All posts tagged: Wine

Featured Wine of the Week – White Pinot Noir

One day I was scrolling through my Instagram feed, when I stumbled onto a review of a White Pinot Noir.  I paused and read through it.  A White Pinot Noir?  I pondered it and wondered if it was in the style of White Zinfandel.  If it was, I was not interested.  But if it wasn’t…well, if it wasn’t, this would be a very unique wine! I’ve noticed a trend lately of taking traditionally red varietals and making them into white wines.  To create these wines the winemakers need to ensure minimal contact with the color giving skins of the grapes.  In the case of the White Pinot Noir I tasted from Left Coast Estate, careful attention was taken by fermenting the grapes in stainless steel at a cool temperature.  No oak was used.  This produced a Pinot Noir that is very clean and is, in fact, a white wine. Left Coast Estate’s White Pinot Noir was created when the overcast and chilly “Bummer Summer” of 2011 produced slightly unripe grapes.  On the bottle they say, …

Featured Wine of the Week – Four Vines “The Willing”

It seems I’ve been having a lot of conversations about Chardonnay lately.  Who knew one wine could be so polarizing?  People either love it or hate it.  Honestly, I think those big, over-oaked California Chardonnays have given it a bad rap.  In recent years there has been a trend of lesser oaked, more food friendly Chardonnays.  Then there are the stainless Chards. Stainless, or naked Chardonnays are an expression of the grape in its purest form.  There is no oak manipulation, so you really get to see what this varietal is like.  Recently I revisited this type of Chardonnay and was not disappointed.  It was lovely and so quaffable.  I could drink it all day (something you will not hear me say about a Chardonnay very often). Details: Four Vines “The Willing” Chardonnay 2016 Monterey County California, USA Tasting Notes: On first glance, this wine is a gorgeous bright golden hue.  A bouquet of tropical fruits awaits: papaya, guava, lychee and pineapple.  It’s telling of what is to come.  On first taste, this wine is …

Featured Wine (Glasses) of the Week

Let’s talk about wine glasses. I have a coworker who loves to drink wine out of a small water glass because it makes her feel like she’s in Europe.  I understand – for me, wine is all about the experience.  A big part of that is how it makes me feel.  However, a water glass is restricting the full experience of the wine.  Don’t believe me?  Try drinking wine from a water glass and then try drinking from a wine glass.  You will notice a difference. Wine glasses are shaped in a way to help deliver the aromas of the wine.  They are also designed so you can swirl the wine to release the fragrance.  It doesn’t matter if the wine glass is stemless or has a stem.  It is the shape of the vessel that is important. I recently got to try some beautiful red wine titanium crystal glasses from ROD Wine Co.  First of all, I will admit, I am completely enamored by the shape of these glasses.  They are curvy and sexy.  …

Featured Wine of the Week – Orange Wines

Orange wines seem to be popping up all over my Instagram feed, in some of my favorite wine bars and in the stores!  What are orange wines?  They are not wines made from oranges, as you might guess.  They are a style of wine where the white grape is fermented with the skins, like how red wine is made.  This technique is intended to produce fuller bodied, more tannic wines from white grapes. I took a class on orange wines several years ago, and was not impressed.  While they were beautiful to look at, they were bitter and lacked any kind of real character.  However, it seems the wine making process on these orange wines has gotten better, because suddenly I (and everyone else, it seems) have found a couple of orange wines I like.  Details: Albino Armani Pinot Grigio 2017 12.5% Alcohol Valdadage, Veneto, Italy Cold mascerated, soft pressed   Tasting Notes: Flirty in nature, this wine demonstrates its desire to please with its gorgeous copper color.  It greets with a bouquet of lilacs …

Featured Wine of the Week

Even when I was a new wine drinker, there was something about Rhone varietals that I loved more than anything else.  I would take a Syrah any day over a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Merlot.  Can you believe it?  However, there was something so juicy, so spicy, so lovely about Rhone varietals that I just fell in love with them. In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, some Rhone varietals include Syrah, Viognier, Grenache, Grenache Blanc (a different varietal than Grenache – not the white version of one), Mourvedre, and Rousanne, to name a few. Most recently I’ve become enamored of GSMs, or Grenache/Syrah/Mourvedre as a blend.  So, when I went to a local wine bar the other day, I asked for one.  What I got was a 2016 Kivel Stadt Cellars “Father’s Watch” Red Blend.  It was a GSM, with one addition:  32% Carignane.  This wine was completely unexpected. Since I went into it blindly at first, I thought I was drinking a wine from France.  It was earthy, with bit of …

Featured Wine (Event) of the Week

Happy Wine Wednesday!  I’m dreaming of bubbles this morning after attending a super fun event put on by J Vineyards at the PaliHouse in Los Angeles.  It was advertised as a wine and cheese interactive tasting led by Winemaker Nicole Hitchcock of J Vineyards and Francois Robin of Fromage France, followed by a cheese and wine soiree. So, let me get this straight…one of my favorite Sonoma wineries was putting on an event with a French Cheesemonger? Um….yes!  Yes please! I’m not sure what I expected, but I did not expect the wonderful cheese and wine extravaganza I got to enjoy!  There was a bar pouring four beautiful wines from J Vineyards:  J Sparkling Brut Rose, J Cuvee 20, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Noir.  More on those in a moment…  There was a giant table in the middle of the courtyard filled with several different French cheeses, including Brillat-Severin, Tomme de Savoie, Bleu D’Auvergne, and Beaufort.  There were olives, almonds, berries, honey, and of course, the requisite bread. Oh. My. God.  I was in heaven! As …

Featured Wine of the Week

Happy Wine Wednesday!  Here we are again, and I thought it was only appropriate to feature a wine that speaks of Spring, warm weather and the #superbloom!  Today I am featuring another wine from Urban Press Winery, a Grenache Blanc with the name, “Fiore,” meaning flower. This wine has become my hands down favorite white at the moment.  I’ve always loved a good Grenache Blanc, since I was first introduced to it years ago at Bouchon in Santa Barbara.  At that time, I got to try a Tercero Wines Grenache Blanc.  I took a picture of the bottle and went on a hunt for more.  I wasn’t able to find it, but fast forward to a couple of years later, and I was working an event where I got to meet Owner/Winemaker, Larry Schaffer of Tercero Wines and taste his other beautiful creations. Grenache Blanc is still hard to find, and when I find a good one, I latch on to it.  Giovanni D’Andrea, Owner and Winemaker of Urban Press, has filled that niche for …