A blind tasting with strangers

The couple was sitting on a wooden bench near the Point Reyes lighthouse. The man was looking through binoculars, hoping to get a glimpse of a whale, when I stepped up and asked if they'd like to partake in a blind tasting.They said yes without hesitation.Dale Carlson, 53, is a [...]

By | March 30th, 2009|0 Comments

Top tasting rooms that will appeal to the twittering crowd.

With the rainy season nearly behind us, sun-seekers are shaking off their umbrellas and beginning their tasting quest through Wine Country in earnest. Particularly the twenty-somethings, the offspring of the Baby Boomers, who are drawn to the wine culture in Napa and Sonoma. This tasting room tour -- an occasional [...]

By | March 26th, 2009|0 Comments

Has the Wine Road Barrel Tasting become a frat party?

One couple from Ohio left the Wine Road Barrel Tasting in a huff, saying they will never take part in the event again because of the antics of the younger crowd. They said it was more of a raucous party than a wine tasting.Who are these brash drinkers? A suspect [...]

By | March 19th, 2009|2 Comments

In this economic downturn, is it possible to shop Sonoma County only when it comes to wine? No way. Yes. Maybe.

I was strolling through Bottle Barn in Santa Rosa the other day and I noticed a display of budget wines with an ever-growing selection of imports. It occurred to me that those on a tight budget who like to shop Sonoma County wines have a dilemma. Most of the Sonoma [...]

By | March 16th, 2009|0 Comments

Let the fireworks begin. Pinot-lovers get to have their unmitigated say. What’s the chosen spot for pinot?

The other night I was tasting a glass of pinot from Peay Vineyards and I began to wonder where is the chosen spot for pinot? The Peay 2007 Pomarium, Sonoma Coast is both intense and elegant. It's earthy and ripe, and yet it has refreshing acidity. Wine critic Robert Parker [...]

By | March 12th, 2009|0 Comments

15 minutes of fame whittled down to 2? Find out what’s on the cutting room floor.

In Wine Country we consider vino full of intrigue, the making of great film noir. But apparently the producers of Platinum Weddings, a reality show which airs on WE T.V., don't find as much drama as we do in the glass. In a recent taping Randy Ullom, the winemaster at [...]

By | March 4th, 2009|0 Comments

Wine a hazard? What’s up with that?

Part with a glass of wine?"That's the most ridiculous thing I ever heard," as Groucho would say.The online banter in our global village continues to be about that British study that found one glass of chardonnay, a single beer or any other type of alcohol a day poses a cancer [...]

By | February 26th, 2009|0 Comments

Sommeliers are tested. Now’s your turn.

The last sip is in. The final scoring is calculated, revealing there are four new consummate know-it-alls among us. These superheroes passed a heady three-day exam, winning the title Master Sommelier. What did they do to earn their cape? They aced a three-part exam, with one portion a nerve-racking blind [...]

By | February 23rd, 2009|1 Comment

Eye on the Millennials

To compete with an influx of inexpensive wine from Australia and Spain, among other places, California vintners have been courting the Millennials, the children of Baby Boomers who range in age from 21 to 32, with hip budget blends like Seven Deadly Zins and Screw Kappa Napa. Some experts claim [...]

By | February 19th, 2009|0 Comments

Wine Country Jeopardy, Round 2

No sniffing or swirling involved here. Just a little game to check what brand of know-it-all you are - full-bodied or a light weight? This round of jeopardy is Wine Country Notables for $500? And the answer is -. 1) People know this power broker as anything but ordinary. Opinionated, [...]

By | February 12th, 2009|0 Comments