Tag: Carneros

Eighty Four Wines 2017 Albariño

Abariño? Yes, please! That’s kind of my attitude every time I see the Spanish white wine on the menu. Indeed, every time I do see it on a menu, it is a wine hailing from the motherland. So when I opened up my delivery from Eighty Four wines (a side project by Elias Fernandez and Doug Shafer of Shafer Vineyards — read more about the Eighty Four Wines project here) and saw an Albariño from one of the most esteemed Napa-based producers, I was delighted, excited, and suddenly quite thirsty…

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Eighty Four Wines 2014 Malbec

Napa Valley Malbec. Yes, that’s right. Malbec that is grown and produced in Napa Valley. Is this new to you? It’s new to me — and a welcome new addition to my wine portfolio it is. And who better than to introduce this unique 100% varietal wine than the esteemed team from Shafer Vineyards — Elias Fernandez, winemaker for Shafer Vineyards, Doug Shafer, owner and proprietor. Eighty Four wines is a side project of the two longtime friends who’ve been working together since 1984.

The first few years were challenging – experimenting, working long hours, learning from our mistakes, pushing ourselves to make the best wines we could. They were exciting years. This wine represents two friends going full circle – making wine together, trying new things, doing what we love. That’s the spirit of Eighty Four. – Elias Fernandez & Doug Shafer


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Shafer Vineyards 2016 Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay

I consider it an honor to be able to taste what Shafer creates. I had no idea when I first came into contact with them what kind of high-caliber wine experiences I was about to embark on. From the TD-9 Bordeaux blend to the Relentless Syrah — not to mention the Hillside Select I’m selfishly cellaring for a special occasion. Well, when I shared my last two experiences, there was an overwhelming response about how much people have enjoyed Shafer over the years — each vintage providing a unique experience. But one comment captured my attention: a recommendation to try Shafer Vineyard’s Chardonnay. I am pleased to say I was able to do so. Here is my story…

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Frank Family Vineyards 2016 Pinot Noir

The new vintage of Frank Family Vineyards Pinot Noir was an exciting find for me. After having two excellent experiences with their Chardonnay, I was eager to see what their dual Napa-Sonoma vineyards had to say about Pinot Noir. In my experience, Carneros Pinot Noirs can be a bit harsh and lacking in any real substance — both texturally and flavor-wise. But maybe that’s because I always stuck to one side of the Carneros fence. Maybe the trick is to have a little bit of both…

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Frank Family Vineyards 2016 Chardonnay

My first sip of Frank Family Vineyards actually happened at a local restaurant, Scott’s Seafood. By that time I’d heard so much about the iconic Napa winery, but had never actually tasted anything from them. So I was delighted to see their Chardonnay on the menu, the perfect accompaniment to my seafood dinner. That was over a year ago already, and I still remember how much I enjoyed that wine. So here’s a peek at what the latest vintage has to offer…

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