Monthly Archives: March 2013

Fabulously Food Friendly and Ageworthy Grüner

Several years back, sommeliers who are always looking for better food pairing wines and preferably something exotic, started putting Grüners on their lists and recommending them to patrons. While many of those early proponents have since moved on to other white wine discoveries, Grüner remains one of the most versatile and food friendly wines around. And excellent examples can be found for $20 and under. Continue reading

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Good Value ‘House Wine’? Try a Côtes du Rhône

Are you looking for a versatile wine you can enjoy with all kinds of casual food—grilled meats, pastas, pizza? Would you like to find a “house wine” for under $20 that still makes a meal feel special? France’s gigantic eastern appellation—the Rhône—may be a better value than you might think. Continue reading

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Bodegas Riojanas Rioja Monte Real Vertical

Tempranillo from excellent vineyards and good vintages like the Bodegas Riojanas Monte Reals can go forever, retaining a lot of their delicious fruit for several decades, but putting on wonderful secondary and tertiary flavors of tobacco, mushroom and cigar box as well. Continue reading

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Zinfandel: The Highs and Lows of ZAP 2013

The greatest Zin producers, whose wines I’ve sampled under other circumstances as well and that are consistently impressive, responsible for one or more wines at this event that I rated 92+ points or higher, are Ballentine, Bedrock, Black Sears, Bucklin, Charter Oak, Dashe, Grgich Hills, Hendry, Puccioni, Robert Biale, Scott Harvey, Terra d’Oro, Three, Turley and Vino Noceto. Continue reading

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Ribera del Duero: Rich, Tempranillo-Based Wines

If you like rich, complex, high quality red wines, you owe it to yourself to get to know the wines of Ribera del Duero. The steep vineyards rising along the banks of the Duero River in Spain’s second most important wine region, after Rioja, yield wines that are frequently outstanding. Continue reading

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