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Pop Port Quiz

In my last regional overview, we went to Portugal. So, I figured the next natural progression would be to talk about Port, a fortified wine made by adding grape spirit to a fermenting juice to create an alcoholic sweet wine. As I mentioned in my Portugal post, the key Port-making region is the Douro Valley. To learn more about the other grape growing regions of Portugal, please see the original post.

Have your Port hat on?

[Answer(s) based on WSET Level 3 material]

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Ana Diogo-Draper 2016 Verdelho

I was excited to see this wine come in my delivery from NakedWines.com. Not regularly exposed to Spanish or Portuguese wines, my main experience with Verdelho has been with those from California. And I have to say Lodi is the up-and-coming region to watch when it comes to these (as of now) “lesser known” grape varieties. So, when I learned the grapes were harvested from Lodi, and the winemaker cut her teeth on Napa wines — great experience plus great fruit has to equal phenomenal wine, right?

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Wine & Spirits Magazine 2017 Top 100

It was with somber and heavy hearts that many of the wine industry gathered last Tuesday, October 10th, at the top of San Francisco’s Metreon. There to celebrate the achievement of winemakers around the world who secured a prestigious position on Wine & Spirits Magazine Top 100 Wineries of 2017, many’s minds couldn’t help but turn to those vineyards, wineries, and residents who’ve been impacted by the several fires that continue to devastate California’s beloved North Bay wine regions.

And yet, there was a consistent air of positivity that seemed to permeate the entirety of the evening. Tara Q. Thomas, Executive Editor of Wine & Spirits Magazine, expressed her deepest gratitude and appreciation to the number of caterers, sommeliers, and PR agencies who all offered to lend extra time and assistance to ensure the event went on. Indeed, the majority of Napa and Sonoma wineries scheduled to attend were able to pour and represent their hard work and beautiful wines.

It’s amazing how wine, a world-wide industry, is actually quite a tight-knit community — one that cares deeply for its members. It’s an industry I’m proud to be a part of and represent through my writing.

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Restaurant Review: Cafe Lucia

Downtown Healdsburg has turned into a foodie’s haven. Critically-acclaimed restaurants with top chefs are found, often, right next door to each other. So how does one choose? Sometimes it’s a matter of booking your table for two months in advance. Other times it means settling for an awkward 5pm or 9:15pm dinner rez. And, yet, my favorite maintains the secret third option: walking in to the least crowded restaurant when your stomach tells you it’s time to eat. Welcome to Cafe Lucia.

Cafe Lucia Patio Dining; Photo Courtesy of Cafe Lucia

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