Handwritten 2011 Stags Leap Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Decadently dark and sultry with aromas of black currant, cassis, tobacco and leather, the 2011 Handwritten Stags Leap Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon boasts seductive flavors of blackberry, smoked cherries, and offers virile tannins that suggests an executive boardroom tryst. We tasted this one along with some other Handwritten Wines releases in their lovely Saint Helena Tasting room on a recent trip to Napa for the 2014 Harvest. We liked this and their other wines so much we had […]

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Cornerstone Oregon 2012 Willamette Valley Chardonnay

Lemon zest, whipped pineapple, slate and toasted vanilla on the nose, the straw-hued 2012 Cornerstone Oregon Willamette Valley Chardonnay tastes of Meyer lemons, vanilla and a tiny hint of plantain. Crisp acidity balanced with a creamy malo mid palate and lingering finish.  A lovely example of a cold-climate Chardonnay, or any-climate Chardonnay, for that matter! 13.5% Alcohol by volume (ABV) Bottled by Cornerstone Cellars in Gaston, Oregon. $40 Pairing: We paired it with Turkey and […]

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Cornerstone Cellars 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

An incredible steak companion, the Cornerstone Cellars 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon vastly exceeds expectations in a vintage that challenged other wineries. No challenge here. A beautiful wine that hints at Bordeaux but delivers California. Opulent dark fruit aromas with notes of lavender and cocoa, a palate of blackberry, cassis and perfectly balanced tannins. Drink now or cellar. We paired with a cocoa-rubbed, oven-broiled rib-eye, rested in bacon fat. 14.3% ABV. SRP $65. Well worth the […]

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Good Texas wines honor Terroir

Many Texas wineries exhibit the hubris Texas has become known for all over the world — with a swagger and a determination, they attempt to bend Mother Nature over and whip her into submission. If it works for oil, then why shouldn’t it work for wine? Those wineries making mediocre wines claim any ‘perceived’ flaws can be attributed to the terroir (a French word that refers to the set of special characteristics of geography, geology […]

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Fortant de France 2012 Coast Select Muscat

The 2012 Fortant de France Muscat Vin de Pays d’Oc Coast Select is an aromatic white from the South of France. A nose of apples, rose petals and honeysuckle leads to flavors reminiscent of Star jasmine, Fuji apples and orange zest. 100% Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains or “white Muscat with little berries” which is considered to be the best of the Muscat grape variety. Texans would recognize it as Muscat Canelli. 14% ABV Suggested […]

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Cornerstone Oregon 2011 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

Vibrant ruby in color, with a luscious nose of strawberries, blackberries and rhubarb; a whiff of white pepper and a hint of patchouli. This 2011 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir White Label from Cornerstone Cellars, Gaston, Oregon offers flavors of black cherries, smokey strawberries and sensual tannins. With balanced acidity, this is a Pinot Noir for the ages. ABV 13.5%. $50. Pairing Suggestion: Roasted Pork Tenderloin medallions rubbed with rosemary, thyme and garlic.

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Wines of San Juan, Argentina

Wines of where? Puerto Rico? Nope, these wines are from the up-and-coming province of San Juan, Argentina, and they offer a pleasant reminder of the value that lesser-known wine-producing regions around the world can deliver. They also remind us that purity can equal quality in wines. Bonarda, Tannat, Syrah, Malbec and Torrontes are some of the main varietals coming out of this province, and with little exception, it seems that winemakers of San Juan are […]

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Review: Goldwater 2012 Pinot Noir (Marlborough, NZ)

Bright and delicate with none of those wet leaves that tend to over power some pinots, this Goldwater 2012 Pinot Noir hails from the famed Wairau Valley of Marlborough, New Zealand. All the luscious flavors, strawberry, black cherry and spice, that make Pinot Noir so enjoyable with food. Grapes are sustainably farmed. 100% Pinot Noir. ABV 13.0% SRP $20 – 24.

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Three-legged dogs, Jack Dempsey and Rye Whiskey

Imagine music so good, so soulful, so gypsy, so nasty, so pure, that it gets into the very marrow of your bones, rips your heart out and washes it gently in the lazy waters of the Delta then puts it back in your chest, only to leave you wanting more. Imagine a transcendent voice, both gravely and smooth at the same time, weaving tales of three-legged dogs, Jack Dempsey and Rye whiskey in and around a […]

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