A Life Changing Wine Stained Moment

A Life Changing Wine Stained Moment

        Let’s face it – there are a lot of wine writers, and I’m sure most of us would all aspire to own our own vineyard someday. For me, the steps that would require just don’t fit in my current world.  But there are others who madly pursue their dream. Donna and […]

Bourgogne: New Generation, New Sense of Identity

        Bourgogne is reclaiming its identity as one of the most iconic regions of France with a return to the original name. In the past, Bourgogne adopted an alternate identity for export markets with the use of the ‘Burgundy’ designation for the English-speaking markets, or Burgund for the German speaking and many other […]

SIMI Winery: Tragedy to Triumph

SIMI Winery: Tragedy to Triumph

          SIMI Winery started with the hard work and persistence of two immigrant brothers.  But it continued due to the determination of one 18-year-old girl who would not let tragedy end her family’s legacy.         That legacy, shown in this anthology video, carried on for more than a century […]

Second Half 2020 Sample Roundup

IMG

      It’s sample time and I never knew what a challenge these would be in the time of COVID.  Usually, I invite friends over and pop open a few bottles, and, if my husband is in a cooking mode, then I get to use my pairing skills.  When the pandemic happened, the samples […]

You Had Me at Pinot: Exploring Wines of Germany

wein

      I didn’t grow up in a wine household.  A special occasion was a bottle of Blue Nun on the table, which was my first introduction to German wines.  I recently attended a You Had Me at Pinot class exploring the diversity of the grape with a Pinot Gris, two versions of Pinot […]

Tasting History with the Women of Bacigalupi Vineyards

0K

      The Women of Bacigalupi Vineyards, Photo Credit: Bacigalupi Vineyards   Bacigalupi Vineyards is one of the best kept secrets in the Russian River Valley. You may have heard the story of a 1976 tasting in which a California chardonnay gained world recognition by beating French burgundy wines in a side-by-side competition. That […]

Santa Lucia Highlands Packs a Punch

Santa Lucia Highlands AVA

  Santa Lucia Highlands AVA, Courtesy of Santa Lucia Highlands Wine Artisans   There exists a small, but dynamic, wine region within the Santa Lucia Mountains near Monterey County on California’s Central Coast. Located on Highway 101, between San Francisco and Paso Robles, the Santa Lucia Highlands AVA, is only 18 miles long and 22,000 […]

Seven Expressions of One Grape

Seven Expressions of One Grape

      Theresa Heredia, Winemaker of Gary Farrell Winery, Courtesy of Gary Farrell Winery   Pinot Noir is a grape that is not known for being easy.  As Natasha Hughes, MW, once said, “When Pinot producers get it right, the wines have it all: gorgeous aromatics, silky texture, bright acidity and supple tannins. What’s […]

Bibiana Gonzalez Rave and Jeff Pisoni: Power Couple in Wine

Power Couple in Wine

  Bibiana Gonzalez Rave and Jeff Pisoni, Courtesy of Alma de Cattleya   Bibiana Gonzalez Rave and Jeff Pisoni, the winemakers for Alma de Cattleya and Lucia Vineyards, are examples of a true power couple in wine. These two have been married since 2011 and talked about how they are dedicated to helping the other make better wine. […]

Ponzi Vineyards: Fifty Years of Original Oregon

      Anna Maria, Dick and Luisa Ponzi and me       At the Wine Writers’ Educational Tours, during my time in the Willamette Valley, I had the chance to sit down with Dick and Nancy Ponzi.  They were participating in a panel about what it took to plant vines, harvest grapes and […]

Smith-Story Wine Cellars: Breaking The Mold In The Story of Wine

Smith-Story Wine Cellars

  Lord Sandwich from Smith-Story Wine Cellars poses with me, his loyal subject   It’s rare that I write a story of an untraditional winery.  Wineries aren’t crowdfunded.  Winery dogs are the norm.  They don’t become brand ambassadors with 72,500 Instagram followers, a label of their own and a charity of their own.  But, you […]

Domaine Anderson Winery: In Pursuit of the American Grand Cru

      We began our wine country exploration in Anderson Valley in Mendocino with a tour of Domaine Anderson Winery with Winemaker Darrin Low.     In 1981, Jean-Claude Rouzaud of the Louis Roederer family took one look at the remote area and saw its potential in cultivating an American Grand Cru.  Prior to Roederer, […]

Ushering out the Decade with Stellar Holiday Samples

  It’s crazy that 2019 has passed in a flash and a new year/decade has begun.  Why not usher in a new decade with a round-up article of a few favorite samples over the holidays?  Due to the weather, there is always a rush of samples shipped when the weather breaks in Texas, so it’s […]

Uncovering the Differences in Willamette Valley Pinot Noir AVA by AVA

Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

    The Willamette Valley is a region that is planted with 80 percent Pinot Noir grapes and because of that, it’s very easy to have the misconception that Oregon Pinot Noirs are similar in nature. But once you factor in AVAs, clones, soils, temperatures and the seven regions, you’ll find that while the Willamette […]

One Man’s Quest to Discover His Wine Palate Led to Making His Own Wine

Rob Barney, Vintner, Stressed Vines For Rob Barney, Stressed Vines’ Vintner, drinking wine was once a “safe label” choice.  He relied on labels, scores and brand name producers. In 2014, he decided it was time to expand and be more adventurous.  Little did he know that would take him down a path of making his own […]

A Deeper Dive into Santa Barbara: Jackson Family Winemakers’ Perspective

  Santa Barbara Panelists of Winemakers The winemakers in the room had a combined 100 years of experience.  All with different perspectives on how to farm, manage their vineyards and on their winemaking techniques.  But they shared a bond and passion for Santa Barbara and a common owner – Jackson Family Wines. This was the […]

Talking Villa Maria Wines with Snooth and Winemaker Kathrin Jankowiec

New Zealand wines

New Zealand has been making wines since the 1850s, but the modern wine industry in New Zealand began in the mid-20th century and expanded rapidly in the early 21st century with the sustainable practices and modern winemaking techniques. Recently, I attended a Snooth virtual tasting with Co-Founder and Chief Taster Mark Angelillo from Snooth and […]

Domaine Drouhin and Jordan Family Tasting & A Closer Look at Cameron Hughes

Domaine Drouhin and Jordan Family

Art by Vino Mosaics This week’s wine column focuses on multiple samples that came from two families that are considered to be stalwarts in wine – the Drouhin family and the Jordan family.  It also covers Cameron Hughes, a man who took a different approach by not having his own vineyards, but by finding interesting […]