Joachim Splichal has been a master chef for years, helming one of Los Angeles’ most iconic restaurants, Patina, and he currently oversees 65 restaurants worldwide. So perhaps it should not be a surprise that he has turned to making his own wine from his native France, specifically a Provence-style rose’ … Read the rest
The Grapes of Wrath
Fortunately, Wrath Wines are not angry, but they are specific. Case in point, this single vineyard Syrah out of Monterey, the San Saba Vineyard, will benefit from a little decanting before drinking. It’s a big boy but has class, allowing the deep rich fruit to open … Read the rest
Frank Family is celebrating over 25 years in the wine business, a feat owner Rich Frank might not have thought possible given the fierce competition out there. But what their 2017 Carneros Pinot Noir shows is that truly wonderful wines always have an audience. I’ve had Frank Family wines over … Read the rest
Though to “bootleg” means to hide contraband, or illegally make something, the 2014
Bootleg Red Wine offers nothing but transparency. A kitchen sink blend of Syrah,
Merlot, Petite Sirah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Verdot, the fruit is mainly from Napa
with about 13% of it coming from Mendocino. There’s a … Read the rest
Josephine Tychson became the first female winemaker on record in the Napa Valley
when she established what would become Freemark Abbey in 1886. We don’t know for
certain how good the wines were then, but the 2013 Cabernet would make her proud.
Pulled from five different vineyard sites, all located … Read the rest
Barefoot Moscato Spritzer: Sometimes, simplicity is best. Barefoot’s line of canned spritzers are in that vein, simple beverages but delightfully executed and quite tasty.
The Moscato uses Muscat of Alexandria and Chenin Blanc along with carbonated water then adds natural flavors of peach, tangerine and honey making this wildly drinkable. … Read the rest
Though Livermore Valley has a long and enviable wine history dating back to the 1840s when grapevines went into the ground, it nonetheless has been overshadowed by its northern neighbors. That oversight is being corrected with a slew of exceptional wines.
Murrieta’s Well traces its heritage back to 1884, and … Read the rest
It was 1981 when Dennis and Judy Groth purchased a 121-acre parcel of land in Napa and from that day to this the focus has been on producing a handful of wines but specializing in Cabernet Sauvignon. Their 2015 Reserve Cabernet is such a comprehensive Cabernet, allowing the fruit to … Read the rest
A silky smooth version from Washington State, this is a middle of the road Merlot, allowing non-Merlot folks to step towards this grape without sacrificing what they want in terms of flavor, structure and drinkability. There is plenty of boysenberry, blackberry, blueberry and black cherry, with back notes of resin, … Read the rest
Chappellet Winery has been crafting wine for over 50 years. It has always been a Cabernet Sauvignon house, but hiding in the shadows is its stellar Cabernet Franc. Made of Cabernet Franc with 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 4% each of Malbec and Petite Verdot, this is a generous wine, popping … Read the rest
Dutton Goldfield has had a stellar reputation with Chardonnay since they opened their doors in 1998. The Chardonnay, actually a Chardonnay musque clone from their Rued Vineyard site, provides more aromatics than other Chardonnay clones. There is certainly an obvious malolactic element evident on the nose and in the palate, … Read the rest
For eight decades Martini has been at it pressing grapes and making wine. Its Sonoma expressions of Cabernet have always been consistent and provide a hallmark of quality from the Dry Creek Valley. The 2015 vintage is no exception.
Comprising mainly Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot, Petite Sirah and Cabernet Franc, … Read the rest
Dalla Valle’s nearly iconic Napa vineyard is surprisingly just 15 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon. From that they are able to extract excellent fruit and consistently craft excellent wines. Supple and earthy with restrained fruit and a surprising acidity, this 2014 fires on all cylinders.
At first there are soft notes … Read the rest
Howell Mountain is one of the notable places in Napa for quality Cabernet Sauvignon fruit. The area consists of two types of specific soil; a volcanic ash and iron-rich red clay, and these come to bear in the Ladera Cab. There’s also a provenance to Howell Mountain as it has … Read the rest
Mendocino’s Anderson Valley has made a name for itself with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Roederer Estate takes advantage of that using only estate sourced fruit for their premier sparkler, L’Ermitage. The Mendocino winery was founded in 1981, and this wine is overseen by winemakers from both Anderson Valley and the … Read the rest