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Boost Your Wine IQ: Harvestspeak

And so it begins, another harvest when fermenting grapes fills the air, reminding us that we live an agrarian life, and that just outside our door are hillsides ribbed in vineyards. Today Mumm Napa Winery begins picking grapes for its bubbly, and other sparkling wine houses soon will follow suit. [...]

By | July 27th, 2016|0 Comments

Chateau St. Jean’s Somber Bastille Day Celebration

  My Francophile friend and I went to the Bastille Day celebration at Chateau St. Jean in Kenwood on Saturday, and the GM immediately set the tone. Michael McNeil spoke about the attack in Nice, telling the crowd how upsetting it was. He said, in so many words, we stand [...]

By | July 18th, 2016|0 Comments

Let the Tourist Wars Begin

Some Kenwood residents are outraged by what they see as spiraling development. The latest upset? Kenwood Vineyards, purchased by international wine and spirits giant Pernod Ricard in 2014, drew criticism from local residents when it outlined its effort to get a use permit for a new tasting room and an [...]

By | July 1st, 2016|0 Comments

Take the perfect wine-centric day-cation through Napa

Do you squeeze a vacation into a 24-hour sprint? If so, you’re in good company. It turns out that day trippers are the largest segment of tourists — 66.2 percent – and they fancy wine tasting, with an average of 3.5 tasting rooms typically on their itinerary, according to a [...]

By | June 28th, 2016|0 Comments

Got a minute? Boost Your Wine IQ on “Chilling” in 60 seconds.

Do you ever feel that Mother Nature has a mischievous streak when there’s a spike in temperatures? No worries. You can outsmart her antics with these tips: When cooling a bottle during a heat wave, don’t be rash. Skip the freezer as your most expedient method of cooling down a [...]

By | June 21st, 2016|0 Comments

California Dominates in World’s Largest Wine Competition

After a rigorous week of tasting more than 16000 wines in this year's Decanter World Wine Awards, 240 judges gave high marks to California. It won the majority of Gold and Platinum medals awarded to the states. Rutherford’s Frog’s Leap, 2013 Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon was awarded Best USA Red Bordeaux [...]

By | June 8th, 2016|0 Comments

Auction Napa Valley 2016 Highlights — the Best of the Best

At Auction Napa Valley Saturday, bidders under the white tent seemed more than happy to dispose of their disposable incomes. Their spiraling bids helped organizers raise an estimated weekend take of $14.2 million. To capture the color of the auction weekend – the fashion, the humor, the bidding mentality – [...]

By | June 5th, 2016|0 Comments

Cult Cab Substitutes

No need to spend the nest egg with this line-up of cabernet sauvignons. With an eye to Auction Napa Valley, I wanted to offer a line-up of cabs with a palatable price tag. Here's a recap of this week's blind tasting: TOP PICK Louis M. Martini Louis M. Martini, 2014 [...]

By | June 1st, 2016|0 Comments

40 Years Ago Today the Paris Tasting Shocked the Wine World

A panel of French judges unwittingly picked California wines as the victors, transforming the global winescape forever. Ron Dick, a grower in Alexander Valley, is intent on claiming his family’s part in the historic upset. His father – Henry Dick – supplied 20 tons of chardonnay grapes for the winning [...]

By | May 24th, 2016|0 Comments

Wine Country dream: Winemaker dinner at Valette’s in Healdsburg

  Robert Louis Stevenson has said “Wine is bottled poetry.” But after a unique, wine-centric dinner last night at Healdsburg’s Valette, I think this quote is more apt: “Wine is bottled passion.” A trio of friends decided – over beer mind you – to create a dinner that would showcase [...]

By | May 6th, 2016|0 Comments