EP 994 Tasting with Tim and Carrisa Mondavi from Continuum Part 2

The concluding part, including the tasting of the 2006 and 2008 Continuum with Tim and Carissa Mondavi. Gary, Tim, and Carissa speak more about the California wine business, vineyards, and winemaking.

Wines tasted in this episode:

2006 Continuum
2008 Continuum

Links mentioned in todays episode.

Latest Comment:

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luca bercelli


Sorry, but this guest was without doubt the most boring person ever to appear on WLTV. A huge figure in the wine world but god, he could bore me to death, and all of the good information that he had was lost in his drab and domineering delivery. His daughter might well have been more entertaining and approachable, but unfortunately daddy didn’t let her say a word. Even GV tried to have his say half way through but pretty much gave up when Tim started droning on again and drowning him out. I didn’t think it would be possible to make such a great product sound so boring – but I was wrong. if he mentioned ‘stirring the lees’ once more I would’ve thrown my laptop out the window. Thank god this guest wasn’t on one of the early episodes because he would surely have put me off from watching and commenting on every single one, thus denying me hours and hours of tip top entertainment.

Tags: cabernet, california, napa, red, review, Video, wine, wines

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  • Anonymous

    QOTD: Well I’m fortunate enough to live in the Shadow of the Santa Cruz Mountains and like you there’s another winery that’s laser beam focused on terroir – Rhys. They have several vineyards all with very different geology ( high iron / shales / sands / rocks of different types….). It’s nice to see the different expression in the different vineyards – they are vastly different ( the treatment in the winery is very similar with all the vineyards – all whole cluster…). With one vineyard it’s great to taste a nice wine, but it’d be nice for you to explore for another place to plant ( might take a while to get up to speed, but with a name like continuum this could be a generational wine ).


  • I guess what I’m trying to say is not to force estate bottlings if a winery could create something better by pulling from an additional source or two.

  • Anonymous

    Oh God, I think that I may make some enemies today. I hope that I’m off base here but Tim came across to me over the hour as a man who wanted to tell you how it is. Pedantic, patrician are words that kept floating through my mind. Compare his style to, say, Kermit Lynch. I would kill to spend time talking wine with Kermit but would probably pass on listening about wine from Tim. Again, I have the utmost respect for the Mondavi family contributions to the wine world, I just wasn’t enthralles by Tim’s delivery style.

  • Borrrrrrrrrrrrring……

  • Leatherpalate

    QOTD- I find it absolutely essential. Tim, aren’t you a Shad fisherman out there in NorCal?
    Heard that from a old Shadman. Thanks for being on the show!


  • QOTD – Who fricken cares.

    Before I’d had any ‘real’ Mondavi wines I’d read the gossip book about the family ‘House of Mondavi’ and had this colored view of them as a bunch of rich, vain, whatever, vinocelebs.

    Then I had a 1994 Mondavi Reserve Cab.

    After that, they could have been the Manson family plus child molesting cousins and I wouldn’t have given it a second thought, at the end of the day it’s what’s in the bottle that matters.

  • QOTD – I feel like a wine that isn’t estate grown is missing a big piece of it’s soul. I feel as if it’s a fake to a degree. So YES, it means a lot to me.

  • Anonymous

    Really enjoyed this episode….made me want to open up a decent bottle of wine……even though it’s only 8:30am in my part of the world!
    Q’sOTD: I have worked in small family owned single estate wineries right up to conglomerate owned megawineries. I know which ones put in the most effort/love/commitment. As such I do tend to look for estate wines. It doesn’t always make them great wines though.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD – No doubt that this brings an element of authenticity to the wine. You get fully what you are paying for and for what you are expecting.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD – No doubt that this adds authenticity to the wine. You get what you are expecting, as most people assume that is what they are getting when they buy a bottle of wine.

  • Nick

    Tim dominated the conversation way too much. I’m sure Carissa could bring us some insightfull info but i can see his passion and thrive so i’m all for it. Next time though he should learn that women got right to speak as well.

    1) I prever Estate over conglomerates because they put more manhours into the wine (vineyard etc) so most of the time they deliver better quality

  • Anonymous

    Very interesting show. If Tim had said “above the clouds” one more time I would have driven to Napa and TP’d the vineyard this weekend.

    Other than that, I found his insight interesting, although not letting his daughter get a word in edgewise wasn’t cool. I think Gary probably felt bad for her at one point.

    QOTD: “Single vineyard”, “estate”, and “reserve” wines to me are more about branding a price point than quality.

    This reminds me of an old saying – Sonoma makes wine, Napa makes auto parts.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: A- At this point in my wine drinking experience, single estate wine is not too important to me. Honestly, I want wine that tastes good. However that comes about is okay with me. B- I also kind of don’t care about how many people are involved in the process. There are great wines from labels with teams of all different sizes.

    This was just great. We heard a lot about continuum, but wr learned about wine across the board. Magnificent in every way! Thank you Mondavi family and thank you my dude for your hard work and dedication to us.



  • Anonymous

    Interesting to see Tim Mondavi after having seen Mondovino. It gives you something to think about.

    QOTD: Single Estate makes me a little more comfortable with a winemaker and his/her wines. The biggest thing for me, however, is that the winemaker is using his own fruit to make the wine instead of buying from other farmers who really know the vineyards.

  • Anonymous

    Accountability equates to user experience quality, Tim. You posed the question, you must understand that todays wine world is a two-way street if you are to retain your customer base. You can charge $140 in a good year, you must self-correct to something less than that in an off-year. Otherwise, you lose many of us who are no longer willing to pay for the label. That requires a more realistic pricing strategy that, I think, long-term customers would embrace.

  • Anonymous

    This 2-part episode was AWESOME! I really enjoyed it.

    QOTD: I respect what they are doing as wine makers……I just wish I could afford it! Haha!

    Thank you Gary and the Mondavi family.

    God bless you

  • awesome guests! QOTD: yes it does matter and I am actually more likely to buy if it is a single estate. The other thing that I like that they are thinking about is the single wine. I really like it when it is just one wine from a vineyard. It just seems to me that they concentrate more on quality when they do that. So Gary, can you loan me about $150.00 so I can get a bottle? CKC here so show me some love!

  • Alexandre-CF

    That was awesome!!!!
    I loved the show.

    QOTD: o yes, single estate it’s more personal, more about the winemaker, the family and the history behind the wine. And it’s really more about the qualit.

  • So glad the wines were good.

    TIM’s QOTD: extremely important and not at all silly, if the wine reflects the commitment, then I’m happy to buy and consume (regardless of price).
    If there are more wines, it could be a good thing, to compare the different aging and characteristics of the particular soil they come from.

    Carissa didn’t get to ask a question, so no answer there…

    Good show GV, absolutely charming people.

  • Great guests! I enjoyed the show. A lot less actual tasting going on but hey, it’s Friday.

    QOTD: A single estate for a wine of this type is impressive to few and irrelevant to many others. The U.S. just isn’t the same as France. It’s one thing if the wine is being exported to France. The U.S. consumer isn’t as knowledgeable as say the French consumer. A single estate wine is like saying you got an A+ on your fourth grade spelling test. It matters but at the same time it doesn’t really matter. I do believe a small group of people truly do care about such things as a single estate vineyard…and a large majority don’t. What really matters is how much you care about your consumer (the end user), not how much they care about you.

  • t4drman

    QOTD: Without question Estate rules. To Carissa’s question: Maybe even more important is knowing that the caretakers have worked those vines continuously for years to bring forth the most defining aspects and excellence that the winery has to offer.

  • Anonymous

    Great show! Loved it. Tim is such and Icon, was a little awkward with Carrissa trying to fit into the conversation…but I get it. Wouldn’t be a continuum without her. Gary your mind works so quickly please allow your guests to finish answering your question before you fire off another one. enough of winey me.

  • Anonymous

    The queen’s speech . Does Clarissa have a speech impediment , the poor girl couldn’t get a word in , shame on you two guys , very rude . Mariano in Montreal

  • Anonymous

    Show should have been titled the Queen’s speech . Poor girl couldn’t get a word in , does she have a speech impediment ?

  • Anonymous

    Great 2 part episode.
    QOTD: I have honestly never purchased a wine over $100. I have a few in the collection that were $75ish. That said, I do love the idea of wine from an estate. Early in my wine career, I had no idea that a winery would buy grapes from other growers. Someday, I will be able to afford these kind of wines. Generally, my specific occasion wines are $25-35.

  • Some in Bordeaux use both oak fermenters and oak storage but this is 200% new? You are taking silly pills Anders if you think a winery is going to buy new 16 ton oak fermenters for each vintage. Then maybe they could justify a $1000 bottle but then we would all have the oak 2×4 planted in our mouths.
    I never thanked you for sharing the website bordoverview.com. I used it to make my 09 futures decisions. Thank you now and hopefully when I finally taste an 09!

  • Anonymous

    What a great episode. I’m not a baller but this certainly has convinced me to spring for 3 bottles of the 08 as the 06 is gone anyhow. I think single vineyard designations are critical at this price point. I’m not really considering going 100+ bones for wines that are not under the complete control of the winemaker as a single vineyard will offer. The pedigree here is so great and I have seen the property from below but would love to go up there at some point. One question I do have is how long this will need to age. I know that this will probably last 20-25+ years but how long til it’s coming together or is it together now.

  • NJ Big Chris

    This was great 2 part show. QOTD – I think wines like this have a lot of individual character that helps them to stand out from others but I would be nice if they were more affordable.

  • Anonymous

    This 2 part show was honestly one of the most interesting and fasinating shows I have ever seen on WLTV. The QOTD’s were also fantastic!
    QOTD1: Yes, I believe estate wines are important to the US wine industry. Just like there is a need for the <$10 mass produced wine, there needs to be that "love in bottle" epic, you probably can't afford this wine, that really sets the standard for what world class wines are from the United States.
    QOTD2: Absolutely I think you need a dedicated, passionate team to work daily on these types of estate wines.
    QOTD3: For all the reasons stated I think it would be great to see a second wine come from this estate that falls more in the $30 – $50 price range. A wine that those of us that can't drop 150 on a bottle can still grab and hopefully get a little look into what that top flight bottle might taste like.

  • Anonymous

    A lot of information packed into two episodes. Well done on all sides.

    QOTD: A huge fan of Ridge Montebello (grew up about four miles away) and find their use of estate fruit from a single location and two wines (Montebello and Santa Cruz Mountains) to be a great model.

  • Anonymous

    Wow – Some of the ideas Tim put forth on California wine style, oak treatment and the Mondavi winery were truly profound and really captured my attention in a way that elevated the entire program. I usually view this show as easily digestible but this had some unexpected meat to it. But he wasn’t unnecessarily serious. This is what I love about wine.

    As for the qotd, I think part of the allure of Bordeaux is that single estate model, we humans seem to be compulsive in our stereotypes and categorizations and it’s nice in a confusing wine world to give certain products a concrete identity. I’ll even go as far as to say that varietals on the front label feels tired.

  • QOTD: Great question. It is my opinion that if you’re going to get into this price point it is almost mandatory that you have complete control of the vineyard from start to finish as that will give you the ability to creat consistent wine that will only vary based on the weather from vintage to vintage.
    I loved this episode (both of them) but was disappointed that Carissa didn’t get much of an opportunity to get a word in edge wise.
    Gary, I love you to death, but you tend to talk over the person you interview to the point they don’t get to make their point. Just some constructive criticism from somebody who does the same thing. I’m constantly trying not to do that.
    Great show.

    Phil Anderson

  • Nicely said, Max.

  • You could have stopped watching…

  • A_S

    One of the best episodes ever!

    Interesting, fun and educational at the same time thanks to Gary and his amazing guests:)

    QOTD: I agree with missionpk, that the model used by Ridge (and others) is great. One estate and two wines. One made to be accessible and ready at a younger age. The other, a wine that perhaps needs more cellaring.
    This also allows you to drink wine from the estate more often, as one of the wines would be less expensive.

  • GREAT show!!! Thanks you Tim and Carissa for all the great information and history, the full hour had my fascinated.

    QOTD: I feel that with single estate wines you really get to share something special. The moment in time, the people, the vineyard and the particular part of this great world all coming together to create truly unique.

    Thank you all for your passion!

  • Thanks Philip!. I appreciate it

  • Anonymous

    Very good show, although I am always a bit careful about these monsters of the wine industry. For them it is always easy to sell their wine.
    I liked a lot the explanation of the taste of the wine through the winemaking process. Very interesting.
    QOTD1: I think fine quality wine should always be made from single estate! Otherwise winemaking becomes alchemy.
    QOTD2: the team is not so important, what matters are the winemaker and the viticulturalist!

  • JK

    The single estate thing is of interest – I would say that single estate wines can serve as archetypes for developing your palate – Cahors taste like this, Pritchard Hill like this and so on. Certainly not essential to everyone who wants some wine with dinner, but should be encouraged and celebrated for the segment of the market it serves.

    Team – important but it should transcend the indivduals who compose it. If your going for an “Estate” wine it should be an expression of the site, not the peeps.

  • I don’t know, just asking, it sounden like 200% too me when Tim spoke. Chateau de Reignac wine Balthus is 300% new oak at 100 bones. oak alcohol ferment, oak malolactic, oak storage all new according the owner. See it in this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EG1Yi_RdWk 24,40 min in. Hope your 2009’s will be spectacular. I ‘m waiting for them to be able to buy in sweden, but that will be fall 2012.

  • What an amazing show and lovely lovely guests!
    Unfortunately it’s difficult for me to afford wines like this and most of all find them as here in Italy is much more difficult but I garantee I’ll sooner or later try it as I’m really interested in the whole subject.

    QOTD: I think your project and your ideas are not silly at all, I think it’s great to put efforts to produce even a single wine when your estate, your grapes, your knowledge and most of all your terroir is good.
    My only concern is related to the people judgement, I mean that you really need to know the soil and the production of the wine region in specific Napa to really get deep in what a wine like Continuum gives you maybe more than others in terms of soil and territory expression.
    That said often who can afford these wines know what is buying and hopefully is capable to understand the differences and the truth a wine brings to the table more than others.
    This doesn’t happen always though, and this is my only concern.
    Beside that, even if you are not able to understand 100% what you have in your glass, you can at least enjoy the wine itself, its well madeness and its deliciousness.

  • Anonymous

    I’m now 6 miles from them. Where were you?

  • Anonymous

    I’m now 6 miles from them. Where were you?

  • Anonymous

    I’ll bring the wine glasses

  • Anonymous

    This ep. felt like more of an info-mercial for Continuum. Hhmm…

    QOTD: I have no problem w/the Estate wines. However, their QPR isn’t always something that has me going back.

  • Anonymous

    Nice part two GV. Is there anything better than having a long Wine Library Episode leftover for Saturday morning I don’t think so, its a great way to start your day and weekend!

  • One of Best!!
    Thank You Tim, Carissa and GV, Fabulous!!!

    Tim, loved the video on the 2008 Vintage that I found on YouTube, I Loved It!
    To all Vaniacs The link attached below.

    The Mondvai’s Are Bringing It Again, in a really big way!
    Tim keep the Mondavi passion alive and good luck to you and your Family on this new Journey.


    Single vineyerd means everything to me. It is a place I can go and count on the best quality and results from a Team utilizing what ever that God Given Vintage allows them to use.

    If or whem you add in an a wine like the OPUS Overture, with the lower price point, to allow many more wine lovers to experience your Team’s Abiltities and Passion will be a good thing.

    On The List and I’m Ready To Go.

    Upstate New York

  • Anonymous

    “MARE-LOW” LOVE IT! I will start pronouncing it that way from now on! 😀

  • Anonymous

    Big thanks to the Mondavis for participating. It was a great episode

    QOTD: I think the single vineyard is very very appealing. It makes the wine a very artful, self-contained expression. Single wine from a single vineyard is less important to me but still cool.

  • Anonymous

    In Los Altos Hills off of Altamont. A lot more than 4 miles by car, but about that as the crow flies. Used to go hiking up along Monte Bello ridge and Black Mountain all the time. There is something special about drinking wine from areas you know really well, especially if you never really thought of it as a wine-making area. I love the wine from Ridge, Big Basin, and now Rhys, but it is hard to separate that from my basic amazement that people are making great wine in areas I used to only know via hiking or biking.


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