Tag: food and wine tasting

Jamieson Ranch Vineyards 2016 Reata Chardonnay

There are so many expressions of Chardonnay. And while I’ve known that in theory for quite some time, it seems to me that lately—within the last two years even—winemakers are taking advantage of what that really means. Any where from round and doughy to crisp to fruit forward, and the whole spectrum that spreads between. Get a good Chardonnay from a reputable winemaker, and he or she will only use the techniques that will showcase the vineyard and vintage. That is the direction Chardonnay is going: while its tastes and textures are still nearly 100% reliant on the winemaker, winemakers seem to be working with the grape, instead of just completely…working the grape.

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Savannah-Chanelle 2016 Tondre’s Grapefield Chardonnay

This is a wine that is quite special to me. I’m lucky enough to have winemakers send me their wines, invite me to visit, experience their vineyards. And I’ve discovered some beautiful — and very special — wines this way. But there is a special cubby hole in my heart and in my head I save for those wines I discover alongside my partner on a random excursion into wine country. Savannah-Chanelle had the added benefit of being close to our first home together, which was closer to San Francisco’s South Bay wine country — where the terroir and, thus, the varietal expressions are wholly different.

On Saturday nights we celebrate date night, when, if we have nothing else to toast, we toast each other. So cin-cin and cheers to us…

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Clos du Val 2017 Estate Pinot Noir Rosé

I wouldn’t say I’m into the rosé craze, but I will admit that more winemakers are crafting beautiful rosés, paying more attention to the specificity of flavors and textures innate in the grape’s variety. I’d say I’ve had the worst luck with Pinot Noir rosé’s — they seem to be over-extracted, too fruit forward, too one-dimensional, and, I hate to say it, too pink. But again, I’ve been noticing a difference over the past few years, and I can tell you for certain that Clos du Val has it right. Subtle aromas, hints of texture, and a sunset-orange hue: everything I wasn’t expecting from a rosé of Pinot Noir, but everything I love when sipping a rosé any day.

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Left Coast Cellars The Orchards Pinot Gris 2017

I have no catchy introduction for this Left Coast Cellars The Orchards Pinot Gris 2017 other than to say this is a legitimate expression of the Pinot Gris grape. I’ve had those that are, for lack of a better word, watery, those that are too fruity, others that are just bland. But here you have the subtlety of aromas, the delicacy of flavors, and that suggestion of texture that makes a white wine sing. Cheers Left Coast — Pinot Gris isn’t just palatable, it’s enjoyable.

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Stinson Vineyards 2017 Rosé of Mourvèdre

I was extremely excited when I opened my package from Stinson Vineyard to find a rosé of Mourvèdre. Ever since I’ve tasted the version created by Larry Schaffer of Tercero in Santa Barbara, California, I’ve been in love with this kind of wine innovation. A rustic red turned rosé? Yes please. But to taste something from the other side of the country, from White Hall, Virginia, was to taste something completely different. 

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