Wine of the Week – 2011 Brave and Maiden “Union”


“Now ‘neath the Falls, they live and breath—the Brave and the Maiden of Nojoqui.” Photo: Brave & Maiden

The newest winery to emerge in the Santa Ynez Valley, Brave and Maiden takes its name from a local Chumash legend of tragic love, much akin to Romeo and Juliet. After caring for a wounded soldier from a neighboring tribe, a young maiden falls in love, much to the dismay of her father, the tribe leader. The chief decides to chase the man out from the tribe and rather than lose each other, the young lovers take their own lives.

The front label features an etching of the local Nojoqui Waterfall from which the lovers were said to have jumped to their deaths.

A blend of entirely estate grown Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Franc from Brave and Maiden’s own vineyards in Santa Ynez, the first release from the new project is truly a showstopper.

On the nose, the wine offers aromas of candied violet and iris flowers that mix with notes of dark fruit, including blackberry, dark cherry, and plum, with an undercurrent of smoke and hints of mocha. A broad mouthfeel, with velvety tannins and a long, lingering finish .

Unlike Paso Robles, one doesn’t often find Rhone and Bordeaux varieties blended together in the Santa Barbara region, and this delicious sultry blend has me wondering why!


Region: Santa Ynez Valley

Blend: 49% Syrah, 35% Merlot, and 16% Cabernet Franc

Cases Produced: 1,071

Average Retail Price: $30

Where To Find:    

Bar Covell – 4628 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles CA

Lincoln Fine Wines: 727 Lincoln Blvd, Venice, CA

Wades Wines: 30961 Agoura Rd, Westlake Village, CA

WSA/NASA Silver Pin Certified Sommelier, Central Coast wine enthusiast and overall travel junkie

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