resides in the heart of an urban Los Angeles; an area that reminds one of something out of a Schwarzenegger movie set in a waste land of some war ravaged urban, industrial area. A cement business is one of its neighbors and I felt like I should put a hazmat suit on before getting out of my car. Sitting in the midst of a forest of industrial chain link fences, the winery itself is charming and a bit of an oasis in an otherwise heinous part of the city.
The Maddelena Restaurant—named for the matriarch of the Riboli family-- is on site and we enjoyed a modest repast of appetizer plates of anti-pasta with a couple glasses of this winery’s wine.
I had the Syrah 2002 which sells for about $20 a bottle in the on site store and was actually quite flavorful bursting with currants, good fruit, a decent balance and a ton of vanilla, both on the nose and the mouth. If you enjoy vanilla in your wine—and I do—you’d love this. My wife had their Merlot which wasn’t nearly as powerful and was rather dull. Both wines were served way too warm—a shame for a winery—but they gave you a generous pour at least.
I have never seen this family’s wines anywhere I have ever been but looking at their web site they do distribute coast to coast though somewhat limited.
Still, spending the time with my daughter and my wife on a beautiful Southern California day, I can’t complain! Raise a glass—I know we are!