When we first met Penny Gadd-Coster, now owner and winemaker for Coral Mustang, she was still working at Jordan Winery as the enologist. She and her husband Frank had invited us to meet with them and tour the winery, which was closed to the public. When Penny took us up to the lab and pulled out several Riedel glasses and a wine thief, we knew this was not going to be your ordinary tour.
Some years (and another winery job) later, Penny decided it was time to strike out on her own with the Coral Mustang label. Coral is her middle name and a mustang, in the parlance of the U.S. Marines, is an officer who has come up through the ranks, as opposed to starting as an officer. That’s Penny’s story, too.
She’s focusing on tempranillo. Penny told us a few years ago that she made that choice because it was an up and coming grape with not a lot of competition in a tight wine market. And the grape is, indeed, finally getting some traction in the wine world. Although she is based in Sonoma, she sources her grapes from Paso Robles.
The result? Some of the most incredible tempranillo wines on the planet. Penny makes her wines to be friendly with a wide range of foods. One night, when she came to visit us, we made dinner together. Chicken breasts with two kinds of beurre blanc. Anne made the traditional, lemon-based style, and Penny did a version with blueberries. Her tempranillo worked beautifully with both.
Penny just joined a brand-new tasting room called Vino Veritas, 118 North Street, Healdsburg, California. You can also buy Coral Mustang wines here.