January 28, 2014

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Wines of the Week (WOW):

  • 2008 Calafia, Napa Cab
  • 2005 Delgadillo, Napa Cab
  • 2010 Keever, Napa Cab
  • 2010 Emerson Brown, Oakville, Napa Cab
  • 2010 BV Georges De Latour, Napa Cab
  • 2010 Cambiata, Monterey Tannat
  • 2011 Terra Valentine, Napa Cab

Value-Price find, Emerson Brown, around $45.

Oldie but a Goodie, BV George De Latour

Interesting, the Cambiata Tannat, a grape variety that doesn’t get out much, but should.

Dead center of my Cali Wine palette, Keever, Celia Welch the winemaker.

Nose for News:

Jon Bonne’, SF Chronicle Wine Writer and Author, Winemakers to Watch in 2014.  Of note is Mark Adams, of Ledge Vineyards in Paso Robles.  He is the Asst WM at Saxum–on my list of a new wine venture to try in Paso.

Schrader Cellars announced their winter release, taking orders last Tuesday, Jan 18, at 9 AM, the opportunity to spend a minimum of $700 for four bottles of premium 2012 wine–it doesn’t get much better than these wines.  And the server promptly crashed, proving that the recession is over!  No fear; Schrader took a mulligan, and was ready for business the next morning, and to my knowledge it went without a hitch, selling out in 24 hours.  Perhaps ACA could consult with Schrader IT people for the healthcare website…

Shakeup at Eberle Wines in Paso Robles.  Always sad to see founders and family members become flotsam in corporate squabbles, especially one so well-regarded as Gary Eberle.

Quotes:

“What contemptible scoundrel stole the cork from my lunch?!”  –WC Fields

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Best Napa Valley Winery Map

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From The Napa Valley website, www.visitnapavalley.com.

My favorite map of the valley and its wineries, best printed on 8 1/2 x 14 rather than letter.

 

 

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What to Feed a Cold, Heidi Mitchell, Wall Street Journal

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In the Health and Wellness section of WSJ, December 17, 2013, “What to Feed a Cold.”

She discusses the myth of dairy, the impact of alcohol, “Mom’s Penicillin”, and Vitamin C

 

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Tim Fish, What is Meant by a Wine’s ‘Finish’

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From Tim Fish post from Wine Spectator,

When people talk about a wine’s “finish,” they’re referring to the impression that a wine leaves after it’s been tasted. A long finish is often taken as a sign of quality.  Finish can refer to the aftertaste, to how long the flavors last until they fade, and also to the textural impact, like if a wine has drying tannins or a crisp finish. The term “length” is used somewhat interchangeably, but it specifically refers to how long a wine’s flavors linger. I’ve heard some people count a length in seconds or minutes, but I don’t know if that’s very useful to folks unless they have a stopwatch in their hands.

When you say “medium-plus finish,” I imagine you’re asking specifically about length. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with simply saying “medium finish.” Some other ways to describe a finish: moderate length, fine length, good length, modest length, lengthy finish or ample length. I also find it helpful to talk about how the flavors persist, last, linger, crescendo or gain momentum.

Those are just some of the terms I use. There are many ways to describe a wine, so the best thing you can do is find a vocabulary that works for you and feels natural when you use it.

—Dr. Vinny  (a pseudonym for Tim Fish wine meanderings)

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Nuts to you!

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Jane Brody, New York Times article, “Snacking Your Way to Better Health,” December 9, 2013

Since I have gone from sugar snacks to nuts, I have lost inches and also satisfies appetite urges.  Trader Joe’s has the best stock of nuts, from large bags and assortment of nuts, to bags of individually wrapped almonds, each which will make a snack.  Best for appetite suppressant are the raw; while I like the taste of roasted, and worse yet, salted, the raw is best to satisfy hunger.

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La Vista Vineyards, from Wine Write

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Ken Riding, owner of La Vista Vineyards in Paso Robles, has been my guide to the exploration and enjoyment of the wine region that has quickly become my second favorite (still a sucker for Napa) in the world.

A blogger I follow called Wine Write, has done a great piece on Ken and La Vista Vineyards, posted November 24, 2013.

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Tim Fish on Merlot Ratings for 2013

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From Tim Fish of Wine Spectator, the list of the top Merlots, mostly 2010s, http://www.winespectator.com/wines/list/id/49084

The big surprises to me are Amuse Bouche, Blankiet Estate, and Verite’ La Muse, all big money wines, didn’t crack 90!

And Cakebread, though not known for their reds, only got a 78 for their $54 Merlot!

Big Winners:  94 points

  •  Hourglass, Blueline Vineyard, Napa Valley, 2010, $75
  • Coup de Foudre 37.2 Cuvee Napa Valley 2010, $75
  • Carter Hossfield Coliseum Napa Valley 2010, $75

I would add as a surprise ‘big winner’

  •  Kendall Jackson, Sonoma County Vintner’s Reserve, 2010, 90 points for $19!

Disappointments:

  •  Verite’ La Muse Sonoma County 2009, 88 points at $370!
  • 3 different vineyard Duckhorns, 86, 88, and 89 points, at $70, $90, & $54
  • 3 different blends of Pride, 80, 87, 87, at $58, $75, & $120

Reliably good:

  • Lewis Napa Valley 2010, 93 points for $75
  • Moone-Tsai, Hillside Blend Howell Mtn, 2009, 93 points for $85
  • Pahlmeyer Napa Valley 2010, 91 points for $75
  • Plumpjack Napa Valley 2010, 92 points for $52
  • Realm The Tempest, Napa Valley 2010, 92 points for $75
  • Robert Foley Napa Valley 2010, 91 points for $52

Enjoy,

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Hyper-decanting

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Wine: Decanting in a blender?, from Jessica Yadegaran San Jose Mercury News post, Oct 28, 2013.

Jessica cites Nathan Myrhvold…the best way to decant even a prized or aged wine is to whip it with an immersion blender for 30-60 seconds.  Myhrvold calls it hyperdecanting…

Quoting Tim Hanni, “But my real advice? Give your wine mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.”

Says Jessica, “Perhaps the best decanter is, indeed, your mouth.

Having worked with Decanters, Aerators, and simply open bottles, I would tend to agree that oral decanting is the best way to go!

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K&L Wines, Napa Valley Electronic Newsletter

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K&L is well-known for its regular newsletters.  This is the latest “Napa Valley Electronic Newsletter.”

There are features articles on,

  • Groth Vineyards and Winery
  • Mayacamas Vineyard
  • Clos duVal
  • Amici

In addition to its Value Picks, K&L features New Releases from many Napa favorites

  • Caymus
  • Lewis
  • Opus One
  • Spottswoode
  • Araujo
  • Joseph Phelps
  • O’Shaughnessy
  • Dominus
  • Chateau Montelena
  • Heitz
  • Dunn
  • Robert Mondavi

 

 

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Stags Leap District, Vineyard to Vintner, April 25 – 27, 2014

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Always a good time, involving 19 wineries in the Stags Leap District, a special open house, one-on-one access, culinary pairings and exclusive tastings.  You will be treated like royalty, away from the tasting room crowds.

For more information, check out their website, www.stagsleapdistrict.com/V2V

 

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