A true vinous pioneer, Husch planted Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Gewurztraminer. This was at a time when few thought the cool valley had any viticultural potential.
The Oswald Family bought the winery in 1979. They make a great Chenin Blanc and late harvest Gewurztraminer. Tasting the 2003 Chenin Blanc reminded me of the better Vouvrays I have tried. Vouvray is a cool area in the Loire Valley of France that defines the varietal.
The 2004 Gewurztraminer was methodically fermented to let this vibrant grape’s natural characteristics shine through. It has a touch of residual sugar in it. (0.8%)
However, these two offerings are just the tip of the iceberg of the numerous wines made by the Oswalds. Production also includes Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chenin Blanc, Muscat, Merlot, Carignane and Zinfandel.
Husch Vineyards is able to produce such diversity due to the fact that they either own or lease several vineyards throughout Mendocino County. Jeff Brinkman is the winemaker and Al White is the vineyard manager. Their wines are loved by the critics and their 2003 Pinot Noir recently received 90 points from Wine Enthusiast. This is quite impressive for a wine that costs around $20.