Category: Wine

wine reviews, wine events, and all things wine related

Iron Horse Vineyards 2013 Chinese Cuvée

This is not a Chinese wine. I’m just putting that out there because when I first received this wine I completely thought Iron Horse went rogue in China. They did not. In fact, this bottle was made to celebrate the Chinese Zodiac — 2018 is the year of the dog. Despite this not being a Chinese wine, I did pair this with a Chinese-inspired recipe…

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Ferrari Trento Brut Sparkling Wine

When I received this bottle of Ferrari Trento Brut Sparkling Wine, they were kind enough to include a recipe. In Italian culture, sparkling wine is like any other wine — a wine to be paired for food. In our modern American culture, we’ve come to think as bubbles as something to be enjoyed on its own or with a light amuse bouche. I’m not saying some folks don’t pair sparkling wine with food, but it’s not that common — at least not for me. So, while I didn’t use the recipe provided, I did take their suggestion to pair the Brut with food as a personal challenge. I’ve a short series dedicated to sparkling wines this week (there will be some interesting sips for sure, so keep checking in) — all of which will be paired with a meal and some that will even include an actual recipe. What better way to start this week’s theme than with the folks who inspired this idea. Cheer Ferrari!

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Theopolis Vineyards 2015 Yorkville Highlands Symphony

Symphony — No it’s not the name of a blend. This is a grape varietal. It is one of the several cross-clonal hybrid grape creations by University of California, Davis viticulturist Dr. Harold Olmo. He’s known for quite a few, including Ruby Cabernet (cross-breed Cabernet Sauvignon and Carignane) and Emerald Riesling (cross-breed Moscadelle and Riesling). Gaining in popularity is the Symphony grape, a hybrid of Muscat of Alexandria and Grenache Gris.

Developed by Olmo in 1948, it took him nearly 40 years to perfect the clone, and it wasn’t released for commercial use until 1984. He developed the white grape to withstand the downright hot climate of California’s Central Valley, however today it seems to thrive best in cooler temps, with most plantings found in either Lodi or the Sierra Foothills. But their’s one woman brave enough to take the plantings to her even higher, cooler climate AVA of Yorkville Highlands. And in so-doing, she’s crafted a beautifully floral-forward wine that’s unlike any other. It must be the work of the wine queen herself — Theodora Lee aka “Theo-patra.”

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Theopolis Vineyards 2016 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

After tasting the Theopolis Vineyards 2015 Yorkville Highlands Pinot Noir, I was absolutely curious to try Theodora’s take on the grapes from Santa Lucia Highland. While both Yorkville and Santa Lucia are mountainous regions whose climates and terroir are affected by their proximity to the ocean, my lone experience with the Yorkville expression of Pinot Noir could not have been more different than my multiple experiences of the grapes from SLH. So to taste the juxtaposition from this talented winemaker was both a treat and an educational experience.

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Theopolis Vineyards 2016 Rosé of Petite Sirah

This was my first experience with a rosé of Petite Sirah, and I’m so glad that it’s with Queen Theo-patra herself. Theodora describes this delicate take on a robust wine as “elegant,” “curvy,” and “feminine.” While I do agree, I can’t help but add that this curvaceous lady has a bit of a tom-boy streak. As beautiful as she is, she’s ready to get rough and tumble. Can you handle a woman with strength? Grab a glass and find out.

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